What is Dutching?

Dutching is contraction of ‘Dutch betting’ and describes a betting technique that involves backing two or more selections in the same race. If the odds on each selection are exactly the same, the stake is split, equally, between or among them. If not, the stake is split proportionally, according to the implied probability of each selection winning – that is, horses at shorter odds carry correspondingly higher stakes, and vice versa – so the return is the same, regardless of which selection wins. Of course, Dutching isn’t foolproof; backing two or more horses in a race increases your chances of a return, but if none of your selections wins you lose your entire stake.

Bear in mind, too, that backing two horses in a race, by placing the same stake on each, not only doubles the outlay, but greatly reduces the overall odds. A winner at 2/1, for example, requires an outlay of two points to produce a return of three points – or, in other words, a net profit of one point – so it is easy to see that the true, ‘coupled’ odds are 1/2. Similarly, backing two horses at 3/1 produces collective odds of 1/1, or evens, and so on.