What are the standard each-way terms on the Grand National?
The standard each-way terms on any horse race are dictated by the number of runners and, once that number rises to twelve or more, by whether or not the race is a handicap. The Grand National is, of course, a handicap, in which a maximum of 40 runners are permitted to participate. Thus, if bookmakers apply the strict letter of the law, the standard each-way terms are the same as any other handicap with 16 or more runners; first, second, third and fourth place are paid, at one quarter of the win odds.
However, the Grand National is so much more than just another handicap; it’s a British institution. The last two renewals attracted peak viewing figures of 9.6 million and 8.8 million, respectively, in Britain alone and, with over £100 million bet on the race, industry-wide, bookmakers are invariably falling over themselves to attract the attention of once-a-year punters. Consequently, even in the ante-post market, some bookmakers offer five or six places – albeit at a rather miserly one fifth of the win odds – as standard.
On the day of the race, some bookmakers may go a stage further and offer enhanced each-way terms, involving seven, eight or even ten places at one fifth the win odds. However, take notice of the win odds they offer, which are likely to be reduced, sometimes significantly, to compensate for the increased liability, on the part of the bookmaker, in offering enhanced each-way terms.