How to bet on the Jackpot

The Tote small stake, big win bet is the Jackpot. Aptly named, as if you win it – you win big!

You can play the Irish Jackpot with the Tote on any Irish race meeting. You must pick the winners of races 3, 4, 5 and 6. Perhaps one of the trickier Tote bets, however, it is also one of the most rewarding. Your Jackpot bet must placed before the 'off' of race 3.

This bet can be played for as little as €1, but can add up with the more horses you choose as your potential winners, so why not consider pooling your money with a couple of friends at the races and increasing your chances of that big win!

To play the bet, pick up a Jackpot slip from the Tote counters and mark the horse numbers in each race that you think are possible winners. Then select your stake and hand it back to any Tote teller. You will be given back a Tote ticket, which you must keep safe so as to claim your winnings after the 6th race!

To work out what the best will cost, you have to work out first how many possible winning combinations you have. If, for example, you simply pick one horse in each of the four races, that means you have just 1 possible chance of winning as follows:

1 x 1 x 1 x 1 = 1 unit

Multiply your number of units by your chosen stake to work out the cost. In this example:

1 unit x €1 stake = €1

To increase your chances, you might like to select more than one horse per race, for example if you picked two horses in each race you would have 16 potential winning combinations as follows:

2 x 2 x 2 x 2 = 16 units @ €1 stake = €16

This might seem off-putting, I mean it’s hard enough to pick one winner right? Well with so many excellent horses and jockeys racing, horseracing can be really unpredictable and can throw up many surprises.

Take for example the four ladies who won a few thousand euro at Fairyhouse a while back, by simply selecting the numbers used on the sample Jackpot on the back of the Jackpot slip and didn’t study the form at all!

Or even more impressive is the story of Steve Whitely, a first-time player in England who netted nearly €2million in March 2011 for picking all six winners in the UK Jackpot, which is harder to win than the Irish Jackpot as you have to pick the winners of races 1 to 6!

If it all seems too challenging but you still want to try, you can always ask for a Jackpot Quick Pick, which like the lotto quick pick, selects horse numbers for you. 


The Tote also offers betting over the phone, online or through a mobile betting app. For more on this visit

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