Union Jack Bets Explained

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What is a Union Jack Bet?

A bet on nine selections, consisting of between 8 and 80 bets depending on the type.

Union Jack

Named after the Union Jack due to the way groupings are determined, by laying out the selections in a 3 by 3 grid then drawing lines vertically, horizontally and diagonally to find 8 groups of 3. A benefit of this bet is it gives the punter scope to arrange their bets such that their most favoured selections have a greater bearing on returns than their least favoured. Position E appears in 4 trebles, positions A, C, G, I appear in 3 trebles and B, D, F, H only in 2. To work out returns or experiment with stakes and selection positions try one of the union jack calculators for trebles, trixies, patents, or round robins.

Bookmakers often make available special betting slips to place this type of wager laid out in the style of a Union Jack.

Types of Union Jack Bet

ABC
DEF
GHI

The grid is used to identify 8 groups of 3 by drawing lines horizontally (ABC, DEF, GHI), vertically (ADG, BEH, CFI) and diagonally (AEI, CEG). These groups of 3 are used in the Union Jack bets outlined below.

NameTotal Number of BetsBet Types
Union Jack Trebles88 trebles
Union Jack Trixie328 trebles and 24 doubles
Union Jack Patent568 trebles, 24 doubles and 24 singles
Union Jack Round Robin808 trebles, 24 doubles and 24 Up-And-Down SSA Pairs

How It Works

Using the letters A through to I, here are the eight different trebles that can be made:

  • ABC (horizontal)
  • DEF (horizontal)
  • GHI (horizontal)
  • ADG (vertical)
  • BEH (vertical)
  • CFI (vertical)
  • AEI (diagonal)
  • BFG (diagonal)

The Union Jack bet offers eight combinations, providing extensive coverage across the selected events. This increases the chances of winning compared to single bets but also requires a more significant initial stake due to the multiple bets placed.

Despite the increased coverage of your betting picks and the added chances of winning, your initial investment will be considerably more than a standard single bet and other multiple betting options. This is where our Union Jack calculator comes in handy.

Using our calculator, you can better understand the number of winning bets required to achieve profitability. It is crucial to note that you do not necessarily have to win all eight individual bets; you just need to surpass the threshold to secure profitability.

The probability of your selections and the margin of error they allow are essential to consider. For instance, if you choose selections with odds lower than Evens, you will likely need them all to win, and just one unsuccessful bet could lead to returns lower than your initial investment.

Now we will look at how our nine selections work, ranging from Horse A through to Horse I.

Examples

Selection Name

Odds

Horse A

1/1

Horse B

2/1

Horse C

3/1

Horse D

4/1

Horse E

5/1

Horse F

6/1

Horse G

7/1

Horse H

8/1

Horse I

9/1

To calculate the profit per bet and per bet type for each of the eight bets of the Union Jack, with a stake of £1, we must consider the possible outcomes and their respective odds looking at the total returns for each.

Treble Bets (9 bets):

ABC (Horse A, Horse B & Horse C): (1 x 1/1 x 2/1 x 3/1) = £24

DEF (Horse D, Horse E & Horse F): (1 x 4/1 x 5/1 x 6/1) = £210

GHI (Horse G, Horse H & Horse I): (1 x 7/1 x 8/1 x 9/1) = £720

ADG (Horse A, Horse D & Horse G): (1 x 1/1 x 4/1 x 71) = £80

BEH (Horse B, Horse E & Horse H): (1 x 2/1 x 5/1 x 8/1) = £162

CFI (Horse C, Horse F & Horse I): (1 x 3/1 x 6/1 x 9/1) = £280

AEI (Horse A, Horse E & Horse I): (1 x 1/1 x 5/1 x 9/1) = £120

CEG (Horse C, Horse E & Horse G): (1 x 3/1 x 5/1 x 7/1) = £192

Should all nine horses get past the winning post before anyone else, all eight bets will be declared winners, and if you strike it lucky with a 100% success rate, a total return of £1,789 would be yours. At the same time, the profit would then be the total return minus the initial stake of £8.

Therefore, an overall profit of £1,780 would be secured in the example above. However, this figure will vary depending on the odds of your original choices and the success that they subsequently have at the racecourse.

Here is our pre-loaded Union Jack bet calculator to see this bet example play out and test different outcomes with different stakes. To change the outcomes, simply change the ‘Outcome’ from ‘Winner’ to ‘Lost’. Click here to test it out.

How To Place A Union Jack with Bet365

Step 1. Select the sport you want to bet on. For this example, we have selected football.

Union Jack Sport Selection
Sports Menu Options - Taken 27/03/2024

Step 2. Note the nine selections you want to make. The top selection would be A through to I.

Union Jack Bet Selections
Nine Bet Selections - Taken 27/03/2024

Step 3. Then, place the eight trebles as per the combinations above (this example is ABC).

Union Jack Bet Trebles
ABC Treble Example - Taken 27/03/2024

Reasons for making a Union Jack Bet:

Now that we have explained a Union Jack bet, we will consider why you would place one.

  • Enhanced Coverage: Union Jack bets offer extensive coverage across multiple selections, providing a broader range of potential winning combinations than single bets. This increased coverage increases the chances of achieving successful outcomes and winning more bets within a single wager.
  • Balanced Risk and Reward: Union Jack bets balance risk and reward. While they offer greater coverage and increased chances of winning compared to single bets, they also retain the potential for higher returns compared to simpler bet types like single bets or straightforward accumulators. This balanced approach appeals to bettors seeking a mix of risk mitigation and potential profits.
  • Strategic Flexibility: Union Jack bets offer strategic flexibility, allowing punters to customise their bets by selecting multiple combinations within a single wager. This strategic flexibility enables bettors to tailor their bets to their preferences, risk tolerance, and strategies, providing a dynamic betting experience.

Like flag bets, Union Jack bets incorporate built-in risk management by spreading the stake across different combinations. This strategic approach helps mitigate the impact of potential losses and enhances the overall potential for profitable outcomes.

Despite their potential for higher returns, Union Jack bets may require a higher initial stake and involve a degree of complexity. Bettors must carefully consider their selections and the potential outcomes of each combination, similar to flag bets.

However, similar to flag bets, Union Jack bets offer the potential for increased returns and flexibility in betting options, making them attractive to experienced bettors seeking substantial profits.

Nonetheless, there remains a possibility of only securing partial profit if not all selections win. This underscores the importance of careful selection and risk management in Union Jack betting, similar to flag bets, to optimise profitability and mitigate potential losses.

Like any betting type, there will always be benefits and drawbacks. With this in mind, we shall look at the plusses and minuses of a Union Jack.

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Diversification of Bets: Union Jack bets allow bettors to diversify their bets by spreading their stake across multiple combinations of selections. This diversification reduces reliance on any single outcome and helps to spread risk, increasing the overall stability of the bet. For example, if you select three football teams to win and place a Union Jack bet, your stake will be spread across several combinations of these teams winning. This means that even if one of the selected teams fails to win, you still have other combinations that could yield a profit.
  • Increased Excitement and Anticipation: Union Jack bets add an extra layer of excitement and anticipation to the betting experience due to the potential for multiple outcomes across various combinations of selections. Each combination represents a unique betting opportunity, with the potential for different outcomes to occur across the selections. As a result, bettors are only partially reliant on the success of a single outcome. This diversity of potential outcomes adds extra excitement to the betting experience.
Cons
  • Limited Flexibility in Stake Management: Union Jack bets often require a fixed stake to be placed across all combinations, limiting bettors' flexibility in managing their stake. This lack of flexibility may not suit those who prefer to adjust their stakes based on their confidence in specific combinations or their overall betting strategy. This limitation may not suit those who prefer a more dynamic approach to stake management, where they can adjust their stakes based on their assessment of the potential risk and reward for each combination. As a result, some may find Union Jack bets less suitable for their betting strategies or preferences.
  • Higher Risk of Overextension: Due to the potential for multiple combinations and higher initial stakes, there is a risk that bettors may overextend themselves financially when placing Union Jack bets. This could lead to more significant losses if the bet does not yield the desired outcomes. If the Union Jack bet does not yield the desired outcomes, such as if none or only a few combinations result in successful outcomes, bettors may incur significant losses. This risk of overextension underscores the importance of responsible bankroll management.

Conclusion

Before deciding on a Union Jack bet, evaluating whether it fits your betting preferences and risk tolerance is crucial. While it offers the possibility of greater returns, it may need a more significant number of accurate selections to ensure you generate a profit.

Last Update: 27 March 2024

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Also See

Union Jack Trebles calculator - Work out winnings using this free bet calculator.

Union Jack Trixie calculator - Calculate the payout of this 9 selection wager with the trixie betting tool.

Union Jack Patent calculator - Discover how much your patent bet returns using the odds calculator.

Union Jack Round Robin calculator - This popular horse racing bet can be calculated easily using the linked tool.

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