Accumulator bets

Also known as a parlay or all up bet, an accumulator is a series of wagers on the outcomes of multiple events. If an initial wager is won, the stake and winnings are placed on the next wager in the series. If any of the wagers is lost, the entire bet is lost.

Generally the term accumulator is used to refer only to bets that include wagers on four or more events. The terms double and treble are used for multiple bets that include wagers on two or three events, respectively.

An accumulator on more than four events may be described using a term like fivefold, sixfold or sevenfold, to specify the number of events it includes.

Example of an accumulator

You place a fourfold accumulator bet, with a stake of £5, on the following outcomes:

  • Ireland winning the Six Nations Championship, at odds of 7/1
  • Munster winning the Heineken Cup at 4/1
  • Leicester winning the Aviva Premiership at 4/1
  • the Sharks winning the Super 14 at 6/1.

If Ireland wins the Six Nations, the payout of £40 (your £5 stake plus winnings of £35) will automatically be wagered on Munster winning the Heineken Cup, at odds of 4/1. If Munster wins the Cup, the bet will generate a £200 payout, which will be wagered on Leicester winning the Aviva Premiership at odds of 4/1. If Leicester goes on to win the Aviva Premiership, the bet will generate a payout of £1,000. This will automatically be wagered on the Sharks. If the Sharks win the Super 14 given odds of 6/1, you’ll earn a total payout of £7,000 – a whopping amount, given that your original stake was only £5.

However, this is the down side. If any of the selections loses, you’ll immediately lose your stake of £5 and any winnings accumulated up to that point.

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Biggest accumulator win

In 2011, Steve Whiteley bet £2 on a sixfold accumulator at the Exeter racecourse. His first five selections all won their races, apparently leaving Whiteley too nervous to watch the final race. The horse Lupin, jockeyed by Jessica Lodge, won the sixth race at odds of 12/1. The result? Whiteley won a staggering £1.45 million for a stake of only £2.

Accumulator betting tips

Like Steve Whiteley, you could win a massive payout for just a tiny stake if an accumulator bet you place wins. This applies especially if the accumulator includes more than four selections. The downside is that the likelihood that you’ll win all the bets in an accumulator is very low. As the number of selections in the bet goes up – for example if you place a sixfold or sevenfold accumulator – the statistical likelihood of a win becomes very low.

However, if you go in knowing that you’re unlikely to win and you place only small stakes, accumulator bets are actually an excellent proposition. This is because the risk you’re taking is minimal if you wager just a pound or two, but the potential payout could be sky high if you win.

Try accumulator betting at William Hill now