Rule 4 Deductions Explained

When the Bookmaker prices his book, he takes into account the chances of each horse winning relative to the chances of the other horses in the field based on all horses running the race. However, sometimes horses are withdrawn for a number of reasons and often at the last minute when many bets have already been placed.

If the bookmaker was forced to pay out on the price of all bets placed up until that point you can probably see how this could be open to all forms of abuse so the Tattersalls Rule 4c Scale of Deductions was introduced to protect the bookmaker whilst still being fair to the punter (the alternative would be to just void all bets which wouldn't be much fun!)

Obviously, if it is the favourite which has been withdrawn, the picture alters significantly. If it is a rank outsider then some bookmakers take the view that it is not likely to affect the outcome of the race and so don't impose the 5p deduction found at the foot of the following table.

Please note: It has become apparent that some bookmakers are now making deductions of up to 90p in the pound for very short-priced favourites whilst some limit the deductions to 75p in the pound and this covers all horses priced 3/10 or lower.

List of Rule 4 Deductions
Price of horse at time of withdrawal Deduction from winnings
1/9 or shorter90p in the £
2/11 to 2/1785p in the £
1/4 to 1/580p in the £
3/10 to 2/775p in the £
2/5 to 1/370p in the £
8/15 to 4/965p in the £
8/13 to 4/760p in the £
4/5 to 4/655p in the £
20/21 to 5/650p in the £
Evens to 6/545p in the £
5/4 to 6/440p in the £
13/8 to 7/435p in the £
15/8 to 9/430p in the £
5/2 to 3/125p in the £
10/3 to 4/120p in the £
9/2 to 11/215p in the £
6/1 to 9/110p in the £
10/1 to 14/15p in the £

If over 14/1 the liability would be unchanged. In the case of two or more horses being withdrawn before coming under Starters Orders, the total deductions shall not exceed 90p in £ (or 75p, depending on the bookie).

Example - £10 win bet, taking an early or board price of 9/1

2 horses withdrawn before the start.

One horse trading at 3/1 (deduction 25p)

Second horse trading at 14/1 (deduction 5p)

Making a total Rule 4 deduction of 30p in the £

£10 @ 9/1 = £90 WINNINGS on the bet.

Deduct £27 from the winnings part of the bet (90 x 30p)

The bet now wins £63 (SP 6.3 /1)

Then add on your original stake of £10

Total Returns would be £73 making a profit on the bet of £63

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