Rule 4 Deductions Chart

A Rule 4 deduction is applied when a horse is withdrawn from a race after the time of your bet. The deduction is a percentage of your stake, and can be calculated by applying the odds of the withdrawn horse at the time of withdrawal from the chart below.

Odds Decimal Deduction
1/9 or shorter 1.11 or shorter 90p in £1
2/11 to 2/17 1.18 to 1.12 85p in £1
1/4 to 1/5 1.25 to 1.20 80p in £1
3/10 to 2/7 1.30 to 1.29 75p in £1
2/5 to 1/3 1.40 to 1.33 70p in £1
8/15 to 4/9 1.53 to 1.45 65p in £1
8/13 to 4/7 1.62 to 1.57 60p in £1
4/5 to 4/6 1.80 to 1.66 55p in £1
20/21 to 5/6 1.95 to 1.83 50p in £1
Evens to 6/5 2.00 to 2.20 45p in £1
5/4 to 6/4 2.25 to 2.50 40p in £1
8/5 to 7/4 2.60 to 2.75 35p in £1
9/5 to 9/4 2.80 to 3.25 30p in £1
12/5 to 3/1 3.40 to 4.00 25p in £1
16/5 to 4/1 4.20 to 5.00 20p in £1
9/2 to 11/2 5.50 to 6.50 15p in £1
6/1 to 9/1 7.00 to 10.00 10p in £1
10/1 to 14/1 11.00 to 15.00 5p in £1*
Over 14/1 Over 15.00 No deduction

*Not all bookmakers make a deduction when the Rule 4 is 5p in the pound. Check with your bookie when this is the case.

What is a rule 4 deduction?

A rule 4 deduction is an adjustment to a horse racing price that has already been taken by a bettor in order to cover a withdrawn horse. In order for backers of the non runner to receive their money back the market will need to be adjusted, after the fact.

A rule 4 deduction can be frustrating but statistically the rule 4 deductions actually favour the punter based on the amount of deduction and the percentage chance of victory the withdrawn runner had based on its odds.

A rule 4 deduction is expressed as a number of pence in the pound. The shorter the price of the withdrawn runner, the higher the amount of pence in the pound and therefore the bigger the rule 4. The bigger the price of the withdrawn horse, the smaller the rule 4 deduction is.

If a runner is withdrawn when priced at bigger than 14/1 there is no rule 4 deduction.

How are rule 4 deductions calculated?

Rule 4 deductions are calculated using the rule 4 deductions table above. Each price band has a corresponding deduction. Whichever band the odds fall into, the corresponding deduction will be made against the odds that have already been taken.

The rule 4 deductions are calculated based on the odds at the time of withdrawal, not the odds at the time the bet is struck. Markets can be extremely volatile so this can work in the bettor’s favour if the price of the withdrawn horse drifts after the bet has been struck but it can also work against the bettor if the withdrawn horse is backed before it becomes a non runner.

What is the biggest possible rule4 deduction?

The rule4 deduction can be as much as 95p in the Pound but that sort of rule4 is extremely rare. The reason it is so rare is that it requires a runner priced up at 1/9 or shorter to be withdrawn.

Not only is it very rare to find a horse available at such short odds, but the chances of one of those runners being withdrawn is even slimmer.

What are the smallest rule4 deductions?

The smallest of the rule4 deductions is the 5p rule4. This is also the most common type of rule4 that will be found amongst the bookmakers.

A rule 4 of 5p in the Pound is invoked when there is a non runner priced between 10/1 and 14/1 inclusive. If the non runner is any bigger than that there isn’t a rule4.

Although this is a common rule4 deduction, some bookmakers ignore 5p rule4 deductions as a concession to their customers.

Do bookmakers pay different rule 4 deductions?

The rule 4 deductions can vary from bookmaker to bookmaker, as the pre race odds vary from bookmaker to bookmaker. All traditional fixed odds bookmakers abide by the same rule 4 deductions table, as above, but as they don’t offer the same odds on every runner there will be plenty of times when a withdrawal causes a differing rule 4 from one bookie to another.

It is rare for rule 4 deductions to wildly vary between bookmakers. There is generally more variation in bookmaker odds from runner to runner when races are first priced up the day before the race but there are fewer withdrawals at this time. Most withdrawals happen in the morning of the race (unless there is a change in the going in the afternoon) and come each morning there is usually only a point or two difference in the odds between the odds compilers. This means there is normally only a variation of no more than 5p between bookmaker rule 4s.

The main difference between bookmakers is some disregard the minimum rule 4 deduction (5p) as a goodwill gesture to their customers.

Can there be more than one rule 4 in a single race?

There is no real limit to how many rule 4 deductions there can be in a single race. The more runners at 14/1 or less that get withdrawn, the more rule 4 deductions there will be.

When there is more than one rule 4 deduction the rule4 amount will depend on the time the bet was placed. If a bet is placed after the first rule 4 deduction it will only be subject to rule 4 deductions that apply to subsequent withdrawals.

How do I work out how much a rule 4 will cost me?

The main thing to remember when trying to calculate a rule 4 deduction is that the rule 4 comes out of the profit from the bet, not the total return.

So to calculate how much a rule 4 costs you all you need to do is change ‘pence’ to percent and deduct that from your profit. As an example, a 5p rule 4 deduction on a £100 stake on a 10/1 winner will reduce your profit by 5%. The profit on this bet would ordinarily be £1,000 so 5% of that is £50 – that’s the deduction. The total return on the bet would be £1,050 – your £100 stake plus the £950 profit.

Where can I find the rule 4 deductions today?

The official BHA website lists all the day’s non runners as they happen. The prices of those withdrawn horses can be found either on the bookmaker websites or through an odds comparison website.

Typically most bookmakers will highlight any rule 4 deduction on the relevant racecard page, as well as the time from which it applies to bets.

Does best odds guaranteed still apply after a rule 4?

If best odds guaranteed would ordinarily apply to a bet you have placed it will still apply even if there is a rule 4 deduction in the race. The bet will be paid out on whatever return is better – the original odds with the rule 4 applied or the starting price.

Which bookies don’t apply a 5p rule 4 deduction?

Several bookmakers ignore the 5p rule 4 deductions as a concession.

Arguably the best bookmaker for this is bet365, who simply don’t apply any rule 4 deductions that are 5p. Coral, Ladbrokes and William Hill will ignore a 5p rule 4 deduction only if it’s the first on the race. Further 5p rule 4s on the race will be counted.

What are the Rule 4 deductions on the Betfair Exchange?

Exchanges do things slightly differently when it comes to deductions and the Betfair Exchange reduction factors are calculated differently.

The calculation for the Betfair Exchange reduction factor is as follows:

(Decimal odds / 100) x reduction factor of withdrawn horse = the amount to reduce original price by.

Subtract this amount from the original price to calculate the new price.

It’s worth noting that if the reduction factor for the withdrawn horse is less than 2.5% it is not applied.