The Pari-Mutuel is the french version of our Totepool betting. So when you go to France and have a bet on the racetrack you can only have a Pari-Mutuel bet as the are no bookmakers on course in France. Therefore when you get to Longchamp you have a bet at the Pari-Mutual betting window. In race track pari-mutuel betting, all bettors' play is held by the track. Out of this pool, the track takes money for its operation, winning purses of the races, state taxes, and all other mandated funds. Winning bettors are then paid their portion from the pool after each race is completed.
The Pari-Mutual all came about by a gentleman called Oller who was frustrated by the bookmakers of Paris. The Perier mutuel means "to wager among ourselves", and that was the first handle of pari-mutuel wagering. In England, which soon adopted the system, it became known as Paris mutuals.
From very humble beginings on Arc day in 2006, revenues of 54.6 million euros were placed in France over the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe weekend; 31.6 million of which was generated on the Sunday. Some 5.9 million euros were staked at the racecourse itself (PMH), including 4.9 million euros on the Sunday alone. A clear record was also set for on-course betting on a single race, with over 2.6 million staked on the Arc. Bets were also taken in 44 foreign countries, in partnership with the PMU in the pooled countries (Switzerland, Monaco, Germany, Spain, Austria and Poland) and also in non-pooled countries (Italy, Hong Kong, United States, South Africa, Netherlands, Poland, Morocco and Tatarstan). These stakes reached 4.7 million euros over the weekend as a whole, including 3.7 million on Arc day.
Placing a bet on the Arc De Triomphe
Now comes the interesting thing, many UK punters with online betting accounts will have a number of options when placing a bet on the Arc. The UK bookmakers usually offer the industry SP price or the Pari-Mutual odds and as such it may well pay to take the French odds on an English or Irish horse as the French punters will generally back their own horses for the Arc and as such the Pari-Mutual prices tend to be greater than the Bookmakers SP's. Therefore one important Arc De triomphe tip is to take the Pari-Mutual prices if you are backing an English or Irish horse in the race.