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How often can you expect to win one, two, or three bets at Let It Ride?

25 February 2013

By Alan Krigman

Question: A friend introduced me to Let It Ride on my last casino visit. I played for over three hours, at two different tables. I had very few winning hands. Neither did anybody else. The dealers said this was unusual. Were they telling the truth, or is this game just hard to win?

Answer: Let It Ride has what the casinos call a low "hit rate." But this is counterbalanced by the fact that most losses are a single betting unit, while wins are typically multiples of the base wager. For instance, even if you start with a pair of 10s and don't improve, you'll win three units. Converting the 10s to two pair will return a total of six units. Three of a kind will bring you nine units. And this is just the bottom of the ladder.

Over a long period, small numbers of wins will compensate for large numbers of losses. However, in a short session -- and three hours is short in statistical terms -- the game occasion-ally appears to be very hot... but more often seems to be very cold.

Assuming you know the proper decision strategy, here's what you can expect:

  • You'll leave your first bet in action on 7.4 percent of all hands; of these, you'll win a whopping 93.4 percent.

  • You'll leave your second bet in action on 15.9 percent of all hands; of these, you'll win an impressive 89.6 percent.

  • The third bet must stay in action; of these you'll win a disappointing 23.9 percent.

Alan Krigman
Alan Krigman was a weekly syndicated newspaper gaming columnist and Editor & Publisher of Winning Ways, a monthly newsletter for casino aficionados. His columns were focused on those interested in gambling probability and statistics. He passed away in October, 2013.