In a typical horse racing event, a selection of horses race, and the first over the finish line wins. You bet on the outcome of that event. It is about as straightforward as sports get. However, the jargon that surrounds horse racing can often make it seem a lot more confusing than it is.
Here, in our horse racing terms glossary , we are going to have the horse racing terms explained to help you better comprehend the intricacies of the sport. Starting Price SP refers to the odds on any horse at the start of the race. When you place a bet, you'll usually be given the choice of the current odds on the selection and the Starting Price. However, most online bookmakers , especially the finest horse racing betting sites, offer best odds guaranteed which means you will be paid out at the bigger price regardless.
Non-runner NR is a term used when a horse will no longer be taking part in the race. Almost all bookmakers will refund stakes placed on horse racing non-runners. In horse racing in the United Kingdom, Rule 4 is a ruling put in place to appease the market when a horse is withdrawn from a race after a wager has been placed.
A wager placed at least a day in advance of an event is referred to as being ante-post. These can be placed a long time ahead, as soon as the market opens. UK betting sites will not typically offer non-runner refunds on ante-post bets.
When the bet is under the condition of NRNB, then the stake will be returned in full to the customer, otherwise, no refund will be forthcoming. When you back a horse, it means you have selected that horse for your bet, usually to win, but it can also refer to other markets. Cashing out is a widely available betting feature which allows you to take a payout before the completion of a bet , based on the current performance of that market.
In other words, you get a larger offer the more likely your bet is to win. This is also known as the overround , and like our last example, is not only heard of in horse racing circles. The house edge is the mathematical edge the bookmaker has based on the provided odds. The lower the house edge, the better your odds. The favourite is the horse considered most likely to win the race based on who has the shortest odds. If a horse is in the frame it means they have finished in one of the top four places.
The reason this is so important is that many markets allow you to bet on more than just the winners of a race. However, we would advise that there are no sure things in the world of gambling. There is also a form guide, which provides information in this regard. This is another slang term for the state of the ground , for example, whether the ground is firm or soft. Both the characteristics of the racetrack and the weather can significantly affect a race.
This is when a horse is considered very unlikely to win. It would generally have one of, if not the, longest odds of all racers. This is another easy-to-understand slang term, it means you are only backing your horse to win the race. In some races, the result is so close that photographic evidence is used to determine a winner, hence, a photo finish.
A return is the amount of money you receive for a bet , meaning both winnings and stake. It means that a bookmaker has decided to reduce the odds of one market due to a large number of bets being placed in one direction. Put simply, tote is a form of pool betting where your winnings are calculated by the amount you have entered in the pool alongside the number of winners.
It is exceedingly popular in British horse racing. To continue our horse racing betting explained guide, we have listed the different types of races out there so you can get a full picture of the diversity horse racing can offer. Flat races traditionally take place during the summer and are run over distances between 5 furlongs and 2 and a bit miles on courses without obstacles.
As the name would suggest, they are run on flat, level ground. They are a test of speed, stamina, and skill. The lack of obstacles means that many consider this to be the purest form of horse racing. National Hunt can also be referred to as jump racing and traditionally takes place during the Autumn, Winter and Spring months, culminating in or around The Grand National which is usually held on the first Saturday in April.
A unique form of racing, the most striking visual distinction is that the horse also has to pull a sulky alongside their weight and a jockey. But even more unusual is that the goal is not to go as fast as possible, but instead to maintain a pace without breaking stride. It is an incredibly intense, disciplined, and strategic form of this sport.
So distinct is Harness Racing that some of our horse racing betting explained advice does not apply. But that just shows just how versatile a sport horse racing is. Almost the polar opposite of our previous pick, quarter horse racing is all about speed. This can be thought of as the horse racing equivalent of a sprint, taking place in a quarter of a mile or less.
To give you an idea of just how fast these races can be, the world record is held by Winning Brew, who completed a quarter of a mile in Once again, we go from one extreme to another. As the name would suggest, Endurance Races take place over much larger tracks.
The Mongol Derby, for instance, takes place over an eye-watering kilometres. To put that in perspective, It is around times the length of a quarter horse race. If that sounds impossible, do note that they must change horses every 40 kilometres. The race lasts ten days. This is an extreme example, but it is still common for an endurance race to last 12 hours and go over miles.
An astounding test of willpower as well as ability. The speed at which a horse can gallop is affected by the amount of weight it carries. Handicap weights are calculated based on the official ratings published by the British Horse Racing Authority and are expressed in imperial pounds. Horse ratings represent a horse's level of ability in relation to the weight carried and are expressed in pounds lb.
The bigger the number assigned to a horse, the more capable it is considered to be. For example, a horse with a rating of would carry a total weight including jockey, saddle and irons of pounds 10stn. In both Flat and National Hunt racing, there are a series of classifications that are designed to help indicate the prestige, prize money and quality of the race. Both are split into classes from Group 1 — Races of major international importance.
Group 2 — Major international races but of slightly less importance than Group 1 races. Group 3 — Important domestic races. Listed Races — Just below group races. Grade 1 — The best championship races where the weight a horse carries is determined by age and sex. Grade 2 — The weight a horse carries is determined by age and sex but they are also made to carry more for any races they may have previously run.
Listed Races — Just below graded races. After Class 1 races, we then have Class 2 through to 7 which apply to both Flat and National Hunt Racing and are based on a horses handicap rating as follows:. Class 2 — Heritage Handicaps, Handicap rating of , and Class 3 — Handicap rating of and Class 4 — Handicap rating of and Class 5 — Handicap rating of and Class 6 — Handicap rating of and Class 7 — Handicap rating of Before placing your horse racing bets, you need to familiarise yourself with odds.
We'll explain the basics below but for a comprehensive explanation you can read our ultimate guide to understanding how betting odds work. Once you have an understanding of horse racing, the next natural step is to learn is how to read racing form cards. Racingpost cards, for instance, are a good place to start. A horse racing form card, or race card, has a deliberate structure and gives you information about each race. Being able to read a horse racing form card is, understandably, very important if you want to be successful.
Below we explain the different aspects of the card along with other factors you should consider before placing your bets. You can use the image below of a fairly standard online UK racecard as reference. These numbers are always displayed on a racecard in order of the amount of weight the horse is carrying. The smaller number to the right of the horses number represents the draw that the horse has got in the stalls. The lower the number, the closer the horse will be to the rails which can be an advantage on certain tracks and distances.
Below the horses NO. Form runs from left to right, with the oldest races on the left and the most recent on the right. The second column displays the name of the horse along with the shirt known as silks that the jockey will wear. You will also see a number which shows how many days it was since the horse last ran and some abbreviations. This is the amount of weight the horse will carry including the jockey and the saddle as decreed by the conditions of the race. You may also see some more abbreviations depending on whether the horse is wearing or using any equipment.
This shows both the name of the jockey and the trainer of the horse. If a jockey has a number in brackets to the side of his name then it means he is an apprentice jockey and is claiming a weight allowance. The table below features basic going descriptions along with their abbreviations that you may come across. If you have never placed a bet on horse racing before, especially if you have never placed a bet online before, then the process may seem intimidating. With that in mind, below is pretty much all you need to know about placing a bet online though do check out our full guide to this for more comprehensive information and tips.
Set up an account — This usually requires you to fill in a registration form including details like your name, e-mail, and date of birth. You will also be asked to choose a password for you to log in safely. Login to your account — Use that username and password to log in to your account.
The specifics of how this is done depends on your chosen payment option, but it generally all boils down to providing a few details and how much money you want. If you have ever bought anything online, you should know what to expect here. Select the event you want to bet on — Horse racing events should be easy to find on the sportsbook.
There is usually a tab of current live events as well as a list of available sports. Go there, find the event you want, and select it. Select your market — Same process here but now you are choosing the actual market and horse or horses you want to back. Select them and they should be added to your bet slip. Finish the transaction — On your bet slip you just need to enter your stake , confirm your bet and you are good to go.
Hopefully, you have now got a sense of what horse racing is about, and you are ready to approach these markets with confidence thanks to our horse racing guide. But to do so, you will need to know what you can bet on. Here, we are going to break down the two main categorisations of horse racing bets alongside the actual markets. These are thus called because they are the most straightforward option here. That makes them perfect for those of you who are just learning the ropes.
Here are some examples of horse racing straight bets. Steeplechases sometimes include water jumps and ditches too, which can add a considerable amount of excitement and nail-biting tension for bettors — will your horse be up to the challenges ahead? Before you go ahead and place bet on the race and horse of your choice, you should consider the classifications that are allocated to the horses.
Grade 1 is the top classification, in which the best horses that are considered most valuable are placed. There is a total of 3 grades, then listed and handicap races. Handicaps means that the quality of the horse dictates the weight it should carry — with the best horses being expected to be able to bear the most weight while maintaining good form. To help you to understand our horse racing betting guide, we have created an example of the steps that you might take in placing a successful bet.
Bookmaker Our Test Result Max. KYC Verified. UK new customers only. New depositing players on STSbets. First deposit min. Qualifying bet: min. Deposit method restrictions. Bonus valid for 7 days. This offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. New customers only. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Free bets are only valid for the specified race and are awarded when the qualifying bet has been settled. Free bet stakes not returned with winnings.
Once the bonus is credited to your account, losses will be refunded up to the bonus amount. To withdraw rebated funds, you must bet at least the qualifying deposit on any combination of markets within the promotional period; otherwise rebated funds will be forfeited. Unused bonuses expire after seven days of being credited to a user account and will be removed after this period.
The sign up offer is strictly limited to one per individual, family, household address, email address, same payment account number, and shared computer. This promotion cannot be used in conjunction with any other sign-up promotion. Smarkets standard terms for promotions apply. Wager the Casino Bonus 35x to withdraw winnings. Payment Cards only. Our horse racing betting guide is all about explaining how to bet specifically on horses, but there is a huge range of alternative ways to wager on sports.
Football betting is one of the most popular ways to put your money on who you think will be the winner, and there are a whole host of different kinds of ways to do this — from a simple bet on your team to win, to matched betting, handicap betting and much more. Bookmakers today take bets on almost every sport imaginable, including the following: boxing, baseball, tennis, basketball, cricket, rugby, esports, ice hockey, cricket, Formula 1, golf, snooker, martial arts, volleyball, and much more.
Our betting on horses guide would not be complete without some information on the best bookmakers for a horse win. Fortunately, because horse racing is such a popular and well-loved sport for betting — there are lots of options when it comes to bookmakers. Because there is so much choice, the bookmakers often offer very competitive odds to ensure that you choose to bet with them — and this means that you can make decent profits if you win.
Read on to find out about our top three bookmakers for a bet horse that might net you a profit. Betway is one of the longer established bookmakers that takes wagers on a range of horse racing events. Established in , the operator is a popular choice with bettors for horse racing, not least because they offer decent odds — but also a whole raft of regular horse-racing specific promotions to help you get more from your bets.
There are regular special offers for horse racing fans that can help you to minimise your losses and get more bets for your deposits. From there, you can also access live streaming of many of the top events — so that you can watch the action to see if your bet comes in.
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If you aren't exactly sure how it all works, don't you worry -- we're here to help you get up to speed. If you don't particularly understand the process or the terminology of betting we know it can be a bit confusing , we've got you covered with a handy cheat sheet.
Who wins the Preakness? And which underdog is a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to get Jody Demling's Preakness Stakes winner, see which long shot contends, and get the finish positions for every single horse, all from the expert who's nailed nine of the past 15 Preakness winners. An important disclaimer, though: Knowing the terminology doesn't guarantee you success in your wagers.
Sometimes, ignorance is bliss You're betting on a horse to win the race. Obviously, some of those are more challenging endeavors than others so, as is always the case with gambling, play the odds at your own peril. By Pete Blackburn.
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