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A Guide to Betting on Horse Racing

Horse Racing Guide

Betting on Horse Racing is Popular Worldwide

Horse racing is one of the most popular sports in the world, particularly for those who enjoy sports betting. With events taking place on virtually every day of the year around the world, there’s always something to watch and place a wager on – here’s a guide to betting on horse racing for those who are new to the sport.

What Should You Know About Horse Racing?

There are over ten major horse racing tracks across the UK, including Ayr, Kempton Park, Sandown, Lingfield and Wolverhampton. On every day of the year, there are at least three tracks hosting up to ten races each, so punters have the choice of as many as 30 races in the UK every day. The most prestigious races in the UK are Cheltenham Festival, the Grand National, Royal Ascot and Glorious Goodwood, which take place in March, April, June and August respectively.

What are the Types of Horse Racing?

There are two types of horse racing to bet on – flat and jump. Flat racing refers to races where there are no hurdles or fences for the horses to overcome, so it’s a pure sprint to the finish line. Jump racing, as the name suggests, refers to obstacles that the horses have to tackle on their way around the track such as fences or ditches. When there are fences as the obstacles, the race is referred to as a steeplechase.

Betting Terminology and How to Get Started

The starting price of a race is the odds of the horse when the race starts, and this is determined by the on-course bookmakers. Punters will be given the option to bet on the starting price in advance, usually more than 24 hours before it begins, while the bookmakers are deciding the odds. However, avoid betting on the starting price as you won’t know the actual odds you’ll receive so it’s impossible to bet accurately, also if you’re a first time better it may be advisable to try something like a Betfair free bet, to learn the ropes before putting your money down.

Each way betting refers to betting on your horse finishing in the top positions – usually, this means in the top 2, 3 or 4horses in the race, depending on how many horses are racing. In order to place an each way bet, when you bet a certain amount on a horse to win, you can also place an additional amount on the horse to place second, third or fourth for reduced odds. For example, if you bet £5 on each bet, your combined stake is £10.

In place only betting, you bet on a specific horse to finish second or third. A multiple bet provides a larger pay out from a relatively small stake but with much more risk. There are several types of multiple bet, including a Double (two horses combined, both needing to win for you to receive a return on your bet), a Treble (three horses combined, all of which need to be successful) and a Trixie (three horses combined in three doubles and one treble, resulting in four bets in total).


Dirty has been an employee or owner of some of the top online sports gambling forums since 1998. He worked at EOG.com from it's inception until 2008 when he left and opened GamblingIQ and then in 2012 opened Handicappers Hidaway. He has written hundreds af articles over the years and always has his "Dirty Dozen" College Football poll up starting the first week of October.
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