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RacingBetter News
Monday 18th May 2020
The World of Horse Racing and Online Betting

Modern horse racing is about 400 years old, having started during the rule of King James I in Great Britain. Although historians suspect its roots to have extended much earlier into the eras of ancient Greece, Rome and Babylon where chariot racing precedented the jockey-horse racing that most are familiar with in this day and age. British colonialists then settled in America and brought horse racing in 1665 to New York with the establishment of the first racing track in Long Island. Today there are a range of different kinds of horse races, mostly variations of the 5 main kinds. Flat racing, where the horse simply races from start to finish in a flat or oval track, is the most popular racing wherein betting is placed. There is also jump racing that includes obstacles in the racetrack, harness racing that involves the horse racing and pulling its driver in a cart called a sulky, saddle trotting that includes saddles in racing and endurance racing that requires long-distance track (in the range of 50 and 160 km). It is pretty clear that this sport involves fine mastership and skill and symbolizes the ancient relationship between man and horse that undeniably factored in our progression as a species. If you’re new to betting in the horse racing world, this article may serve to help you find your feet in a surprisingly accessible realm.

horse racing

How does horse race betting work?

Betting is popularized by region. In North America the most popular forms of betting are: win, place and show. These kinds of bets are referred as ‘straight wagers’ which focus betting on one horse at a time.A win bet is betting on a particular horse securing first place victory. A place bet settles for either first or second place and a show bet allows placement in the top three positions (1st, 2nd or 3rd). Obviously the first bet is higher risk and thus has a greater payout and the last has less risk so won’t be as financially rewarding. Placing bets work differently in other continents too. In Europe and Australia, place bets correlate to the number of horses participating in the race. The smaller the number, the narrower the winning positions and vice versa. Each way (E/W) refers to a split bet where the bettor can claim a sort of 2-in-1 deal and bet on both a win and place bet, putting half the total amount on each respective bet. E/W is practiced everywhere except in North America. Beyond straight wagers, are vertical and horizontal exotic wagers. Exotic wagers extend to the betting of more than one horse at a time, where horizontal betting focuses on one specific race and vertical focuses on multiple horse betting in multiple races.

Horse racing in the UK

The Tote is the UK’s pari-mutuel system- a system that involves wagering against other bettors whereby the total payout depends on the number of bettors involved in the bet and is equally split amongst them once the race is concluded and results have been determined. The tote, however, only accumulates to 5% of the country's horse racing betting turnover.  With an astounding 4.3 billion Euro turnover rate between 2017 and 2018, it would seem that fixed-odds betting is the most popular form of horse race betting amongst British nationals. Fixed-odds betting is betting against a bookmaker (online or shop-based betting platforms) and is popularized off-track. The UK has taken a firmer stance against FOBTs (Fixed-odds betting terminals) in 2019 due to the alleged degradation of it’s working class and those who are vulnerable and desperate to turn to gambling as a means of income. However this seems to be specifically focused on gambling machines and shops and not so much the online gambling community. The British government loses its tax income on the machines but plans to make up for this loss online, which pretty much secures the betting world for those who operate online. Now seems to be the best time to join the online bettors, billions of people are doing this for a reason- to be sure. Which brings us to our next enquiry:

How does online horse race betting work?

It’s actually far more straightforward than one would expect. The first step requires you to find a credible online betting host/ site and creating an account with them. One you have an account, linked up to your preferred method of payment, you can put a minimum deposit down that will allow you to freely place bets on said online platform. You then need to find the horse racing page (as many platforms have more than one kind of sport on which to bet) and you will be greeted with a number of races taking place on that day or in the future. After selecting your race, you will be confronted with the kind of wager or bet you’d like to place (as aforementioned above) and will need to choose the lucky horse you think has the best odds of winning. Once your racing bets have been placed and added to your bet slip, you can confirm which will deduct from the deposit you paid within the account you made. Any winnings will be credited to your account and you’re able to withdraw them at any point (with most online bookmakers).