How to bet successfully on Horse Racing


People have been betting on horse racing for centuries, with Classic races such as The Oaks, The Derby and the St Leger steeped in history, although the sport remains as popular as ever in the present day.

Particularly popular in the UK, Ireland, USA and Australia, betting customers visit online betting websites on a daily basis where they will select the latest race meetings and aim to pick out a few winners.

Flat racing or National Hunt?

The UK and Irish race calendar is largely split into two segments. There is the flat season which traditionally takes place in the summer months and then the National Hunt season which takes place in winter and the spring.

The main difference between the two sports is that National Hunt features obstacles whether they come in the form of hurdles or fences. Hurdles are the smaller obstacles whereas you’re more likely to have horse falling going over fences.

When it comes to betting on flat or National Hunt racing, the rules and the bet types are pretty much the same.

Popular horse racing bets to have

People like backing winners and a lot of customers therefore set out to choose a horse that is going to win that particular race. If you’re betting win-only, then you place one bet and that will result in a winner if that particular horse is first past the post.

Alternatively, you can back a horse each-way in a particular race. That is effectively two bets; with one, you are betting win-only and with the other, you are betting for the horse to place. Placing involves finishing in second, third or fourth although this does depend on the number of runners in that particular race.

If you back a horse each-way and it finishes first in a race, then you win on both bets whereas if the horse merely places, then you win the place part of your each-way bet.

Some people go for more exotic bets when it comes to horse racing. You can have a multiple bet such as a double or treble where you combine a number of horses to win their particular races. Please note that these horses must be entered in different races.

You can also have an accumulator where you choose several horses in one bet. There are also bets such as a Trixie and a Yankee where you have a selection of bets on a few horses. The more horses that win, the more money you make.

How to pick the right horse

It’s customer v bookmaker and the bottom line is that a horse has always got to win a particular race. You regularly get “the favourite” which is the runner at the shortest odds which suggests it has the strongest chance of winning. However, this is not always the case and it sometimes pays to look outside the shorter priced horses.

You can easily access the latest form guide at a bookmaker website, indicating how a horse has performed on its last few outings. You can also see key information relating to the trainer and jockey, while many bookies also show whether the horse’s odds are on the drift or if the runner is being backed in.

Many horse racing fans follow the sport all year round and have a good idea of which stables are in form and which are the best trainers and jockeys to follow.

Sometimes a horse might be “good value” at the particular odds. For example, a runner might be 10.00 (9/1) but you think it has a stronger chance of winning than the odds suggest. If you’re accurate, then it pays to back horses at perceived value as you only need one 10.00 (9/1) winner every nine times to make a profit.

What are the biggest UK race meetings?

The Cheltenham Festival is the jewel in the crown when it comes to the National Hunt season. This is a four-day event which includes the Champion Hurdle, Queen Mother Champion Chase, World Hurdle and Gold Cup plus several other Grade One races.

Cheltenham also hosts several other high-profile meetings throughout the racing season, with some of the best horses in the world entered in several different races.

The flat equivalent to the Cheltenham Festival is probably Royal Ascot which is a five-day meeting and there are mouth-watering amounts of prize money available for the winning connections.

Other prominent meetings include Glorious Goodwood, Epsom, Punchestown and the Tingle Creek meeting.

Live streaming on racing available

Many bookmakers such as bet365, William Hill , Unibet , Paddy Power and 888sport offer live streaming for the UK and Irish races, with customers needing to place a small bet on the race in question to access live pictures from the track.

It means that you can have a bet and then enjoy your horse in action, with the live streaming being supported across a range of platforms such as mobile phone, tablet, laptop and personal computer.