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Horse Racing: How to Develop Your Understand Of The Sport of Kings

Horse Racing

It’s easy to enjoy a horse race at a surface level, but if you want to really understand the sport, you’ll need to dive a little deeper. As with most things, the more you know about horse racing, the more interesting it will be.

Indeed, take the time to develop your understanding, and you might just find that you ignite what will become a lifelong passion. In this day and age, it’s never been easier to learn about the sport. Experts regularly post their in-depth insights, which helps amateurs develop their thinking; sites like oddschecker list daily horse racing results, so you can always keep up with the action; and then there’s the matter of horse racing festivals, which are more accessible than ever. These, plus the other tips outlined below, can help anyone become something of a horse racing aficionado. 

Learn the Different Types of Horse Races

If you’ve only watched horse racing on a casual basis, then you might think that all races are the same. But actually, that’s not the case. There are several different types, though the only two that you’re likely to come across are flat racing and national hunt. The setup of the race is the same in both types, but national hunt racing features jumps, which changes the nature of the race. 



Most horse racing fans watch both types of races but tend to have a preference for one more than the other.

Tune In 

They say that if you want to understand art, you should look at a thousand paintings. The same principle applies to horse racing. The more races that you watch, the more that you’ll understand. In this day and age, it couldn’t be easier to tune into races that take place around the world since many are televised. Make a habit of watching races, and it won’t be long before you understand the sport on a deeper level. 



Attending Races

Of course, while you’ll learn plenty from watching horse racing on television, if you really want to know the sport, it’s recommended that you attend one of the major horse racing festivals. There are plenty to choose from! For one thing, it’s just more fun to see a race in the flesh; it really helps to give you a sense of how powerful horses are, as well as how intense races can be. Plus, you’ll learn more about the overall culture of the sport. Make a point of striking up a conversation at a bar, and you might just find that you learn a thing or two from the other attendees, too. 

Dive Into History

The history of horse racing is a big part of the appeal. This is a sport that’s steeped in history, and there are many legendary horses and jockeys that helped to make the sport what it is today. So take a look at educating yourself on who the big players of the past were. There are books and blogs you can read, and you’ll also want to check out some of history’s greatest races on YouTube. They’ll help to show just why some horses and jockeys are known as bona fide legends. 


It’s never been easier to learn about, well, anything. The internet has allowed people to dive deep into a topic in any way they see fit; reading, watching, or, yes, even listening. Podcasts have never been more popular than they are right now, so it should come as no surprise that there are plenty of horse racing podcasts to choose from. They all put their own spin on things, though the content is largely the same: they’ll talk about horse racing news and take a look at the upcoming events. Check out some of the most popular and find your favourite; it’ll become an invaluable resource on your journey towards becoming a horse racing expert! 

horse nose

Check the Results

You won’t have time to watch every race. After all, you do need to work and take care of other life duties! But it’s a good idea to keep up with the results, even if you weren’t able to watch the race. By checking who’s won and on what type of conditions, you’ll slowly develop your understanding of which horses seem to continually come out on top. There are websites that list the results of each race, so you can check the winners no matter where you are.

Read Expert Tips

It can take many years to develop an in-depth understanding of horse racing. If you keep up with your practice of following the sport, then eventually, you will become something of an expert yourself. But that’ll be in the future. For now, take a read of the opinions of people who have already developed their horse racing expertise. There are plenty of famous horse racing experts who publish their thoughts and insights online. Make a habit of reading them, and you’ll be well on your way toward building your horse racing education. 

Know The Trainers

It’s the horses and jockeys that most people tend to give the most attention to. But they’re only the public faces of the team. While they’re important, the most influential person behind a horse racing victory is the trainer. Indeed, there are some festivals where it’s the horses that have been trained by a particular trainer that continually come out on top. At the moment, Willie Mullins and Aiden O’Brien are the two biggest names, and it’s always worthwhile seeing which horses they have in a race -- and noticing how brilliant they usually perform.

Final Thoughts

Nobody becomes a horse racing expert overnight. It takes time. While the basic principles of horse racing are easy to understand, if you want to understand the sport on a deeper level, then you’ll need to put time and energy into learning the ins and outs of the sport. But this is no chore; it’s fun! And once you’ve done it, you’ll find that you can enjoy the sport much more than before. 


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