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Horse racing: what you need to know before you start betting?
Published at 8/21/2020
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The names of British arrivals at times appear to be very puzzling. It seems impossible to understand them until you learn the language of Shakespeare as your native language. In fact, it is enough to learn a few keywords in order to navigate the race.

There are two types of horse racing in Britain – flat and jump racing. Trotting races, when a horse is harnessed to a carriage, are not practiced at a serious level here, and bets are not accepted on them.

In flat racing, racehorses usually start performing at the age of two years, whereas jump racing begins at 3-4 years. 

Which road leads horses to the Epsom Derby or the Cheltenham Festival?

The career of horses in flat races usually begins with the maiden race. Maiden means that the horse has never won. Racehorses can perform in "maidens" an unlimited number of times. Someone manages to win immediately, less able are in "maidens" for months and even years. The prize money in such races is low, which is two or three thousand pounds.

Having won the maiden race or having made several such races without winning, but at least proving their professional aptitude, the horses are transferred to handicaps. This is the most popular type of horse racing.

In a handicap, each horse receives a certain weight load. This helps to equalise the chances of participants. The most talented are the most respected. The best horse with the biggest load always goes on the race card at number 1. And then it goes on a downward path. The horse at the bottom of the list carries the lowest weight and is considered the least capable. A good comparison is Royal1688, where a variance is the level of risk in slot machines. This indicator depends on the frequency of the formation of the winning combinations and the prizes for each category. Players can choose a slot with a certain variance based on their own capabilities, desire to take risks, and goals.

Some players, by the way, bet exclusively on the first few numbers in handicaps. And this strategy works quite well. But the horses from the last lines do not win so often.

Handicaps are divided into six classes: 

• First-class (Class 1) – the highest, these are the best quality horses. 

• Sixth grade (Class 6) – the lowest. 

A horse can start with low handicap classes and gradually climb up

Class 1 is the elite of British racing. These are the races that the whole country looks at and discusses, and the biggest bets are placed on them.

Interestingly, Class 1 also has its own "ladder" inside. The first class is divided into races:

• Listed

• Group 3, 

• Group 2 

• Group 1.

Listed races are a transitional stage from simple handicaps to prestigious groups 1, 2, and 3 races. It is an honor for any horse to be featured in such a race, and it says a lot about their talents. And if you win Listed, you will get into Group level races and win hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Group 1 jumps are the top of the pyramid. This is the Epsom Derby, some races of the Royal Ascot series, etc. group 2 and group 3 Races are slightly lower, but also extremely prestigious, and the prize money in them is lucrative.

So here it is, a horse track in smooth racing: maiden => handicap => Listed => Group 3 => Group 2 => Group 1. Of course, it is rare for someone to have all the stages in their career. The max of most horses is middle-class handicaps. And prodigies can jump from "maidens" immediately to Class 1.

In jump racing everything's similar

As in the flat series, here, too, most races are handicaps, and they are divided into six classes. There are also "maiden" and "Listed" races here. Well, for the highest-level races in jump racing, "Grade" is used instead of the word "Group." The highest level of British jump races is Grade 1.

The name of a hurdle race must contain the words hurdle or chase. These terms indicate the type of obstacle. A hurdle is a low flimsy fence up to a meter high. Chase is a race with high solid barriers, known in Russian as "steeplechase".

The only exception to the "either hurdle or chase" rule is the National Hunt Flat Race category. This is a smooth jump in the barrier series, which is a preparatory race for beginners. Such races are held on barrier racetracks, bypassing obstacles, usually at the end of the race day.

For those who want to bet on jump races, it is also useful to know the word "novice". This is how newcomers are defined, those who have little experience or few wins in a particular type of horse race. There are many novices hurdle races in Britain and Ireland, as well as novices chase.

And a few more words that will help you navigate. If the name of the race has the word fillies or mares, this race is only for mares. The words apprentice and conditional indicate that only novice jockeys participate in the race.

The amount of money you win depends on the chosen strategy. We will talk about the rules and tricks of betting on horses in future articles!


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