How to Bet Horse Races And Understand Past Performance
Unique among all other sports, horse racing from a fan's perspective is a sport designed for betting. It's likely that the very first horse race occured when one guy sitting on a horse said to another guy sitting on a horse "I bet my horse is faster....", and, thus, a sport was born. The problem for newcomers to the sport, however, is simply understanding how to bet, what all the information on the horses in the program or racing form means, and how to strategize the various betting options available. While it's perfectly acceptable to enjoy a day at the races making $2 bets based on a horse's name, lucky number or favorite color of jockey silks, learning how to handicap horse racing and delving into the information available to make betting picks is a large part of the fun and satisfaction of playing the game. So here we provide a detailed look at how to understand handicapping information, and how to develop a solid betting strategy for horse racing.
How to Read the Past Performance Program
The Past Performance information - often called PPs, or The Form - is the single most essential tool for handicapping a horse race. While there are several versions of PPs available for a particular race, in general the PPs will tell you everything you need to know about a specific horse's past races, overall racing record, details on split times and finishes in past races, the racing surface (dirt, turf or synthetic) and location of past races, the class level of the races, jockey and trainer information, and much more. The essence of handicapping horse racing is to then take the information provided for each horse in a race, compare the horses' past performance with the past performance of all the other horses in the race, and use that information to predict what will happen in the race you want to bet.
Horse Racing Betting Tips
Straight bets, exotic bets, Daily Doubles, wheels and keys - these are all terms that come into play when betting on horse racing. Of course, the most obvious and self explanatory bet is to Win, but a Win bet doesn't often give the best return on investment, particularly if the winner is a very strong favorite in the race with low odds. For that reason, it's important for horseplayers to understand all the betting options available, and when and how to bet them.