How to Bet on Horse Racing for Newbies

January 13, 2021

Horse racing betting has been a pastime for centuries now, which means it’s still popular today as it has been back in the day. The thrill of watching the horse that you bet on passing by other horses for the lead is exhilarating, especially when you experience the whole thing live.

Moreover, most people who go to the stadium to watch the horses race are there just to bet on them, not for the sport itself. It’s understandable, though. Once you get a taste of your first win, it will be hard for you to quit. 

However, if you want to bet on horse racing but don’t know where to start, you’re in the right place. As a newbie, you can’t just start looking up data, say, the Pegasus Cup odds, before making a bet. Hence, this article will discuss the most fundamental parts of betting on horses to get you started on your betting career in horse racing.

Do Your Research

Thousands of people bet on horse racing every day, meaning that millions of dollars are being spent on bets. However, only a small number of people go out of their way to research before spending their money on a bet. It’s unfortunate, too, because even if you just glance at the racing form, you’ll have plenty of information to go about that will give you an advantage.

You can start your research on the racing form, sometimes called form guides. These form guides will give you all the information you need about the program, like the contenders, their jockeys, and even their track records. With this information, you will indeed have at least an educated guess as to which of the horses have the highest possibility to win.

One of the most important things that you should look at first in the form guides are the horses’ track record. Knowing which of the horses are consistently on the top three in their recent races is mostly a good indicator that a horse will likely win. However, it would help if you also remember that every race is different, which means that the factors aren’t always the same as the last one.

Listen to the Veterans

If you have a friend who has been betting on horseracing forever, you can ask them for tips on how to bet efficiently. Always remember that veterans are called for veterans for a reason. And that reason is that they know the ins and outs of horse racing betting and how to last longer in their careers.

However, it would help if you also remembered that every bettor has their own opinions on how to win the game, so take their tips with a grain of salt. With your research and the tips you got from them, you can analyze your strategy about making the most out of your money in a bet.

Which Betting Game to Play

One of the main reasons people stray away from any sports betting is they can’t understand the bets themselves. Understanding how each different bet works is like trying to understand a foreign language for the first time for a newbie. 

Hence, here is a simplified version of the most popular bets available in horse racing.

Win, Place, Show

Win, place, and how bets are pretty straightforward. These bets are the top three most popular types of bets in horse racing because they are easy to understand and easy to win. For the win bet, you have to pick a horse that you think will win the race. 

In place betting, you pick a horse and try to predict if it will win first or second. However, finishing first will not give you extra winnings. A show bet is similar, albeit the horse you bet on is supposed to finish in the top three for you to win the bet.

Exotic Betting

Exotic betting is quite advanced. The gist of it is you have to place a bet on more than one outcome in a single race. This means that you have to pick two horses in the same race. There are different types of exotic bets with different parameters. Here are some of them.

  • Quinella

Quinella is a bet where you have to wager on two different horses you think will come in first or second. It doesn’t matter which one got the first place, as long as they are in the top two.

  • Exacta

This is similar to quinella, albeit you have to predict the exact order the horses will finish. You will pick which horse will come first and second, and you lose the bet if they are in the wrong order.

  • Trifecta

Trifecta is similar to an exacta, but you have to pick your top three horses on this bet. This means that you have to pick three horses which you think will come first, second, and third. If you got the correct horses, but in the wrong order, you lose the bet.


Of course, to understand the whole gist of horse racing betting, you have to research more on the topic. This is only a simplified explanation of how to start your betting career. If you want the more advanced stuff, you have to dig deeper. But if you’re a newbie and are willing to start with the basics first, then this article is a good start.

@PastTheWire @jonathanstettin if you ever want to share HOW you consistently pick winners that win by 6, and still get 7/2, let me know!

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