Horse Betting terms

Abandoned: A race that has been abandoned, normally due to bad weather conditions. All bets are void in such circumstances

Accumulator: A multiple bet that involves more than one horse, usually requiring all your horses to win or place in order to be successful.

Allowance: A weight reduction permitted to horses dependent on race conditions.

All-Weather: A term for an artificial track that can be raced on throughout the year in all weather conditions.

Ante-Post: This is when you place a bet on a race ahead of the race day, before final runners are declared.

Apprentice: A term referring to a young jockey learning his trade. Apprentice jockeys can often claim a weight allowance dependent on experience

At The Post: Refers to when the horses in a race are down at the starting stalls of a race.

Back: A term for betting in favour of a horse winning.

Banker: A term used to describe a strongly favoured horse in a race. If they are a ‘banker’, they’re considered the horse that’s most likely to win.

Betting Ring: The designated area of a racecourse where you’ll find the bookmakers.

Black Type: Refers to group/pattern races, a horse that has placed in one of these races in printed in bold black type in sales catalogues.

Blinkers: A piece of material worn over the horse’s head to restrict its peripheral vision. Blinkers are worn to prevent a horse from becoming distracted.

Board Prices: A horse racing betting term for the prices displayed by official bookmakers, from which prices are then decided.

Bottle: Horse racing terminology for a horse with 2/1 odds.

Burlington Bertie: Horse racing jargon for a horse with odds of 100/30.

Bumper: A type of flat race run under National Hunt rules for jump horses to gain racing experience before they go jumping. Also referred to as National Hunt Flat (NHF) races.

Carpet: Horse racing slang for a horse with 3/1 odds.

Canadian: Also known as a Super Yankee, the Canadian is a multiple bet consisting of 26 bets: 10 doubles, 10 trebles, 5-fourfold accumulators and 1 fivefold accumulator.

Chaser: A horse that takes part in Steeple Chases.

Claimer: Refers to a race in which a horse’s weight is chosen by the trainer. This directly corelates with the claiming price of the horse. All horses can be claimed (sold) post-race.

Classic: A word used to describe Classic races. There are five classic races in the UK each year: 1,000 Guineas, 2,000 Guineas, Oaks, Derby, and St. Leger. All races are restricted to horses aged 3.

Clerk of the Course: The person responsible for upkeep of the course.

Closer: A horse that tends to run better in the latter stages of the race, often from the back of the field.

Colours/Silks: Exclusive riding outfits worn by jockeys to represent the chosen colours of the horses owners

Colt: A young male horse (usually younger than four years old) that hasn’t been castrated.

Conditional Jockey: A horse racing term for an apprentice National Hunt jockey.

Co-favourite: The title given to more than three horses that are equally likely to win a race and have the lowest odds.

Connections: This generally refers to the owner(s) and trainer(s) of the horse. Those connected to the horse.

Course Specialist: A horse that has either won or set a good time at a specific racecourse before.

Dam: The mother of a horse.

Dead Heat: When two or more horses cross the finish line at exactly the same time.

Distance: Usually refers to the length of a race or the amount of ground covered by a horse.

Draw: In flat racing, this refers to the horses’ position in the starting stalls.

Drift: When a horse’s odds are on the drift (increase), implying weakness in the betting.

Each-way: Refers to a bet that involves half your stake on the win and half on the place.

Even Money: A horse racing betting term for a stake that brings equal money back.

Exacta: When you bet on horses to finish in first and second position in an exact order. Also referred to as a Forecast.

Favourite: The favourite is the selection deemed most likely to win a race by virtue of the fact it has the shortest odds.

Field: Refers to a field of runners, being the line-up of horses in a race

Filly: A young female horse of up to four years old.

Forecast Bet: When you bet on a selected number of horses to finish first and second in an exact order.

Furlong: A distance equal to 220 yards. A mile consists of approximately 8 furlongs.

Front-runner: A horse whose benefits from being at the front of the field of runners, often trying to lead the race from the start.

Gelding: A male horse that has been castrated/gelded in order to improve its temperament.

Going: A term that describes the condition of the race course surface, ranging from heavy to firm.

Green:  A horse may run green, generally meaning it shows a lack of racing experience.

Group Race: Group Races are the highest level of races for thoroughbred horses. They are known as Grade races in the USA.

Handicap Race: Where horses carry different weights, reflective of their ability with the aim of producing an even race.

Joint-favourite: Two horses that have the joint shortest odds in a race

Jolly: The favourite horse in any given race.

Judge: The person who decides the finishing order of the race.

Juvenile: A two-year-old horse.

Length: A racing measurement used to determine distances between each horse in the race. A length is considered the length of a horse.

Long Shot: A horse with high odds that is considered to have only a small chance of winning the race.

Maiden: A horse that hasn’t won a race.

National Hunt: Another name for jumps racing.

NAP: Usually the best bet from a tipster across a race meeting or day.

Non-runner: A horse originally declared to run that is now no longer running.

Nose: The shortest distance by which a horse can win a race. You will hear the phrase beaten by a nose.

Nursery: Refers to a handicap for horses under the age of two.

Objection: When one jockey makes a formal complaint about another rider.

Odds On: A horse racing betting term for when the profit of a bet is less than the initial stake put on. Odds on refers to horses shorter than Even money.

Off the Bridle / On the Bridle: A term used to a describe whether the horse still has the bridle in its mouth when racing. On the birdle can refer to a horse traveling well in a race.

Official Rating: The rating assigned to the horse by the local racing authority. The higher the rating, the better the horse.

Photo Finish: A photo taken at the end of the race that is used to determine the winner if two horses are too close together.

Placepot: A pool bet based around selecting horses to place in several races at a specific meeting.

Plate: A horse’s racing shoe. Occasionally a horse may spread a plate meaning its horseshoe has separated from its hoof.

Racecard: The programme of the day’s races from a specific meeting/racecourse.

Raider: Refers to a horse racing in a different country to which it is trained.

Rule 4: A racing term for when a non-runner is declared and an adjustment is made to the initial odds you got on a bet.

Selling Race: A race in which the winner is auctioned post-race.

Sire: The father of a horse.

Starting Price (SP): The official odds at which a horse started a race.

Stewards: A group of officials who ensure that racing rules are adhered to. A steward’s enquiry will mean the stewards are investigating an infraction of the rules.

Tic-Tac: Hand signals used by bookmakers to converse with each other.

Trixie: A Trixie bet consists of four bets over three horses. These are three doubles and one treble.

Under Orders: Refers to the moment prior to a race where horses are under the starters orders, ready to race

Walkover: A race where only one horse takes part.

Yearling: A horse between the age of one and two years old.