August 18, 2014 by
The horse racing industry in the United States brings in over $26 billion each year.
Horse racing provides a full spectrum of entertainment unlike any other sport. Whether your horse wins or loses, spending a day at the races makes for a great afternoon or evening outdoors watching beautiful animals compete.
The Tradition of Horse Racing
Horse racing has been a long standing tradition among many cultures. The sport dates back all the way to 4500 BC among nomadic tribesmen in Central Asia, who first domesticated horses. Archeological records reveal that the Ancient Greeks, Syrians, Babylonians, and Egyptians also participated in horse racing to entertain the masses and honor outstanding horsemanship required for battles. Later horse racing became popular among British royalty and aristocracy where it received the nickname “Sport of Kings”.
These days, horse racing represents one of the only legal forms of gambling around the world, including Great Britain, Ireland, Canada, the United States, South America, the Middle East, and Australia. Read the rest of this entry →
August 11, 2014 by
Now that the calendar has turned to August, the eyes of the racing world have turned to the historic Saratoga Race Course in beautiful Saratoga Springs, N.Y. This town is wonderful to visit any time of the year, but it really springs to life during the summer racing meet, when top thoroughbreds converge to compete in top-quality races.
Saratoga has been hosting summer races since 1863, and over the years it has become known as the “graveyard of champions.” This refers to the fact that many times, horses that seemed invincible went down in stunning defeat. Although races like these can lead to huge payoffs for bettors, it comes at great expense to champion horses. Two of these horses share that history and also the nickname of Big Red. They were Man ‘o War and Secretariat.
Man o’ War Melts
Man o’ War was a stunning chestnut colt who raced in the years 1919 and 1920. When he competed in the Sanford Stakes for 2-year-olds on Aug. 13, 1919, his reputation was already such that he seemed a lock to win. His previous six victories were so impressive that it seemed it was impossible for him to lose. In fact, this was the only race that he ever would lose in his entire racing career.
Starting gates were not used at this time, and starters had to make sure horses were properly lined up behind a tape barrier and ready to race. Unfortunately for Man o’ War, the tape was sprung when he was apparently backing up. Essentially, he was left at the start. Read the rest of this entry →
July 11, 2014 by
With the defeat of California Chrome in the Belmont Stakes, we were robbed of witnessing one of the greatest accomplishments in American Sports: the completion of the Triple Crown. Only eleven horses have won the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes — the three races that make up that vaunted title. Some names of Triple Crown winners are more memorable than others, but let’s take a look at three of the most notable.
Sir Barton was the first horse to win the Triple Crown, when he won the Belmont Stakes in 1919. Originally, Sir Barton was just supposed to be the pacemaker for a higher regarded horse named Billy Kelly, but that all changed when Sir Barton won the Triple Crown by five lengths. He never trailed in any of the races he competed in, but somehow Sir Barton never really got the recognition he deserved.
His legacy was somewhat marred when he lost a match race against the famous Man o’ War. Sir Barton had some hoof problems that were compounded by the track’s hard surface, which led to his seven length loss to Man o’ War. Still, being the first ever Triple Crown Winner is something Sir Barton could be very proud of. Read the rest of this entry →
May 17, 2014 by
California Chrome will look to break the 36 year drought of Triple Crown champions.
It is very likely that you had no idea that the Preakness Stakes was held this afternoon near Baltimore. However, now that California Chrome has won the first two legs of the Triple Crown you can guarantee that you will hear plenty about the Belmont Stakes, which will be held on June 7th.
While all but the most die-hard of sports fans generally don’t pay much attention to the three triple crown horse races contested over a five year period from early May through early June each year, there is still a little magic left in the idea of the Triple Crown.
Always recognized as an amazing accomplishment, it has been 36 years since a horse has been able to win the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont in the same year. Since Affirmed became the 11th horse to accomplish the feat in 1978 (ironically the third horse to do it in five years following Secretariat and Seattle Slew), 12 horses have won the first two races, but failed to capture the most physically demanding and longest of the three races.
The first few times that a horse fell short – Spectacular Bid in 1979, Pleasant Colony in 1981, Alysheba in 1987 and Sunday Silence in 1989 – the failure wasn’t necessarily a huge deal as it had only been a few years since the last Triple Crown and each had come pretty close to joining the elite club. Read the rest of this entry →
February 19, 2013 by
The Aintree Racetrack offers challenge for both the jockey and horse.
While the Kentucky Derby is the best known horse racing event in the United States, a month prior to the Derby, Liverpool, England will serve as the host for a very different, yet equally exciting horse racing spectacle. The 2013 John Smith’s Aintree Grand National Hunt race is the world’s most popular steeplechase event.
Originally held at the Aintree Racetrack in 1839, the 2013 event is slated for April 6th and serves as the culmination of the three-day Aintree Festival.
The Grand National provides a unique set of challenges that only the best jockeys and horses can conquer.
The racecourse is triangular in shape and includes 16 fences, all except The Chair and the Water Jump are jumped twice. The course has a reputation as the ultimate test of horse and jockey, and just completing the two circuits is considered a great accomplishment. Some of the fences are famous for their difficulty, most specifically Becher’s Brook, The Chair, and the Canal Turn.
Unlike the Kentucky Derby and American Triple Crown, which includes the best three-year-old horses, the Aintree Grand National is typically won by a horse with far more years and experience.
In 2012 11-year-old Neptune Collonges, ridden by jockey Daryl Jacob for trainer Paul Nicholls and owner John Hales was able to conquer the challenging track and claim victory in the Grand National. He was the oldest winner of the Grand National since 12-year-old Amberleigh House in 2004.
The oldest horse to win the Grand National was 15-year-old Peter Simple in 1853. Since 1994 the youngest horse to win the race was eight-year-old Bindaree in 2002 and the race has been won 12 times in that stretch by a horse with double-digits in the age column.
For many, one of the great allures of this annual event is the many betting opportunities and certainly the recent history of older winners is one thing for those who enjoy betting on this exciting event to consider as they ponder which horse and jockey they will support. Through William Hill Grand National 2013 you can watch all the races of the three-day festivities through livestreaming and also keep track of the latest betting odds and opportunities.
August 23, 2012 by
Where will Frankel run next?
After Frankel’s incredible performance at York on Wednesday afternoon, where he stormed to victory by seven lengths, questions are now arising as to whether he will run in the Prix de L’Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp on October 7th.
Those assessing Racing tips from Bet Victor note how the Juddmonte International Stakes was the first time Frankel had ran over a mile, but he was still the red-hot favourite to come out on top and did not disappoint.
Owner Prince Khalid Abdullah has now hinted that is it possible that the four-year-old may now compete in the Arc, but he will hold talks with Sir Henry Cecil before making any final decisions.
He said: “I will talk to Henry and, if he thinks so, we will take him there.”
Frankel does not currently hold entry for the Arc though and it is being suggested that Prix du Moulin at Longchamp next month and either the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes or Champions Stake at Ascot in October are the more likely races that he will compete in before retirement to stud at the end of the campaign. Read the rest of this entry →