Horse Betting Tips

There are a number of ways smart handicappers bet horses online. Many of the methods used by the best bettors are referred to as angles. Sometimes a specific angle can create many betting opportunities at the racetrack. There are also some standard practices you can adopt to increase your chances of winning. Here is a list of the Top 20 EZ Horse Betting Tips.

No. 11—Learn to Read Past Performances

There is no way around this one. If you want to consistently earn money at the racetrack, you must learn to decipher the puzzle of past performances. Known as PPs, past performance charts are found in the Daily Racing Form and also available from services such as Equibase and Brisnet. These charts present detailed data on the most recent races of a specific horse. You will be able to see how they have finished, their race times, and also note brief comments on each race. PPs are different from a racetrack program in that they provide much more information. Also included in these charts are information on the horse’s jockey and trainer.


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No. 10—Beware of Hot Horse Harry

You will find a Hot Horse Harry at every racetrack in America and abroad. Hot Horse Harry likes to hover around the paddock, betting little or nothing, while telling everyone who will listen about the sure thing he knows about in an upcoming race. Another name for this type of individual is a tout. Touts are typically degenerate gamblers who are very poor handicappers. Some of them will even offer to give you a winning tip for a fee! These tips are almost always worthless. If Hot Horse Harry really had an inside track on a winning horse, he wouldn’t share that info because the price on the horse would go down sharply.

No. 9—Watch a Lot of Races

One of the best ways to become a proficient handicapper is to watch a lot of races. This used to be hard before the days of simulcast racing and the Internet. Today, you can watch many famous races from the past on YouTube. If you create an account with one of the online racebooks recommended by, you can also access libraries of past races to watch. It sometimes helps to clarify the information given in the past performances by watching a video of the actual race. You can see if the horse had trouble during the race that might excuse a poor outing. Many long-priced winners are found this way.

No. 8—Focus on a Specific Circuit

It can be very helpful to the beginning handicapper to narrow their focus to a specific circuit. A circuit is typically all of the racetracks in one state or area. For example, the California circuit would include tracks like Santa Anita and Del Mar. If you try to follow various tracks around the United States or around the world, the experience can be overwhelming. You also won’t have enough time to study each upcoming race properly. When you focus on one racing circuit you will become familiar with the trainers and jockeys that call the circuit home. When one track closes its meet, another one close by will open. In other words, you will encounter the same trainers, jockeys, and horses at Aqueduct in the winter that you were betting on at Belmont Park in the spring. This makes your job easier.

No. 7—Limit your Action Bets

An action bet is one made purely for the thrill of wagering on a race. There is nothing wrong with doing this occasionally. Even Andrew Beyer, the legendary handicapper and creator of the Beyer Speed Figures, says he makes one now and then. When you make an action bet you are playing a hunch or “taking a flyer” without much information or study. It is much better to take calculated risks and bet horses after you have studied the charts. The thing is, a single race card may only yield two or three races suitable for a bet on a given day. Some handicappers, like Beyer, get bored waiting for the next betting opportunity and make an action bet to sustain their enthusiasm.

No. 6—Make a Visit to the Backside

If you live near a live racetrack, take some time to visit the backside. The backside of a racetrack is where horses are kept and maintained. You’ll get to meet trainers and jockeys and observe first-hand how a horse is prepared for a race. Access to the backside of a racetrack is generally restricted to those individuals who possess a racing license. You’ll need to find someone you know that can sign you in as a guest. This isn’t hard. Most racetrack people are friendly and willing to give you a tour.

No. 5—Don’t Bet Every Race

Whether you are playing the horses online with a racebook or attending a live track, there is no obligation which says you must bet each race on the card. If you find that a race is very competitive and are having trouble picking a winner, simply skip that race and proceed to the next. Eventually, a betting opportunity will arise. One of the worst things a new handicapper can do is bet too much, too often.

No. 4—Have a Proper Bankroll

If you go to the racetrack with $20 in your pocket or make a $10 deposit in your online wagering account, you are asking for trouble. To begin, most racetrack bets are a minimum of $2. If you were to win 33% of your bets on a given day, that is enough to give you a nice profit when you bet the right horses. But you must realize that this is a good percentage you will fail to yield on most days. If you have moderately good handicapping skills, you can expect to cash one out of every three bets. But, as with all statistics, this represents what would happen if the betting were carried out to infinity. You might lose 4, 5, or 6 races in a row before he wins start coming in. You need enough money to sustain you through the bad stretches. A good rule of thumb is to have no less than 50X the minimum bet you will be making. So, if you are betting $2, you need a starting bankroll of $100.

No. 3—Don’t Bet to Show

A bet to Show sure seems like one of he easiest bets to make on the track. After all, your horse only needs to run third or better for you to collect. While it seems easy, the reality is that betting to Show almost always leads to ruin. The biggest problem is that most Show bets return just pennies on the dollar. You will be betting $2 to win $0.20. Any smart gambler will tell you that this is a losing proposition.

No. 2—Don’t Throw Away Your Ticket Too Soon

Just because the horses have crossed the finish line doesn’t mean that the race is over. Before the payouts can be made the race has to be made official by the track stewards. They will review tape to make sure no fouls were committed during the race and also verify which horse crossed the finish line first. Following this, the OFFICIAL light will come on and you can cash your ticket. Many frustrated gamblers have thrown away their tickets too soon only to find out that a change was made to the order of finish.

No. 1—Start Betting the Horses Online

Today there are many opportunities to bet horses online. Online racebooks are legal in all 50 U.S. states and provide the same betting opportunities you will find at the live racetrack. The advantages of betting online include not having to leave the comfort of your own home, no travel and admission expenses, and withdrawals direct to your bank account. Many racebooks will give you past performances for free as long as you are betting on the races, so that also saves you money. You also don’t have to deal with inclement weather. All you need is a tablet, phone, or computer and you are all set.

Why not take a moment right now and create an account with online horse betting site? Most will give you a generous bonus just for signing up and making a deposit. Check our Bovada racebook review, Twinspires review or even our Betamerica review. All great choice if you are in the US. 5Dimes review for folks anywhere!

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