How to Choose a Winning Race Horse

winning race horse

The worldwide sports betting market will reach $140.26 billion by 2028. The market is growing at a 10.1% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR).

When it comes to picking a winning racehorse, every bettor takes a different approach. There is no procedure for how punters select horses for a particular race.

Novice horse race bettors go through the race card and go with their instinct when selecting a winning racehorse. Maybe they like the horse’s name or the jockey’s outfit color?

But, there are better ways of narrowing down the field and increasing your odds of winning.

Keep reading to learn how to choose a winning horse.

Study the Form

Studying the form of the horses is a useful starting point. It’s natural to want to bet on a horse performing well in the current and previous seasons.

Note that the horses’ form matters but it’s not everything. If a form runner continues to win every race, horse race betting would be a piece of cake.

It’s good to follow a horse in form since confidence levels are high and the horse is fit. But, the conditions of the race will play a huge factor.

For instance, a horse may have a form of 26774, which is not that appealing. But, its last four starts all came at group level, and the horse starts dropping back to a benchmark 90 grade.

Such a horse has the class edge over the field even though it doesn’t have the best performance. Look for such runners since they escape the bookmakers’ eye.

Course and Distance

Still, on the form theme, we recommend another racing betting strategy in the form of course and distance. When you see the “CD” next to a horse’s name, the horse has previously won in the exact course and over that distance.

That can be a determining factor since the horse is likely to win at that course. You will probably hear “horses for courses” in big meetings.

So, it’s good to bet on a horse that has course and distance.

The Jockey

People say “that jockey is hot,” but they don’t mean their looks in horse races. It’s worth following hot jockeys, especially at big carnivals.

A hot jockey will often get confident, making them a better jockey. Consider backing experienced and in-form riders.

Such trends and hot jockeys don’t continue forever, so always identify when a jockey loses their touch. Get expert advice and tips on the current hot jockeys at Derby picks this year.

They will guide you in your horse race betting procedure.


When you place a bet on a racehorse, it’s crucial to factor in barriers. In many cases, when the barrier is wide, the odds of winning are low.

Though that is not always true, sticking with horses with good barriers is advisable. It does not matter so much over staying distances since horses from out wide can find cover.

But if a horse should clear barrier 14 in a sprint contest, they are already behind the eight-ball. Look out for horses drawn barrier one.

If such a horse loves getting back in the race and making late runs, drawing the inside barrier will be negative. But if the horse love to lead, drawing the inside barrier is ideal.

Breeding and Pedigree

Breeding is a huge part of these types of bets. The breeding can tell how a horse will perform in a race. The top sires in the horse race industry often produce horse race winners.

If the sire and dam were speedy sprinters, the offspring would inherit some of their traits. Also, if the parents were 3 miles jump chasers, the offspring inherits their stamina.


Weights are crucial when picking handicap races. The racehorses carry different weights according to their initial rating.

The best horse in a previous race is the top weight, while the worse horse is the bottom weight. But, handicapping horses isn’t always an exact science.

It can pay to choose a runner carrying less weight around, more so over long distances. A horse regarded as favorably handicapped is often among the favorite on many betting sites.


If you’re at the racecourse, go check out the paddock horses. Apart from that being part of the thrill of the day, you will also notice how the horse looks physically.

Is the horse looking fit and healthy? Or is the horse seating and nervous-looking? You will observe the racehorse’s well-being properly at this time.

By looking at the horse in the flesh, you will know its current condition and frame of mind.

Look for Patterns Indicating Improved Efforts

Horses that outrun their odds will present what handicappers know as positive wagering value. Such horses are not well known from stakes races or liked by bettors but still manage to do better.

A quick scan of previous performances will often show two classes of horses:

• Those that do well when they are favorites
• Those that surprise bettors now and again

You can check the race conditions of when the horses surprised bettors and compare them to the current race conditions. If there are some similarities, you have found a positive wagering value.

Choose a Winning Race Horse

There are various variables to consider when placing a bet on a racehorse, as outlined above.

Do not leave your bets totally to Lady Luck. Remember to enjoy it, have fun and always trust your horse picks.

Check out our other blog posts if you’ve enjoyed reading this post.


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