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Placing a bet on a sporting event where the bettor can make an informed decision as to the outcome of an event
Placing a bet on something the bettor has no control over and reliant on luck
horse remaining in race after a key declaration stage
A bet involving more than one event with the winnings from each selection going onto the next. Accumulators must be placed with the same bookmaker. All selections must win for a return.
All out –
giving everything,not holding back
Allowance weight –
relief of up to 7 pounds awarded to an inexperienced rider
Also ran –
Horse not among winners in a race
Amateur Rider –
Jockey without a license from the Jockey Club, who does not receive a fee for riding in a race
Ante-Post Betting –
on an event well in advance. In the case of big horse races or football tournaments, this could be a year or more before the event takes place.
Ante-post odds –
Quotations offered in advance of the day of a particular race. Bets so placed are lost if your horse is a non-starter.
Jockey in training
At the post –
the point at which horses gather immediately before the start of a race
When a bookmaker takes a lot of money on one particular runner, it is said that it has been heavily backed.
A selection that a punter or tipster feels is a near certainty.
This shows what the lowest odds of horses or competitors not mentioned in the betting forecast are likely to be – ’50-1 bar’ means those not quoted are 50-1 or bigger. Also a place to buy beer.
Best In –
In handicap races, the horse that is considered favourite at the ‘weigh in’.
Best Price Percentage –
Price percentages are used to calculate over-roundness. A completely fair book is classified as 100percent over-round. However the bookmakers’ profit margins mean the figure is almost always above 100percent. But, if one aggregates the best prices from different bookmaking firms on any event, the percentages become lower. On some occasions, when odds greatly differ from firm to firm, the best price percentage may even drop below 100percent showing that the best book on that event is actually in the punter’s favour.
American term for someone who bets.
Term used to describe a favourite who bookmakers expect to be “sunk” or lose and are therefore happy to lay.
A form of headgear which prevents a horse looking either left or right. Sometimes called ‘blinds’.
A means of communication between racecourse and betting shops/offices.
Blue Bet –
A bet which is not genuine but made as bait to catch mug punters.
Board price –
The price offered against each horse on the book-maker’s board, or display area, in betting shops, etc. ‘Taking the board price’ means taking the last price shown against your selection at the time you strike the bet.
Bookie’s Runner –
A person who who works on behalf of a bookmaker on course
The organisation or person who wins in the end.
won on the Won easily, without being pushed out.
The outcome of too many losing bets.
Claiming Race –
race where the winner can be “claimed” from the yard for a set fee.
Classic pretensions –
Holding some hope of success in one of the classic races (Two Thousand Guineas, One Thousand Guineas, Derby, Oaks, St Leger).
This term is used to describe the five major three-year-old races of the flat season: the 1000 Guineas, the 2000 Guineas, the Derby, the Oaks and the St Leger. Of these, fillies can be entered for all five, but colts cannot be entered for the 1000 Guineas or the Oaks.
Clerk of the Course –
Racecourse official responsible for overall management of a racecourse, including going
Collateral form –
When two horses, A and B, have run on separate occasions against a third horse, C, the form of A and B on a line through C is known as collateral form.
Commission agent –
A bookmaker who passes on the bets he collects from his clients to another bookmaker while he himself relies on the commission paid for the business.
Conditional Jockey –
The jumping equivalent of an apprentice.
Corner horse –
A horse, holding its position in the market, whose price is many points shorter than that shown in the betting forecasts (e.g. average suggested price 100 – 8, actual price, firm at 9 – 2).
Course Specialist Horse –
which tends to run well at a particular track.
Covered Up –
Keeping a horse behind other runners to prevent it running too freely in the early stages of a race.
Daily Tote Double –
The third and fifth races on the card comprise this pool. Tickets are 1 pounds each.
Daily Tote Treble –
The second, fourth and sixth races on the card comprise this pool. Tickets are 50p each.
A horse’s mother.
Dark Horse –
Probably a good horse, but its full potential is unknown.
Dead Heat –
This is when two or more selections cannot be separated by the judge even after consulting the photo finish. When settling bets, simply halve the stake.
The disdtance of a race: Five furlongs is the minimum and the four and a half miles of the Grand National is the longest. Also the margin by which a horse is beaten by the horse directly in front. This ranges from a short head to ‘by a distance’ (more than thirty lengths)
A multiple bet. Thus in a win double both horses must finish first for the double to succeed. In an each-way or place double both horses must be placed to draw the place double dividend.
Indicates races at the same meeting.
The starting positions allotted to horses contesting races on the flat (there is no draw for positions over jumps). In this country the lowest numbers are on the left, as seen from behind the stalls.
Dual Forecast –
A Tote bet involving the forecast of the first and second horses in a race, either order
Betting on both a win and a place. A percentage of the win odds is paid for the place which usually ranges from second to fourth depending on the event.
Even break –
Get away on level terms with the others.
The participant with the shortest odds in the field, who the bookmakers think is most likely to win.
Some bookmakers may well group all the outsiders in a competition under the banner headline of ‘field’ and put it head to head with the favourite. This is known as favourite versus the field betting and is common in horse and golf betting.
Fixed odds betting –
Staking a set amount to win a set amount by multiplying the stake by the odds. As opposed to spread betting where the amount you can win or lose on a single bet may vary.
Flat Racing –
the Flat Season begins at the end of March and runs through to the end of September on turf. Races are run over a minimum distance of five furlongs up to a maximum of twenty two furlongs. The official flat racing season now runs for a calendar year to include those flat races run on all-weather surfaces such as at Lingfield, Southwell and Wolverhampton.
Nominating not only the winner but the second as well. A straight forecast = 1st and 2nd in correct order. A dual forecast =1st and 2nd in either order.
Condition of health and training
An eighth of a mile (220 yards)
Get the trip –
Stay the distance.
The state of the ground on which racing will take place. (Hard, Firm, Good, Soft, Dead, Holding, Heavy.)
Good money –
Money from an informed quarter – stable money, for example – not mug money.
Often used for American football, soccer and rugby betting. One team, usually the away side, receives a head start for betting purposes. Punters can bet for or against the team with the head start. The handicap can also be known as the line or the spread.
Professional responsible for alloting the the weights to be carried by each horse in a handicap
Races in which horses are allotted diferent weights with the object of nullifying any disparity in their ability.
Pass on part or all of a wager thereby reducing liability or, ideally, trading at such favourable odds that a win must materialize whatever the result.
Infrequently used in Britain. Covers the whole head including the ears and is of value when a horse dislikes the sound of other animals.
betting Some bookmakers offer odds for an event while in progress with the prices quoted reflecting the current state of play.
The Tote Jackpot comprises the second to sixth races inclusive. All five winners have to be nominated. Tickets are 50p each.
Joint favourites –
When a bookmaker cannot split two runners for favouritism.
Another term for the favourite in a race.
Official responsible for declaring the finishing order of a race and the distances between the runners.
Key races –
Races which, because of their quality or the exceptional time in which they were run, are likely to act as an important guide in future contests.
Knock out –
Coup in which by manipulating the odds at the course a generous starting price is achieved for the favourite, the benefit of which is enjoyed with the S.F. commission away from the course.
A fiver, emanating from the Cockney rhyming slang, ‘Lady Godiva’.
A bookmaker’s offer quoting the price at which he wishes to trade. ‘I’ll lay 6-4 this favourite.’
An alternative term for a bookmaker, someone who lays or accepts a bet.
Left handed track –
Raceourse where horses run anti-clockwise
Much of the money that goes towards prizes and improvements to racecourses comes from amounts collected from bookmakers, based on their turnover. The body responsible for this is known as the Levy Board.
Maiden race –
Ostensibly for those horses, colts, geldings or fillies, which have never won a race. However, conditions sometimes permit previous winners (e.g. maidens at closing, i.e. those which have not won a race up to the time the entries close), in which case penalties are allotted for later wins.
A female horse of five years or older.
Mark you card –
Make selections for each race.
A market is created, according to demand, by the prices offered for each runner by bookmakers at the course.
Bookmakers’ slang for 500 pounds.
A member of the public who places ill-considered bets.
A tipster’s best bet.
No Offers –
When bookmakers are unwilling to offer a price on a participant (N/O).
A handicap race for two-year-olds.
the ratio between the amounts staked on the outcome of a bet, based on the probability either way.
When the amount you win is more than your stake.
Refers to a price where you have to stake more than the amount you expect to make as profit.
Is the animal in question going to run to the best of its ability?
On the nose –
to win (that horses nose to be in front of the rest
Outside stable –
A stable other than the one by which the jockey is retained or employed, or for which he normally rides.
Over round –
Number, expressing the percentage “take” a bookmaker has on a race. i.e. 117 = the number of pounds one would have to stake if one placed a bet on every horse in the race to win 100 pounds. Usually between 115 and 135.
Over the top –
Beyond its best.
when Jockeys riding weight (of jockey plus tack) is above the minimum allowed by the handicapper
Paddock Area –
of the race course incorporating the pre-parade ring (where horses are paraded prior to the race) and winner’s enclosure.
The Tote system operated in certain countries such as France and the USA.
Penalized horses –
Horses that have incurred a penalty as a result of previous successes.
Pigeon catcher –
Similar rules to the Jackpot, but your selections have only to be placed.
Bookmakers’ slang for 25 pounds.
Prevented from winning, or at least from obtaining a better placing, by the jockey.
A member of the public who places bets.
The outsider in the field, normally available at a big price.
The dividing barrier between Members’ and Tattersall’s where the big bookmaking firms are represented.
Ride work –
Exercise horses on their home training-ground/ gallops.
The bookmakers – collectively – in one of the enclosures.
Rule 4 –
If a horse is withdrawn shortly before the start of a race and there is insufficient time to form a new market the remaining horses are subject to a deduction if they win or are placed. These are calculated according to the starting price as follows:
Selling race –
A race the winner of which is afterwards sold at auction.
Bookmakers employee who calculates bets.
Silver ring –
An enclosure cheaper than Tattersall’s and usually sited adjacent to it.
Spread Betting –
An innovative form of betting for high rollers. Started by City traders and based on stock market principles, it allows punters to lose more money than they thought they would.
A horse whose price shortens dramatically, each new quotation being taken up.
Stable’s betting pattern –
The method usually adopted by connections when placing the stable money.
Starting price –
The final price prevailing at the time the race starts.
A runner whose odds are continually shortened in the face of heavy support.
A form of National Hunt racing run over distances of two miles up to four and a half miles, where the horses jump fences of varying height, and consistency
Steward’s Enquiry –
On any suspected infringements of the ‘Rules of Racing’ the Stewards hold an investigation. These are carried out in a similar manner to objections
Sticks Jumps –
(hurdles or fences) as opposed to the Rat.
Suspect form –
Form which may not be as sound as it looks on paper. e.g. a race run in absurdly slow time, or one in which the main contenders were unsuited by the ground.
The enclosure next in status to Members’. Those choosing this enclosure have access to the main betting area (the Ring) and the paddock.
Tax Betting –
is now TAX FREE on all horse racing and sports bets placed in betting shops. There is no tax for bets placed on-course. On the Internet, tax is usually lower than nine per cent while some firms charge no tax at all. Tax can either be paid on stakes or returns.
A means of signalling with the arms (and usually white gloves). Used by bookmakers’ agents to denote price changes, etc.
popular handicapping service
an individual who seeks to predict the outcome of a race
government owned bookmaker
Tote rigging –
Inflated returns are achieved by investing money on unwanted horses on the course – which goes into the Tote pool – while sizeable investments are made away from the course on the desired animals. The ‘away’ money does not normally find its way into the Tote pool.
A multiple bet. Thus in a win treble all three horses must win for the bet to succeed. In an each-way or place treble all three horses must be placed to draw the place treble return.
Not expected to win.
Explanation usually put forward for a losing bet.
Weighed in –
The official declaration ratifying the result.
scale The official scale of weight allowances accorded when a race is for animals of different age groups.
Win only –
Betting markets where no each-way betting is available.
The term used for a bet that consists of four selections, combining them into six doubles, four trebles and one fourfold – eleven bets. At least two selections must win to get a return.