Archives for February 2018

Top Contenders for the 2018 Grand National

by Rich Nilsen

The Grand National at Aintree Racecourse is a test of endurance, stamina and class like no other race in the world. Dating back to 1839 in England, the prestigious horse race challenges a large field of runners to contest the hurdles and flats over four grueling miles. The winner of the Grand National on April 14, 2018 will be a true champion, and their name will never be forgotten.


According to America’s Best Racing the Grand National is watched by over 500 million people around the globe, and roughly two-thirds of the adult population in the United Kingdom will have some type of wager on the great race. Like with the Kentucky Derby in the United States, you have to have a rooting interest in this thrilling contest.  Bet £10, get £30 when you bet on Grand National.


Currently three horses are garnering the majority of the action in the future books, led by the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Blaklion.  The winner of the Becher Chase stands at 10-1 in the future betting with most of the international bookmakers but is as high as 12-1 with William Hill.  He has won over this course, demonstrating an important affinity for the track, and he enters off an excellent prep race where he finished second.


The co-favorite in the wagering with Blaklion is Total Recall (Ire). He is also listed at 10-1 but is higher in some spots. The nine-year-old son of Westerner has won three in a row since moving into the barn of W. P. Mullins. He is the hot horse in sharp form.


Steeplechase scene black whiteAt the time of this publication the third choice for the Grand National at 14-1 is The Last Samuri (Ire).  Now ten years old, the gelding will take another crack at the big race.  He was the highweight in last year’s event, packing over 160lbs, but he finished a disappointing 16th.  The Last Samuri hasn’t visited the winner’s circle since 2016, however, and this is a tough spot to get back on the winning track.


A dark horse in the wagering could be the French gelding Alpha Des Obeaux (Fr).  He’s not the most consistent runner but he has been racing regularly and on his best day, he merits a chance for a piece of the Grand National.


When it comes to riders for the great race, look at talented jockeys such as Ruby Walsh, who won his Grand National debut at age 20 back in 2000 aboard Papillon.  Walsh won again in 2005 and has placed in other attempts at Aintree.  Other riders to keep a close eye on include Jason Maguire and Timmy Murphy, both of whom compete for the sharp barn of trainer Donald McCain.


Focus your Grand National wagers on horses between the age of nine and 11.  The youth and experience of seven and eight-year-olds often takes its toll in this race, and the oldest runners (age 12 and beyond) have proven to be a poor investment.  The senior runners may hit the board, but they rarely capture the top prize.


Tune in on April 14th for this amazing race as up to 40 runners will attempt to contest up to 16 fences of varying heights and widths.  There is no race like the Grand National, so sit back, place a wager and best of luck!

The Making of Horse Racing Conference Equestricon II

Tampa Paddock

Up close and personal at Tampa Bay Downs paddock. Copyright AGOS

The Making of Equestricon II

Although he actual trade show will take place on the Monday and Tuesday prior to the championships, Equestricon will have a week-long presence and involvement with the Breeders’ Cup, Sharp noted.

“That’s the kind of energy and excitement we’re hoping to build for Breeders’ Cup week, trying to get fans who are traveling to the Breeders’ Cup to come in early and get to experience Louisville and make a whole week’s vacation out of it.”

Source: The Making of Equestricon II

Who will take the Grand National trophy home?

by International Correspondent

This is one of the most frequently asked questions these days. Although lots of us would like to get an answer immediately but we will have to wait for the 14th April, the Grand National Day. Although it is a 3-day event, our primary focus will be on the finals day. For those who may watch this event for the first time, it is a two-lap race. 1st lap has 16 gates, while 2nd has only 14 (riders have to miss out two gates in 2nd lap). Aintree racecourse is one of the most exciting racetracks ever. In fact, it has 6 famous fences. Although not the toughest, the most known fence of the course is ‘Foinavon fence’. This fence got its name after a horse ‘Foinavon’ which avoided mass pile-up on the 23rd fence and took the trophy for itself. If you don’t believe in miracles, you better start. Odds for Foinavon to win were 100/1. He was an outsider. The 1967 race is remembered for this and perhaps the biggest upset in the history of the event.

Another famous fence is fence number 15, ‘The Chair fence’, which is 5ft 3in high. It is the highest fence of the course and is well known because, unfortunately, two jockeys were killed here. Joseph Wynne and George Ede died at this fence in 1862. Another rider Paddy Farrell fractured his spine in a fall at The Chair fence. However his efforts led to the creation of the injured jockeys’ fund.

There is no better way to increase the excitement of this race then betting on it. If you want to improve your chances of winning, you might look into Grand National free bets. You can check the latest Grand National betting offers here like Get your money back if your horse doesn’t run by Betvictor or Coral’s Faller money back offer. There are many more such exciting offers available online here.

Here are some interesting facts about Grand National History. The oldest horse to win this race was Peter Simple at the age of 15, while the youngest was 5 years old (5 of them). 48 winners were 9 years old and that is almost 30% of all time winners. The race was ended before 9th minute only once in history (2015 Many Clouds) of the race. Abd  El-Kader, The Colonel, Reynoldstown and Red Rurn were the only horses to win back to back titles. 5 times in the history, winner was an outsider with an odd of 100/1. The most recent outsider to win was Mon Mome in 2009. Leighton Aspel, Irish Jockey won back to back titles in 2014 and 2015, but with two different horses – Pineau De Re and Many Clouds. George Stevens won most titles (5). He rode 5 Grand National winners: Freetrader (1856), Emblem (1863), Emblematic (1864), The Colonel (1869 and 1870).

Now let’s talk about this year’s prediction. My tip would definitely be Blaklion. He is 9-year-old horse. He has total 24 runs, winning 9 of them and as first runner up in 5 other. His win percentage is incredible 37% percent. So he has lot of experience, which is necessary for a big competition like this one. The stats are also on his side, as mentioned earlier; almost 30% of winners at the Grand National were 9 years old horses. With the current odd of 10/1, it is also bookies first pick. Second pick from me would be The Last Samuri, horse who managed to finish 2nd in 2016 Grand National. After bad 2017 where he finished 16th, this year might be his. Odd of 16/1 seems interesting and definitely worth to try. If you are really optimistic, you may want to try betting on Alpha Des Obeaux, French 9-year-old horse who claimed 5 trophies in his career.

Although it is not clear who will win this year’s Grand National event, one thing is sure. We will have an opportunity to watch great and exciting 10 minutes of horse racing. If you like to read more about this event you can find relevant news on

Horse Racing is a Winner at Gulfstream Park

Horse Racing is a Winner at Gulfstream Park.  Check out the success story below…

Source: Horse Racing is a Winner at Gulfstream Park

Jockey Club Again to Award Scholarships

The Jockey Club announced that it will again be awarding $21,000 in college scholarships for the academic year that begins in the fall of 2018.

Source: Jockey Club Again to Award Scholarships

Understanding Handicaps in Horse Racing

by International Correspondent (UK)

A handicap horse race is defined as a method by which, or a race in which, every horse is made to finish as close as is possible to one another, in an effort to ensure that the races remain as competitive as possible. Horses that run in handicaps do so off of differing weights, with these specifically designed in order to ensure that each animal has an equal chance of winning. Those who study form will understand why handicapping is important, and how it can affect the outcome of a race.


Man studying racing paper trackside before races.

Handicapping in Action

Horse 1 is rated at a handicap of 70, and he is the best racing horse taking part in the contest, with the finest form and the highest level of ability. Horse 2 is rated at 60. He is an average horse, with some ability to perform, but not as good as Horse 1.

We know that Horse 1 is very likely to beat Horse 2 if they run off of the same weight, thanks to Horse 1 being rated as a better animal. Therefore, in a handicap, Horse 1 will need to make a concession to Horse 2 in order to make the event a more competitive one.

In this example, Horse 1 will be required to carry more weight during the race than Horse 1 will. This, theoretically, evens the chances each horse has going in of winning, and makes their respective chances of coming first much closer. Of course, as is the case of any kind of risk, including that posed by the super slots NZ has to offer, this is not always how things work out. This is why betting on these competitions is possible, and as enjoyable as it is.


Who is In Charge of Determining Handicaps? 

This will depend on which country the horse and its owner reside in, with the United Kingdom falling under the jurisdiction of the British Horseracing Authority, or BHA. Their work is to watch each horse and assess the animal’s level of ability. If Horse 1 beats Horse 2 in three races, it is possible for the handicapper to safely deduce that Horse 1 is better than Horse 2, and the latter will then receive a rating lower than the former. Thus, when the animals next meet in a handicap, the gulf in the ability of each will be evened out.


How Do Horses Get Handicap Marks

There are very important rules in place that govern how and when a horse receives its handicap mark. The most important two are:

  1. If a horse manages to win a race, it will receive an official rating
  2. If a horse finishes three times, regardless of what position it may finish in, it will receive an official rating

Interestingly, the handicapper retains the right to refuse to give a horse a handicap mark. If a horse has finished tailed off in its first three starts, for example, it is not possible for the handicapper to form a fair assessment of that animal’s ability. In all cases, however, the handicapper will give a horse a rating that is based on the best form that it has shown up to that date.


The U.S. Triple Crown Explained

 Guest Post

For a very long time, the thought of the Triple Crown was viewed as impossible: during the 59 years spanning from 1919 through to 1978, only 11 horses managed to win the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes, and the Belmont Stakes in the same year. This means an average of around one ever five to six years!

The Triple Crown Reaches Mythical Status

And then, as punters of a certain age who enjoy horse racing as part of the Australian sports betting sites becoming more and more available will remember, the drought descended, after Affirmed last managed the feat in 1978. Ten years. 20 Years. 30 years… Anyone younger than their mid-40s or so will not have any real evidence that anyone has ever managed to take the Triple Crown except for some low-quality videos, most likely taken from before they were born!

Triple Crown trophy

American Pharoah Manages to Break the Spell

And then, in 2015, American Pharoah declared impossible is nothing, and managed the feat in 2015. While horse racing does not still have the same wide range of appeal as it once did, the American imagination was once more captivated when Pharoah completed his historic run at the Belmont Stakes. People tuned in on their TVs, streamed the race online, and even viewed it on the video boards of certain stadiums.

Why We Still Care

 As expensive as it is to get into jump racing or horse racing seriously these days, as an owner or spectator if the truth be told, the Kentucky Derby, which takes place every May still stands as one of the most-viewed sporting events on the American calendar. And, if the Derby winner manages to take first place in the Preakness two weeks later, you will hear his name over and over again, everywhere.

The fact is, while horse racing no longer has the same widespread appeal as it enjoyed in the 1930s, these events make for some rather compelling drama. You may not have any connection to the sport, but the Triple Crown is still a feat to behold. It is also rather enjoyable to make a pick for the winner and then have the answer revealed!


More About the Races Making Up the Triple Crown 

The three jewels in the crown are made up of:

  1. The 1 and 1/4 mile Kentucky Derby, which takes place on the first Saturday in May of every year at the Churchill Downs, in Louisville. A maximum of 20 horses, along with four alternates that are also eligible, are able to enter.
  2. The 1 and 3/16 mile Preakness Stakes, which takes place on the third Saturday of each May at the Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. 14 horses may enter, along with 2 alternates that are eligible as well.
  3. The 1 1/2 miles Belmont Stakes take place on the third Saturday following the Preakness, at Elmont, New York’s Belmont Park. As many as 16 horses may enter.

All three of these races are listed as Grade 1 races, the highest possible level, and are only open to horses aged three-years old.

The Top Horse Races for the Beginning of 2018

by International Correspondent

Here with find the horse races that you need to know about for 2018. Horse racing is a pursuit which takes place all year-round, with millions of dollars at stake across the world. The calendar for horse racing, particularly the Flat season, offers many chances for both legendary horses like Winx and jockeys to lay claim to huge prizes and sporting immortality.

And, for those who take part in this sport thanks to the betting sites in Australia and the rest of the world, there is the chance to take some big money home as well!

pegasus world cup logoThe Preeminent Pegasus World Cup

The Pegasus World Cup took place on January 27th at Gulfstream Park, in Florida, in the USA. this is the world’s richest horse race, with a prize of US$16 million up for grabs. Each of the 12 owners put in US$1 million, and the fund is then topped up by the organiser, the Stronach Group. The 1 ⅛-mile, or 9 furlongs, race takes place on a dirt track, and it is open to horses aged 4-years and up.

The Dazzling Dubai World Cup

The Dubai World Cup takes place on the 31st of March in Meydan, Dubai. This stood as the world’s richest race until its mark was recently passed by the Pegasus World Cup. The winner takes home US$10 million from a total prize pot of $30 million, and it is the biggest social and sporting occasion on the Dubai calendar, ending the UAE racing season. This race is also run on dirt, and takes place over 2 000 meters, around 10 furlongs.

The Convivial Kentucky Derby

The Kentucky Derby is held on the 4th of May at Churchill Downs, and is known as The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sport, the Fastest Two Minutes in Sport, or The Run of the Roses, this last as a nod to the fact that the winner receives a blanket of flowers.

The Kentucky Derby has been run every year since 1875, and is the first leg of the US Triple Crown, along with the Preakness and Belmont Stakes.

The Terrific 2 000 Guineas

The 2 000 Guineas is held on the 5th of May in Newmarket, in the United Kingdom, and stands as the first of the five English Classics during the season for Flat races. This Group 1 race is open to colts and fillies aged three-years, and takes place on a turf track extending for one mile.

Theoretically, the 2 000 Guineas is the first leg of the Triple Crown, alongside the Derby and the St Leger, but the endeavour of winning all three of these races has been attempted less frequently recently. The race was first run in 1809.

The Outstanding Oaks

The Oaks takes place on the 1st of June, in Epsom, in the United Kingdom, and is the third Classic of the season for that country. It is open to three-year old fillies only, and takes place over 1 mile, 4 furlongs, and 6 yards, on the grass track of Epsom Downs. The race began as far back as 1779!

Proposed Finger Lakes Turf Course Gaining Ground

Thoroughbred industry executives in New York are pressing ahead with an effort to build a turf course at Finger Lakes Racetrack, which has seen racing handle slide over the years amid smaller field sizes and competition for gambling dollars upstate.

Source: Proposed Finger Lakes Turf Course Gaining Ground

$1,265,651 Rainbow Six Pool for Thursday 2/22 at Gulfstream Park

Press Release

The 20-cent Rainbow 6 went unsolved for the 17th consecutive program Wednesday at Gulfstream Park, producing a carryover jackpot of $1,265,651.66 for Thursday’s card.

Gun Runner 2018 PegasusMultiple tickets with six winners Wednesday were each worth $382.08.

A total of $319,467 was wagered Wednesday into the Rainbow 6 pool, spurred by a carryover of $1,188,992.55.

The popular multi-race wager was last hit Jan. 28, when the mandatory payout of a North American record $19.779 million pool produced multiple winning tickets worth $15,566.

The carryover jackpot is only paid out when there is a single unique ticket sold with all six winners. On days when there is no unique ticket, 70 percent of that day’s pool goes back to those bettors holding tickets with the most winners, while 30 percent is carried over to the jackpot pool.

Multi-Race Wager Guaranteed Pools Offered Saturday

Guaranteed pools will be offered Saturday at Gulfstream for the 20-cent Rainbow 6 (Race 8-13), the Late Pick 4 (Races 10-13) and the Late Pick 5 (Races 9-13).

If the Rainbow 6 continues to go unsolved through Friday, the popular six-race wager will carry a guaranteed pool of $2 million. The Late Pick 4 will offer a $300,000 guaranteed pool, while the Late Pick 5 will have a $250,000 guaranteed pool.

The $100,000 Hal’s Hope (G3), showcasing the 2018 debut of Irish War Cry in Race 12, will be included in the sequences of all three multi-race wagers.