Horse Racing Results: A Step-By-Step Guide

Triple Crown season often brings first-time horse racing fans. If you’re new to the sport, here are some tips on how to interpret race results.

If you’ve just stepped into the world of horse racing, you may get confused after seeing the columns and rational exponents after each number.

If so, don’t worry — we’ve got your back! Here’s a complete guide on how to read horse racing results:

How to Interpret the Information About the Race

To get general information about the race from the card, follow these steps:

1. Focus on the header:

The first thing to scan on a racing form is its header. It will give you all the general information about the race. You can find it written in large fonts, on the top, separated from the underlying text by a line.

2. Look for the race number:

On the left side of the header, the race number is mentioned on the form in large fonts. This race number is important as it helps to distinguish between different races taking place at a time. As different tracks are running different races each day — this number will help you find the right race.

3. Search for the track name:

Just like the header and race number, it is also printed in bold on the top of the form. You can find it just on the right of the track number.

4. Review the race conditions:

After the above written bold information, the description of race conditions begins. It covers the type of track road and the length of the race. It provides the list of conditions necessary for the horses to take part in the race. Usually, an alphanumeric code on the right of the track name conveys most of the description information for quick scanning.

How to Read the Columns to Understand the Information About the Horses

This basic information about each horse is usually listed:

  • Horses’ gender
  • Previous record
  • Horses’ age

Just under the track information, there are three columns showing horse racing results. Here are the details of these columns:

1. Left column:

Here, you will get some particular information about the horse type. First, the horse’s race number is written to the left of the body. Underneath lies the standing odds. For instance, if the line odds read 4-1, a bet of $1 will earn you a success of $4.

  • The first row of the text is about the name of the horse
  • The owner’s number is written in the 2nd row
  • The third row is about the color of the silks worn by horse
  • The horse’s jockey is given the final line. Immediately adjacent to this name are the statistics, including first place finishes and win percentage of the jockey

2. Middle Column:

  • Here, the first row tells color, gender, and age
  • The second row tells the horse’s and his owner’s sire
  • The third line is about its mother and maternal grandfather
  • The name of the breeder is in 4th row
  • The last row tells the trainer’s name

3. Right Column:

First, a letter and number are printed in bold on the left, indicating the medications of the horse and the weight it might be carrying. Then, the order of the rows is as follows:

  • The first row is about the horse’s career record including information about its performance this year and the previous year
  • Next, it’s recorded results on wet, synthetic, and dirt-fast tracks. Tomlinson’s rating tells about the performance of the horse on respective tracks. For instance, a rating of 320 indicates the good performance of the horse on a wet track
  • In the third row, you will find the horse’s record concerning the distance and surfaces
How to Review the Horse’s Performance in the Previous Races:

To review past races, consider the following points:

  • Study the list of the horse’s recent performances, given just underneath its general information, telling you about the date of the race and other particular race information
  • First, you will find the date of the race followed by an abbreviation for the track and the race number.
  • Then, review the fractional times which are written in the order like “3:02 1”, where “3” indicates minutes, “02” represents seconds, and “1” a measure of 5ths of a second
  • Lastly, review the horse’s position by finding a number indicating the horse’s Beyer’s speed. The exponent of this number will give you the measure of the lengths between the horse and the race leader
  • On the far side of the page, you will find a number representing the starters of the race there will be a “read comments” section at the end
Final Words:

The art of comprehending horse racing cards can help you make an informed decision when placing bets. If you could analyze the Beyer’s speed and jockey’s statistics correctly, then consider yourself apt in reading race forms. Don’t forget to assess the effectiveness of the horse’s trainer and think about the course.

Professional handicappers also write a brief narrative about the horse in the racing form. This section can help you develop an even better understanding.

We hope this information has made the interpretation of racing form way easier for you. This know-how is sure to step up your betting game!