Horse Racing is one of the most entertaining and exciting sports to bet on but getting to know the jargon can be a minefield for newcomers. From bridge jumpers to thoroughbreds, you need to know the terms so you can place your bets with confidence. Now’s the time to brush up on your betting lingo and racing information ready for the races. 

Abandoned 

An abandoned race is one that’s been cancelled or postponed to a later date due to weather conditions. Stakes that have been placed on these races are usually refunded by the bookmaker. 

Accumulator 

This is a single bet that combines at least four different selections – each selection needs to be correct for the bet to pay out

Across the Board 

Across the board refers to a punter placing three bets – one on the horse winning, one that it’ll finish second and one that it’ll finish third. If the horse wins, you collect all three pay-outs, if it comes second you win two bets, and if it comes third you get paid for the last bet. 

Ante-Post

This is a bet that’s been made well in advance of the race day – these can sometimes mean slightly better odds for the punter, due to the horse not being guaranteed to run at this point. 

Bridge Jumper 

This is the term used for someone who bets a large amount of money on one horse to win the race. 

Closer

A closer is a horse that tends to perform better in the later stages of the race. 

Dead Heat 

Dead heat is when two horses tie. Sometimes, even a photo finish cannot determine a clear winner. 

Exacta 

This is where you choose two horses and bet which will finish first and which second. 

Handicap / Handicap Race 

When horses carry a certain amount of added weight, the term handicap is used. It gives extremely fast and extremely slow horses an equal chance of winning. 

In the Money 

This term refers to finishing in the top three places in any one race. 

Maiden Race 

This race is for horses that have never won a race. 

Nap

A nap is considered to be the finest bet of the day from a tipster. 

Odds

This term is used to describe the likelihood of a certain outcome to happen at the end of the race. These are calculated by taking into consideration how many bets have been placed on certain horses to win – so as the number of bets for a horse increases, the odds go down. 

On the Nose 

This is to bet on the horse to win, and any other result will mean you don’t get paid. 

Quinella 

This term is like ‘exacta’, however, the two horses can finish in any order for you to win. 

Stayer

A stayer refers to a horse that typically does well on flat races over long distances (two miles and above). 

Thoroughbred 

A thoroughbred horse is one that can be traced back to one of the three founding stallions – the Darley Arabian, the Godolphin Arabian or the Byerley Turk. 

Underlay 

An underlay is a horse that appears to have been under-priced.