Horse racing is one of the longest standing sports competitions, with a very rich history going back to ancient Greece, Egypt, Syria and Babylon. Humans realized early on that the horse was an essential advantage in all aspects of life; it could be used for farming, but for fighting as well, giving its rider tremendous advantage over on-foot soldiers. We’ve also learned to appreciate this majestic animal’s force and capacities, and this fitted perfectly with our love for sports and competitions. Thus, we know that in ancient Greece, the Olympics featured mounted horse racing, but chariot racing as well. The Romans borrowed this tradition too, and more recently, it became a favorite sport for British royalty. For them, it was the sport of Kings, possibly also because not everyone afforded a horse, let alone a purebred one.
There are various types of racing, depending on the country and its culture, but we can safely say there are three major types: harness racing, flat racing and steeplechasing.
• Flat racing – In this type of competition, the horses and riders (or jockeys) run over a predetermined distance, and the main goal is to see which the fastest horse is. The animals’ stamina is analyzed, as are the jockey’s skills in conducting the animal.
• Steepleracing – The main difference between this type of competition and flat racing is that here, the horse has to jump over hurdles on a predetermined distance. The jockey’s skills are even more under scrutiny here, because he or she is supposed to control the animal and make it trust them enough to jump over the hurdles at maximum speed.
• Harness racing – With this type of horse racing, the horse is connected to a sort of chariot, much inspired by the ancient Roman ones. They are called sulkies, or two-wheeled carts, and the jockey is placed in them. The jockey needs other skills here, and he/she must control both the animal and the sulky’s movements.
One of the reasons why horse racing maintained its popularity over the centuries, and even enjoyed an increase in popularity, is because people love to bet on horses. In fact, there is a huge industry related to these competitions, especially in Great Britain, and a winning horse can be valued at tens of millions of dollars. So if you think you know a bit about horses and you want to do some horse racing betting – Click here! and you might be luckier than you thought. Otherwise, you can admire it just for competition’s sake, for the love of sportsmanship, and the incredible force and speed these gentle yet powerful animals have.
Horse racing has always been part of powerful cultures around the world, and the phenomenon is still going strong. In that respect, it is safe to say it will still be part of our interests in the faraway future and we will still enjoy it.
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