Horse Racing Betting Mistakes to Avoid

Since the US Supreme Court overturned the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) in 2018, effectively turning over responsibility for sports betting to individual states, millions of Americans have been able to place their own bets and sign up for sportsbook customer accounts.

There is now a wide range of sportsbooks to choose from, as well as a lot of horse racing betting apps, that make the process even easier. But as sports betting is new to a lot of people, there are some mistakes that these novices keep making.

Betting online or remotely is very simple, so just about everyone who is legally able can do it. But before you get too carried away with your new sports betting freedom, we thought it would be wise of us to highlight a few mistakes that newcomers make when it comes to betting on horse racing.

Don't blindly follow the crowds when it comes to betting on horses

Just Backing the Favorite

Obviously, there is a reason why a particular horse is chosen as the favorite. But it doesn’t mean that it is guaranteed that that horse is going to win. In fact, in big events, the favorites can sometimes be backed too heavily, making them overvalued and decreasing the odds.

Lower odds mean lower potential returns, so that’s no good for anyone. You may even find that to be the case even if there aren’t any signs of overvaluing. Anything can happen in a horse race and you should look carefully at the other runners and riders for better value.

Ignoring the Form

As with many of the tips we are sharing here, this next one follows on from the previous piece of advice. The form guide offers bettors valuable information about all the horses’ past performances. But it will also tell you about conditions and race lengths to give you a full picture of the horses going into a race.

By not taking notice of the form guide, you are effectively going into betting blind. Why wouldn’t you want as much information as you can get before spending money on a bet? The form might just confirm what you are already planning to do – but there is always the possibility that it will completely change your mind.

Ignoring Conditions

One of the pieces of information that the form guide will give you is how the horses in your race have fared in different conditions recently. This is extremely important, as different horses will find different conditions easier or more difficult. Not all races are run in the same conditions, so reading up on that piece of form is crucial.

The conditions for a race can relate to the track, but it can also mean the weather as well. So make sure that you are also consulting forecasts when it comes to preparing your bet. You may not know all the information about how a horse performs in different conditions but you can use that information alongside what it says in the form guide.

Thinking All Sportsbooks and Apps Are the Same

We mentioned before the sheer number of online sportsbooks at your disposal these days. A newcomer may take a look at what is on offer and believe that they are all effectively the same. Although the odds and offers may be similar, it is the details that make all the difference here.

Many of the odds in horse racing betting markets will be the same but it pays to find the better value odds – and there are some sites that will stand out here. It is also very important to make sure that the betting app you are using is fast and responsive. There is no point comparing the odds to get the best deal and then having to use a poorly performing app.

Not Betting to a Budget

The mistakes we have profiled so far have all related to the actual betting process. But not sorting out your betting budget in the first place could have you in all kinds of trouble. Sports betting is not a quick fix, so you need to understand that any profits are likely to be realized in the long term rather than the short term.

As you need to think further ahead than just the next horse race, you should also budget accordingly. If you don’t think carefully about how much you are preparing to bet – and potentially lose – you will not have enough left to make future bets anyway.

Not Understanding the Race

With any kind of sports betting, you should always have done your research and understand completely the event you are making a prediction for. This may sound like an obvious point to make but you might be surprised by the number of ill-informed bets that are made every single day.

When it comes to horse racing, there are plenty of terms and jargon to take in before you place that first bet. Handicap betting is an obvious example with horse racing, where you should understand what the race entails and how your betting should be altered from other types of races.

Following the Crowd

At the end of the day, when you are placing a bet on a horse race you are spending your own money. With any kind of expense, you should be thinking carefully about the transaction and not be getting carried away by friends or family. Getting caught up in the buzz of it all can result in failure.

At this point, we should say that listening to tips should absolutely be part of your horse racing betting process. But make sure that the tipsters know what they are talking about. If you end up following the crowd you will soon find out that the majority of bettors lose. You should be doing everything you can to make sure you are not one of them.

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