Stop making these 5 horse racing betting mistakes

Betting on horse racing is a very profitable experience. That is, of course, if you know what you’re doing. But even the most veteran horse racing bettors still make mistakes, and some are quite common, especially for beginners.

Luckily, we’ve rounded up some of the most common mistakes beginners make. That being said, you should never make these mistakes because even though they are very simple, they can cost you a lot of money if you are not careful. With all that in mind, here are some of the most common mistakes people make in horse racing betting.

Don’t bet on name value

One trick in horse racing is that owners tend to get creative when naming their horses, because when their names are catchy enough, some people will bet for the sake of it.

Of course, that’s only sometimes the case, but the point remains that it’s often tempting to bet on a horse with a silly or clever name. However, betting on name value alone is a mistake.

Always look for value in terms of odds and payouts, not because of the name. It might sound simple or even silly, but you’d be surprised to know the number of people who bet on horses just because their names are silly or clever.

I find no value

Speaking of value, it’s always wise to check different bookies to see the value of the bets you’re after. Most bets on significant events like the Kentucky Derby or the Breeder’s Cup have the same odds. However, this is only sometimes the case. Some bookmakers tend to overvalue or undervalue a horse because they have different approaches to handicapping horses.

That said, if you’re pretty confident about a particular horse and intend to place a winning bet on it, shopping around different bookmakers will do you very well. Shop around and find the best value for the winning bet on the same horse so you can get the most out of your bet. Not only that, you can even place the same bet at different bookies so your payout will be huge if you win

Bet too much on favorites

Although being the favorite means that the horse has a good chance of winning, this is not always the case. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with betting on the favorite to win, but throwing money at the favorites in every race indiscriminately is not just wrong, it’s stupid.

Let’s do a reality check here. Favorites tend to win only 1/3 of their races, not to mention their odds are usually very high, but with few payouts. This means that if you bet the favorites every time, the best that could happen to your bankroll is to lose 1/8 of your total on each horse race.

If you think always betting on the favorite will get you rich quick, then why are we still talking about mistakes, strategies, etc. here? Everyone would go for the favorite every time.

Poor bankroll management

As a master handicapper in horse racing, your bankroll is your lifeline. If you don’t know what it is, a bankroll is horse racing betting terminology that basically means the money you have exclusively for betting.

Without proper bankroll management, you will cut your horse racing career short if your bankroll allows you to bet on these races. With that in mind, proper bankroll management tips deserve their own article, but the bottom line is that you should always put your bankroll first before making any bets.

They don’t look at the jockeys

Horses can only do so much without their jockeys. In fact, even though the horses themselves do most of the heavy lifting in a race, without their jockeys, they could not win. It would be best to also consider the respective jockeys of the horses you intend to bet on.

A horse can be great on its own, but with a jockey who has experience with both the track and the horse itself, the future performance will be even more excellent. So familiarize yourself with each jockey of your chosen horses. You should also check their strike rates, experience and track record, just as you would the horses.


This is very common, even among veteran bettors. Even though some say it’s good to do once in a while, generally it’s just a dumb move. Chasing can kill your bankroll almost immediately if you let it control you. This is because the more you lose, the more you want to chase until there is nothing left. Yes, a losing streak is always frustrating, but you should remember that there is always a next time.

Final words

Mistakes are prevalent, even among so-called experts. With the experts, at least, they already have a huge bankroll, but one mistake can cost you your bankroll. That said, always bet with your mind and make sure you get the best value out of every bet.

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Any form of gambling it should always be fun, playing in a way that is right for you. It’s good to set limits, take time, or set up reminders.

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