How to read the odds.
Ex. Bet $2.00 on a horse at 1/10 to win $2.20
Ex. Bet $2.00 on a horse at 8/5 to win $5.20
Ex. Bet $2.00 on a horse at 20/1 to win $42.00
How to read a Track Surface
SLOW: Footing that is between sloppy and heavy.
SLOPPY: Wet on surface with firm bottom.
GOOD: Footing that is between fast and muddy.
FAST: Footing that is between fast and even.
HEAVY: Slower than, muddy.
MUDDY: Soaked with water.
WET-FAST: Sloppy on top but firm underneath.
FIRM: Dry turf.
GOOD: Firm turf with some moisture.
YIELDING: Very wet that is deep.
SOFT: Plenty of moisture and substantial give.
HEAVY: Deep and often waterlogged.
A synthetic surface is mostly considered fast regardless of weather condition.
Types of Race
Horse racing defines races into certain categories. The more quality of horses running in a specific race will determine the status of the race. Here are the basic races for horse racing.
Maiden: This is a race that is exclusive for horses that have never won a race. A term often used "broken its maiden" is given to a horse when they win.
Claiming: This is a race that is often broken into levels by price. Owners who enter horses in these races understand that their horse can be claimed by another stable.
Allowance: This is a race that is very similar to claiming races except the horses cannot be claimed or sold to another stable. These races normally have set criteria for each horse involved.
Handicap: This is a race that is designed to put equal horses against one another based on their records, weights, etc.
Stakes: This is a race that puts the highest class of horses against one another. Handicap and stakes races offer the largest purses of all the various types of races.