Myths About Horse Racing

Francis Bacon, the Irish-born British painter, believed that after the annexation of a country all its artists should be banned since these are the only people who can critique the establishment through art and stories. Myths, tales, and narratives have always been vital markers of our reality, and we’ve woven legend into everyday life in order to propagate many policies and ideas.

Horse racing is a multi-billion dollar industry, a cultural symbol, and a mark of distinction in terms of class and money for many countries. For a sport this integral to our society, and one which aims to attract punters with deep pockets, a little flair needs to be added, and several stories have sprung up around it. Much like the myths that have become attached to the various online casino games in NZ and around the world, however, some can do more harm than good, and very few have any basis in reality.

If It’s a Rainy Day, Bet on Grey

There is absolutely no evidence to say that there is any link between the colour of a horse and its ability to handle a wet track. In fact, there may well be indications that grey horses loathe damp conditions and the mud that comes with them, which can make them irritable!

Jockeys Need to Be Short

Although most jockeys are 5’ on average, there is no official limit on their height. Since they are carried by the horse, their weight is subject to whatever official restrictions are in place. For example, Ronald Ardoin was 5’9’’ and went on to become one of the greatest jockeys in history.

Favourites Are Always a Good Bet

Not so fast. The Favourite of a Horse Race is simply the animal who has received the most wagers, the one punters think is most likely to win, and this status has no bearing on reality. In fact, during the early 1900s, many Mafia rings made this belief popular in an underhand way to fix races and get people to wager the way they wanted them to.

Thoroughbreds are Bad-Tempered

Thoroughbreds are of a pure, traceable line, and this signifies their value and reliability on the track when under the command of a master. While their genealogy certifies their worth, many people also believe it attests to an inconsistent, unpredictable temper.

This is simply not true! Many thoroughbreds are very calm, so calm, in fact, that they can even handle the flashes of paparazzi cameras every now and then. Many times winning horses need to let people touch and pet them, and you’ll find that the majority are able to handle social interactions with ease, and can even be quite reciprocative when it comes to affection.

Any Horse Can Be a Racehorse

Thoroughbred Horse Racing is, as the name implies, open to Thoroughbreds only, part of a group of horses that can trace their ancestorship to one of the three stallions that started the breed. It’s the animal’s ancestry that renders them eligible for competing on the track, with this group being the only ones that can run 1.25 miles in around two minutes while carrying a minimum of 120 pounds of jockey muscle.


About Doreen Cohen