What to look for in a winning horse
Equestrian performance sports date back to ancient times, from horse racing in the 12th century up until the debut of horse riding in the Summer Olympics in 1900. As history will show, mankind have had a need for horses for centuries, they were once used as a reliable method of transport and are now often found in domestic farms.
In modern day, different breeds of horse are relied upon for various disciplines such as Dressage, Eventing and Jump racing. An Irish Sport, Dutch Warmblood, Thoroughbred and Irish Draught are four breeds that are utilised across a variety of industries because of their anatomy, physical characteristics and competitive abilities.
Horse racing specialists, myracing.com have conducted research that explores the anatomy of four different horse breeds to highlight what to look for in a winner when attending the races.
James Prosser, Co-founder of My Racing said: “With an ever expanding user base, we wanted to create an educational resource about horses that will provide every one of our customers with the information they require to make an informed betting decision.”
But when it comes down to betting, would you be able to tell different breeds part? More importantly, would you know what to look for in a winner?
Equestrian sports such as Dressage, often require a Dutch Warmblood for success. The breed has long forearms, powerful hindquarters, and they are always in harmony with their rider. Their reliable and calm nature makes them the ideal breed for the sport.
Summer 2016 silver medalist, Spencer Wilton, competes in Dressage and has experience working with Dutch Warmbloods. When interviewed by myracing.com, Wilton said that their most important personality trait is sensitivity, and that he looks for the straightness in their limbs and the way that transfers to movement. When building a confident relationship, Wilton said that it depends on the horse. Sometimes it can be instant and other times it can take months.
For Eventing, which includes Flat racing, an Irish Sport horse is often used. They have a great amount of endurance, and a muscular croup that is often sloping to improve their jumping ability. The breed are bred for their trainability and willingness to work. An Irish Sport is a cross between a Thoroughbred and an Irish Draught. The breed encompasses the characteristics of both horses, such as the Irish Draught’s jumping abilities, which makes them a strong species for the sport.
Jump racing, also known as National Hunt racing is often seen on race courses such as Royal Ascot. It involves a horse jumping over hurdles while taking part in a race. For this particular style of racing a Thoroughbred is often used. Speaking to myracing.com, eight-time champion jockey Peter Scudamore MBE, who has ridden 1,678 winning horses in his career said that he looks for bravery, athleticism and a strong jumping ability in the horses that he competes with.
In terms of physiological attributes, the most important feature that Scudamore looks for is a large and powerful heart to ensure the horse has a natural advantage over its competitors. An Irish Draught is often used for traditional purposes such as farm work, and are known for their willing nature and taking care of their owner.
When you next attend a racing event, whether it is ladies day or at the next Olympic Games, keep your eyes peeled for each breed as they might contribute towards you receiving a big win.