5 Best Horse Breeds That Are Known for Their Speed

5 Best Horse Breeds That Are Known for Their Speed

5 Best Horse Breeds That Are Known for Their Speed

There are a fair number of horse breeds that are bred specifically for their speed and stamina. Though it has become a common misconception that Thoroughbreds are the only dominating breed when it comes to the highest speed in horse racing, there are many breeds of horses now that can topple them in a Flat race without losing sweat.

Though fast speed is not the only metric to measure the quality of a well-bred horse, it certainly is the most desired for most common types of horse racing. So, without further ado, let’s dive deep into the best horse breeds that are dominating the speed charts.

Quarter Horse

The name is derived from the fact that they exhibit the fastest speed when it comes to racing through 1/4, i.e., quarter-mile streets. That’s why they were used to be called Quarter Pather horses, which was later shortened to form the current name. Though most people talk about Thoroughbreds in terms of popularity, these Quarter breeds can absolutely smash them in a short or quarter-mile flat race, topping a maximum speed of 55 mph (88.5 km/h).

Since horse racing is very popular among bettors and wagerers like any other unpredictable sport, there are an increasing number of sports betting platforms like best crypto sports betting sites to satisfy the increasing demands. The odds of winning a Flat race with this USA-born Quarter breed are on par with those of Arabians and Thoroughbreds. They have a very calm nature and are highly intelligent when it comes to racing and controlling their feet. Be it Endurance, Barrel, or a Flat race, they are suitable for all formats of horse racing, making them an all-round horse.


Arabian Horse

As the name suggests, they are native to the land of the Arabian peninsula. Since they are bred by nomadic people for thousands of years in the hot deserts of Arabia, they are also sometimes called the Bedouin horse. As they are bred mostly for their long stamina and energy in the heated desert, they have the ability to survive with just a little water, making them the ultimate horse for the Endurance race. However, despite having max stamina and energy, they can also top an average speed of 34 mph (55 km/h), often reaching as high as 40 mph (65 km/h).

As they are mostly hot-blooded, they evolved to grow thin skin that stops their inner bodies from overheating, keeping them cool even under the heat of the desert. Decades of running great distances in search of clean water helped them build massive stamina as well as unparalleled speed. Therefore, they are perfect not just for Endurance but as well for Flat and Barrel races. Their height can reach as tall as 16 hh (64 inches), which allows them to have long strides in racing. Though they are mostly hot-headed in nature, they can be deemed as good family horses as well due to their kind nature.

Thoroughbred Horse

It is one of those few breeds of horses that are bred solely for fast racing. Therefore, it is no wonder that their speed can top as fast as 43.97 mph (70.76 km/h), as clocked by Winning Brew in 2008. They are the ultimate choice when it comes to Flat and Steeplechase racing. Around the 17th century, three different breeds were imported to England in hopes of creating a new breed that can radiate fast-speed energy. Byerley Turk, Darley Arabian, and Godolphin Arabian were the three chosen ones that contributed to the racing gene that we see today in Thoroughbreds.

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Appaloosa Horse

This is one of those rare breeds of horses that has the blood of the three best breeds combined together – Quarter, Arabian and Thoroughbred. Therefore, one does not have to look very far to see why on average, they topple the speed chart at 43 mph (69 km/h). Be it Flat racing, Endurance, or doing the Barrels, this unique breed has the stamina, energy, and speed to execute all types of racing. It was Nez Perce Indians who selectively bred Appaloosa to build up their speed and stamina as well as the cool temperament that is required on the track.

Originally from the USA, they stand tall between 14hh (56 inches) and 16hh (64 inches), giving them the long strides that are required for their versatility. Their friendly nature also comes to aid in controlling them during a tough, fast-paced race. One feature that is very unique to them is their famous spotted hide and mottled skin in their muzzles and eyes. Though they can also come in solid colours, spot patches are what they are mostly known for.

Standardbred Horse

It was specifically bred for harness racing during the 19th century to be the best trotting horse there ever was. Their origins can be traced back to Hambletonian 10, who was the great-grandson of the Messenger. These Hambletonian 10s were foaled around 1849 in North America to breed today’s Standardbred to be the ultimate harness racing horse. This breeding is also recognized by the most prestigious North American harness race, the Hambletonian Stakes.

Standardbred can pace and trot or both since it was a gaited breed. Though it can perform the canter, it is penalized if done in a harness race. For more comfortable riding, the pace is preferred from Standardbred since it is a lateral gait for which the hind and fore feet move in unison. However, it is trotting that is most famous as it is the preferred gait for racing this particular breed of horse.

They have by far the most gentle temperament out of all other breeds, and hence, they are very easy to train. In fact, they are often called honest horses as they are the most willing when new owners or trainers come to take hold of them. Therefore, with a good balance of speed and stamina, they are suitable for Harness and Saddle trot both.

In Conclusion

Though speed is not the only metric to measure the ability of a good horse, it certainly is the most desired quality when it comes to most famous formats of racing such as Flat races, Endurance, Barrels, etc. This practice of breeding one type of horse with another of different quality, we have produced a large number of breeds of horses, each with unique characteristics. In a sport like horse racing, a combination of good speed and stamina determines the outcome of the race. So, if you are new to this, keeping track of which breed of horse you are riding is a good way to start if you are serious about winning the race.

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