Understanding Australian Horse Racing (Part 1/3)

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Mel Daniels

January 13th, 2015

This is the first of a three part series on Australian horse racing. Today I will list terms you will hear at an Australian track that you wouldn't hear for the most part at an American track.

Click here to view part 2 in this series.

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A horse confirmed by the owner or trainer to be a runner in a race.
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A horse seven years old or older.
All Up:
A type of bet where the winnings of one race is carried over to the next race and so forth.
Apprentice allowance:
Reduction in the weight to be carried by a horse which is to be ridden by an apprentice jockey. Also called a "claim". It varies from 4 kg to 1.5 kg depending on the number of winners the apprentice has ridden. Recent rule changes have resulted in an increase in the maximum amount able to be claimed—from 3 kg to 4 kg.
The T.A.B prices horses are showing before a race begins.
Name given to a punter {someone that bets on horses} who arrives on course with a stack of papers,hence: more tips than a can of asparagus
To bet on a horse.
Backed In:
A horse whose odds have shortened.
Backed off the map:
A horse which has been heavily supported resulting in a substantial decrease in odds.
Back up:
To race a horse soon after its latest engagement. Also, bettors who keep backing a particular horse are said to "back up."
Bank teller job:
A horse considered such a near certainty that a bank teller could invest 'borrowed' bank funds and replace them without detection.
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Often called as second place horse in a race where the winner has won by a wide margin.
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Dead cert:
Dead certainty, a horse or team that is considered highly likely to win. Dead ‘un: A horse deliberately ridden to lose.
Dead ‘un
A horse deliberately ridden to lose.
The percentage reduction in odds, for win and place bets, when a horse is scratched from a race after betting on that race has commenced
Dogs are barking it
A big tip which has become common knowledge.
To be defeated convincingly.
Double carpet:
33/1 outsider.
When the odds of a horse increase or ease.
Drift in:
A horse moving from a straight path towards the rail during a race.
Good information, a tip. Drum can also mean to be placed 2nd or 3rd in a race; to run “the drum.”
Dutch book:
To bet on a number of horses, at varying odds, such that whichever bet wins, a set profit is guaranteed.
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A racehorse that has performed badly.
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As in ‘What a Ham’. Term used for a horse that has been in a good paddock/looks a little large around the edges.
The racing official who assigns the weights to be carried by horses in handicap races.
To veer away from a straight course during a race.
Hard earned:
Hot Pot:
The race favorite.
The weight a horse is allocated or carries.
An illegal battery powered device used by a jockey to stimulate a horse during a race or track work.
Jumped out of the ground:
Said of a horse which comes from nowhere at the end of the race.
Jumped out of trees:
Said by bookmakers of a rush of punters to plunge on a horse.
Odds against:
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Odds which are longer than evens (e.g. 2-1). At present Australian odds are expressed as a $ figure: 2-1 is now shown as $3 (2-1 plus the $1 stake).
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Odds on:
odds which are shorter than evens (e.g. 1-2 or 2-1 on). Or $1.50, using the above example in Odds Against.
Odds on look on:
odds which are shorter than evens (e.g. 1-2 or 2-1 on). Or $1.50, using the above example in Odds Against.
Odds on look on:
An old adage used by bettors in which the decision is made not to bet on a race in which the favorite is at odds on.
Off side:
The right hand side of a horse.
On the bit:
When a horse is eager to run.
On the nose:
A bet placed on the win only
Ordinary cattle:
A derogatory term for a low class field of runners.
The money an investor bets or wagers is called their outlay.
A horse whose chances of winning a race are not considered very strong. An outsider is usually quoted at the highest odds.
Odds about a horse which are considered to be good value because they are longer than its estimated probability of winning.
Salute the judge:
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The horse wins the race.
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Scraping paint:
Racing tight, or close, to the running rail.
Intermediate times recorded during a race.
Set the board:
When a bookmaker completes the information shown on the betting board, by listing each runner in a race and their respective odds, he or she is said to have set the board.
Colloquial term for a jockey’s whip.
When the odds of a horse decrease, usually because a lot of money has been wagered on that horse.
Said of a jockey who has ridden a horse so badly as to be the main cause of it losing a race.
A well supported horse with no apparent form to justify its price.
Speedy squib:
A horse which has a reputation for beginning races extremely fast and running out of steam before the winning post.
The resting period for a horse between preparations or racing.
A term used for one hundred dollars.