The United Kingdom is a country that is extremely passionate about its sport, and that is highlighted by the sheer number of people that regularly watch and attend live events in the nation.
However, few sports have achieved as much success as horse racing throughout history, with over 60 licensed race tracks across the nation holding just under 50,000 races per year. The sport is thriving in the modern era with the influx of new bettors online, but is betting on the sport as popular as it has ever been?
Most Popular Horse Racing Events
Unlike other countries where horse racing is popular, the United Kingdom enjoys success with both flat and jump meets throughout the season. The latter is the most popular across both the United Kingdom and Ireland, with the National Hunt season getting into full swing before drawing to a close in late April as the flat season begins to take centre stage.
Jumps racing holds the biggest annual horse racing meet of the season in the United Kingdom, with over 266,000 fans passing through the gates at the Cheltenham Festival annually. On the flat, the British Classics make up the most popular events, beginning with the 1,000 and 2,000 Guineas at Newmarket, before the Epsom Derby and St Leger are staged later in the season.
Most Popular Betting Race
When it comes to the most popular race on the calendar for betting, there are few sporting events on the planet that can match the money wagered on the Grand National. The showpiece event at Aintree, which is run annually in April, sees a field of 40 runners tackle over four miles and 30 fences.
The race set a record with online sportsbooks back in 2021, despite the fact that it wasn’t even staged, as £13 million was wagered on the virtual Grand National, making it the most wagered-on event in the history of virtual sports.
That online boom has continued since the Grand National returned following the pandemic, with a record £650 million wagered on the event in 2022. That number is likely to have been exceeded once again during the 2023 edition of the race, which was won in stylish fashion by Corach Rambler.
Even abroad people bet on UK horse races. Like in the US, you can take advantage of horse racing sign up bonus by TwinSpires.com and bet on events like the Grand National.
How Popular Is Horse Racing Betting Today?
Horse racing remains the second-most attended sport in the United Kingdom, with only football seeing more fans pass through the turnstiles to watch the live action. Many questioned whether the sport would die out after the older generation moved on, but that doesn’t appear to be the case, with younger audiences being drawn to horse racing.
Student days at local courses are playing a key role in the long-term future of the industry, while the option to make bets online means that newcomers to the sport aren’t likely to be overwhelmed by having to walk into a betting shop. A staggering 97.4% of the people that watch horse racing in the United Kingdom will bet on the sport, and that is likely to be the case as well roll into the future.
The landscape of the sport is constantly changing with new technologies being implemented, but the attendances at some of the biggest events on the calendar continue to break records. The future certainly looks different in the sport, with many outlets now relying on their apps and other forms of social media to drive up numbers. That could mean that the days of buying the Racing Post, which has been published since 1986, may be coming to an end, but the future of betting on the sport remains brighter than ever.