Why is horse racing so popular in australia

Horse racing is Australia’s most popular sport, with only rugby league and football attracting more spectators. But what is the appeal of horse racing in Australia? Continue reading to discover out.


Horse racing in Australia has a long history.

One of the earliest sports activities to take place in Australia was horse racing. When British ships arrived in Australia to establish a new colony, they brought with them hundreds of horses. It wasn’t long before horse races were held in the nation, and additional horses were brought. However, it took a few more years before horse racing became popular.

In 1810, Sydney hosted the first legally sanctioned horse race in Australia. While racing was already a popular activity at the time, the majority of the races held prior to this event were informal or illegal.

Horse racing was well ingrained in Australia’s athletic culture by the turn of the century, and its popularity has only grown since then.

What is the appeal of horse racing in Australia?

Horse racing is a very popular spectator sport all around the globe, with millions of people tuning in each year to watch the races. However, few people in the world appreciate this sport as much as Australians do.

Horse racing is a very accessible activity in Australia, which is one of the key reasons for its popularity. There are several racetracks found around the nation. According to research, Australia has more than 300 separate racecourses. To put this in context, this is more than any other nation in the globe, and only the United States can boast of more horses competing in races each year.

Another reason for the popularity of horse racing in Australia is that Australians like betting on their favorite horses and riders. This is a thrilling and pleasant sport for people to wager on, and fans have the opportunity to earn significant amounts of money if they support the proper horse.

Here are a few more reasons why horse racing is one of Australia’s most popular sports today:

  • Attending horse racing events is a terrific opportunity to mingle with other people, whether they go with family and friends or meet up with other like-minded horse racing aficionados at the racetrack.
  • Horse racing in Australia has a fascinating history, and understanding about a sport’s past may help you appreciate it even more.
  • Fans like watching and wagering on their favorite horses and riders because it is an exciting and fun sport.
  • Animals are loved by practically everyone in Australia, from the small and cuddly koalas to the large and bouncing kangaroos. According to research, the majority of Australians also like horses, and what better way to experience them than at a race?

Australia’s most prestigious horse races

Each year, Australia hosts a number of spectacular horse races. Here are a few of the greatest and most well-known ones that any horse racing lover will enjoy:

  • The Melbourne Cup is an annual horse race held at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, Australia. It is one of the most well-known and well-attended horse races on the planet. This tournament is dubbed “the race that stops the country” by locals. Not only that, but it is also one of the country’s oldest and most lucrative horse races.
  • Another famous horse racing event hosted in Australia is the Caulfield Cup. Every October, this race takes place at Caulfield Racecourse. The inaugural race was held in 1879, and it has been around for hundreds of years. The competition is limited to just 18 participants, with a prize pool of AUD 5 million.
  • W.S. Cox Plate — If you like horse racing, you’ve probably heard of the W.S. Cox Plate. Every trainer and jockey want to win this famous cup, making it a popular event for horse racing lovers. The event is recognized for its tight corners, which adds to the excitement of the race. Each year, it takes place at Melbourne’s Moonee Valley Racecourse towards the end of October.

Horse racing is an incredible sport, which is why so many Australians like it. This sport is not only entertaining, but it also has a rich history that fans like learning about. If you’ve never gone to a horse race before, consider attending one of the events mentioned above. One thing is certain: you will fall in love with this fantastic sport.

People also ask

Is horse racing popular in Australia?

One country where horse racing is extremely popular is Australia. Billions of Australian dollars are wagered throughout the horse racing season, and it continues to grow in popularity year on year. Horse racing in Australia, like with most other countries, has been around for centuries.

Is horse racing a big industry in Australia?

In 2017–18, horse and greyhound racing contributed approximately $1.4 billion to the Australian Gross Domestic Product. Further value-added income for the economy is generated by breeding, horse sales, prize money and wagering.

Is horse racing losing popularity in Australia?

A major report released by Gambling Research Australia in October found 16.8% of Australians gambled on horse races in the past year, down from 22.4% a decade before. But turnover keeps increasing, from $22.9bn in 2010-11 to $26.9bn in 2018-19 (adjusted for inflation).

What are the positives of horse racing?

Horse racing is worth protecting because it champions and strengthens our most lofty human values – hard work, persistence, and patience – while connecting us to noble and beautiful animals who have partnered with humans for millennia and continue to benefit greatly from that partnership as well.

Why horse racing is good for the economy?

The 2005 study reported $5 million paid in state and local taxes by the racehorse industry. The horse industry in the United States contributes $39 billion in direct economic impact to the U.S. economy and supports 1.4 million jobs on a full-time basis, according to the same AHC study.

What country is horse racing most popular?

Countries Where Horse Racing is Most Popular

  1. The United States of America. Horse racing in the United States traces back to 1665, when the first racetrack was established. …
  2. Hong Kong. Official horse racing in Hong Kong started in 1884 after the Hong Kong Jockey Club was established.
  3. Japan.
  4. The United Kingdom.
  5. Australia.

Is horse racing a dying sport?


The sport of horse racing isn’t dying, but it’s been on life-support. In 2020 the horse racing industry lost over five billion dollars compared to prior years, and its popularity declined. But the dwindling interest doesn’t mean it’s dying; people still bet and watch horses racing in great numbers.

Is horse racing cruelty in Australia?


The ‘world’s largest’ animal rights organization has filed criminal charges against a horse racing body in Tasmania, Australia. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has filed 14 charges against the state’s racing body, Tasracing, and a jockey who competed in two races at Mowbray in Launceston in 2019.

Which direction do horses race in Australia?

Racetracks in Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and Western Australia are designed to be raced on in an anti-clockwise direction, while Queensland and New South Wales racecourses are clockwise.

How much do horse racers make?

Horse racing is a lucrative sport that’s popular all over the world. According to the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, prize money for races worldwide reach almost $3.5 billion a year, while the global betting industry for horse racing generates over $116 billion in revenue each year.

Why is the Melbourne Cup the race that stops the nation?


The Melbourne Cup is the world’s premier handicap distance thoroughbred race. It’s called “the race that stops a nation” because most of the country takes a day off for the race. The Melbourne Cup is always on rhe first Tuesday in November at Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne’s’ West..

What is the relationship between horse racing and Australian culture?

Horse racing has been a part of Australia’s sporting culture since early settlement. But in the 21st century, a day at the races is more of a social affair enjoyed by millennials.

How is horse racing cruel?


Horses used for racing are forced to sprint—often under the threat of whips and even illegal electric-shocking devices—at speeds so fast that they frequently sustain injuries and even hemorrhage from the lungs.

Do horses race naturally?

Running and jumping comes naturally to horses, and we see them doing both those things in the wild. It’s also interesting to note that when a horse unseats its rider during a race, it will continue to run and jump with the other horses.

Do race horses get abused?


Some racehorses are abused. Some racehorses are mistreated and abused; they are drugged, whipped, and even shocked during races. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) went undercover to document some horrible practices carried on by trainers.

How big is the horse industry in Australia?

The Australian horse industry is thought to generate between A$5 billion and $7 billion of economic activity annually2 or approximately 0.5% of gross domestic product.

How much is the Australian horse racing industry worth?

$1.16 billion

Overall, the thoroughbred breeding industry in Australia generates more than $1.16 billion in value added impacts to the national economy.

How many racehorses are in Australia?

Racing industry About 300,000 people have a direct interest as individual owners of, or members of syndicates which own, the 30,000 horses in training in Australia. There are bookmakers, over 3,600 registered trainers and more than 1,000 jockeys, plus farriers and veterinarians involved at race meetings alone.

Which country has fastest horse?

Arabian. The fastest horse breed that can go the distance in record time is the Arabian. They are one of the oldest known horse breeds, known for superior endurance levels than any other horse. They can conserve energy uniquely well, which makes long-distance running easier for them.

What countries love horses the most?

Mongolia has more horses per person than any other nation – 66 per 100 people* – as if almost every adult Mongolian owns a horse. Mongolia is ‘horse lengths’ ahead of the next contenders: Iceland with 24.5 horses per 100 people and Uruguay with 12.

What is Australia’s oldest horse race?

The St. Leger Stakes, which had been run at Homebush from 1841, was continued at the new Randwick course and continues to the present, making it the oldest classic race in Australia (although it skipped a year in 1860).

How many times can a jockey whip a horse in Australia?


The Australian Rules of Racing currently permit riders to use the whip a maximum of five times on non-consecutive strides throughout most of the race, but for the final 100 metres the limit is lifted to “at the riders’ discretion”.

Do race horses know they are racing?


After the race, while the horses might not grasp the excitement of winning the Triple Crown or even just the Derby and Preakness, they do know that people around them are excited — or sad said Nadeau. “They take a lot from how the people around them are reacting because they are sensitive,” she said.

Do race horses lungs bleed?

Exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH), or bleeding from the lungs, occurs world-wide in the performance horse. However, it is observed rarely in other species. EIPH is an important cuase of exercise intolerance. It occurs primarily during spring racing in Quarter Horses, Standardbreds and Thoroughbreds.

Do horses hate racing?

Do horses like horse racing? We cannot and should not assume that horses don’t like racing. After all, in the wild, you will see a horse running, jumping, and prancing. It is also a well-known fact that even if a horse – for some reason becomes riderless during a race – it will continue racing.

Why do jockeys talk funny?

Not all but many jockeys talk funny; this is related to their size. More massive drums produce a more resonant bass sound than a smaller snare drum. Anatomically having a smaller airway space and shorter vocal cords creates a higher-pitched voice.

Why is Melbourne Cup cruel?

According to racing regulations, horses can be whipped a maximum of five times during the majority of the race, but as many times as the jockey likes during the last 100 metres. Whipping is painful and distressing to horses. That is why the jockeys do it. Then there’s the stuff that you don’t see.

Do racehorses go to slaughter?


Thousands of racehorses are being sent to slaughterhouses in Britain and Ireland, a BBC Panorama investigation has found. Some of the slaughtered animals were once owned and trained by some of the biggest names in racing.

Do race horses get slaughtered?


Two-thirds of horses set to slaughter are quarter horses, and many are castoffs from the rodeo or racing industries. The Thoroughbred-racing industry sends an estimated 10,000 horses to slaughter annually, meaning that half of the 20,000 new foals born each year will eventually be killed for their flesh.

Are racecourses clockwise?

The races aren’t all run in the same direction either. Some racecourses are left handed turns (counter clockwise), while other are right handed (clockwise). Some of the courses are also not completely level either; many undulate slightly.

Why do race horses run counter clockwise?

It’s believed to be easier for righties, who make up the majority of world population, to run in a counterclockwise motion. Putting their right foot forward and leaning into a turn feels more comfortable and provides more power and balance than the reverse direction, say physicists.

Why do NSW horses run clockwise?

Horses race counter-clockwise because American racehorse owners didn’t want to conform to Engish standards and its horse racing establishment. Counter-clockwise running is also more natural for racehorses and is how the Greeks and Romans ran their horses at the advent of formal horse racing.

Who is the richest jockey in Australia?

Top Jockeys by prize money

1 James McDonald 570 133-122-6924%$34.3m
2 Hugh Bowman 559 96-75-7618%$16.9m
3 Nash Rawiller 294 59-36-3321%$15.4m
4 John Allen 671 111-90-7217%$13.3m

Who is the richest horse jockey?

Meet Yutaka Take, the world’s richest jockey. A legend in Japan, Take, 52, enjoys ‘God’ status in his homeland and has a film star wife. His face is plastered on posters at racecourses, he’s been the ‘pin-up’ of racing for years and enjoys the same level of fame as pop stars.

What do jockeys earn in Australia?

HOW MUCH MONEY DOES A MELBOURNE CUP JOCKEY MAKE? Jockeys are paid 5 per cent of the total prize money of a horse for each race. In 2020, that meant the winner – Jye McNeil – pocketed $220,000. The second placed jockey makes $55,000 from the prize money, with third place taking home $27,500.

What horses have died in the Melbourne Cup?


The five-year-old’s death three years ago followed these previous deaths in Melbourne Cup day races: — In 2013, French horse Verema was euthanised after snapping a bone in her leg. — In 2014, Japan’s Admire Rakti collapsed and died in his stall after a race and Araldo broke a leg and was euthanised.

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