The Four S’s of Horse Racing

You may have heard of the five S’s of horse racing. These include SCRATCH, SESAMOID, COOLING OUT, and BREAKAGE. But what exactly are these? They are all related to the horse’s racing strategy, but they are different. Despite similarities in their name, they are very different. The S’s refer to the different steps a horse must take to win a race. Read on to learn more about these four important S’s of horse racing.


SCRATCH is a common term used to describe a horse race. This condition happens when more horses have entered a race than are allowed to start. A horse that is scratched from a race is not eligible to run again unless there are enough scratches to reduce the field to fewer horses. Horses on the SCRATCH list will forfeit any previous preference. If the scratching is done on the first race of the day, the field will be the same as the one that has entered the race.


While mild sesamoiditis may not affect a horse’s athleticism, a more serious condition will most likely decrease its athleticism. In 2003, two studies came to opposing conclusions on the relationship between sesamoiditis and racing ability. According to one study, horses with an enlarged divergent vascular canal will likely have reduced racing ability at two and three years old. In the interim, it is best to consider continuous care for horses at risk for this condition.


During a horse race, COOLING OUT should be performed before and after the race to prevent injuries. Proper cooling is a must, both for the horse and the jockey. The goal of a cool down is to return the horse’s body temperature to a normal level. While some horses will pant after a race, the panting should stop after 20 minutes. By enhancing the horse’s natural cooling mechanisms, it can ensure an efficient return to a resting state.


There are a lot of arguments for and against eliminating BREAKAGE in horse races. While account wagering is a relatively recent development, horse racing has used breakage for centuries. A simple explanation of what breakage is: It’s the difference between winning bets and payouts. This difference in payouts and winnings has been an issue in horse racing for years. Fortunately, some horse racing enthusiasts and stakeholders are now beginning to recognize its importance and are considering reform.


A key to WINNING a horse race is knowing which horses are vulnerable and which aren’t. A vulnerable favorite will waste your money, but a favored horse that’s already a big favorite is going to put on a great effort to win the race. You can avoid this pitfall by focusing on the horses who have real chances of winning. Here are some tips to help you make the right bets:


Several factors are considered when handicapping a horse race. The importance of each factor is determined by determining its relative importance. These factors are detailed in the table below. These factors are not specific to any particular race, track, or surface. You should focus on the true contenders. In addition, you should not discount longshots with legitimate reasons for being longshots, such as a previous race at an unsuitable distance or surface.