The History and Future of Horse Racing

Horse racing, one of the world’s most popular sports, and definitely the most popular sport which has an animal and human participating. Horse racing has been around for a long time and has always been the sport which people watch and bet on. It is exciting, full of adrenaline and it keeps the fans on their toes, watching every moment like hawks. You blink, and another horse caught up and won the race. In the world of horse racing, everything can happen really quickly. 

But, when has it all begun? What can we expect from horse racing in the future? Here is what you need to know about the history and possible future of horse racing.

Horse Racing in its Early Days

The early days of horse racing can be dated back to ancient civilizations. Ancient Greece and Rome had their own versions of horse racing, chariot races being more popular in Rome. Egypt also has its own races and so did ancient Syria and Babylon, of course. 

While there is no real concrete data about horse racing which date so far back, there are records about horse racing in England, where it is one of the most popular sports. King Charles II was very interested in sports and paved the way to Newmarket Racecourse becoming as popular as it is. He reigned from 1649 to 1685. Some 70 years later, in 1750, the Jockey Club was founded. They oversee horse racing in England, making sure that it is fair and according to the rules which they also established. This marked a milestone in horse racing history. Fast forward to today and what do we have?


Horse Racing Today

Horse racing today has plenty of disciplines, like flat racing, which is the most common type. Steeplechase racing is the next most popular type, meaning a race with obstacles which horses have to jump over. Endurance racing is interesting, where races are at least 40 kilometers long, up to 161 kilometers. Harness racing is also interesting, as well as reminiscent of chariot racing.

Despite all the fun and entertainment, horse racing has its flaws, namely the extreme conditions in which the horses live. Many injured racing horses are put down. Horses can get injured during training, which is even more often than during races. The races may be entertaining, but there are plenty of horses which do not make it there or do not last in the long run, due to the extreme conditions which surround almost all professional sports, but are much more deadly in horse racing. It is worth mentioning, that the governing bodies are working on making it a safer environment for everyone, the horses and jockeys.

Horse Racing in the Future

The most obvious way of improving horse racing is by changing and optimizing the surfaces so that horses and jockeys cannot be injured due to the racecourse conditions being bad. Broadcasting the races is another way which horse racing can be improved. By using virtual reality or other ways of augmenting the viewing experience, horse racing can become a more popular sport. 


Horse racing is a sport which has it roots in the ancient times. Today, it is almost an extreme sport which attracts a lot of attention. In the future, it will most likely be a safer sport but even more entertaining.