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UK Horse Racing Betting Trends: Online Growth and Stats

UK Horse Racing Betting Trends SimulationUK Horse Racing Betting Trends Simulation

Horse racing is known as the second biggest spectator sport amongst Great Britain’s locals. The rise of sportsbook availability, live streams to watch horse races in real-time, and other modern statistics have lent to the spectator sport’s continued success throughout the United Kingdom. 

You can engage in online sports betting for horse races in many different ways. Let's delve deeper into the 2024 statistics and trends for online horse racing betting in the UK and discover some of the best ways to profit:

National Hunt Racing at Perth RacecourseNational Hunt Racing at Perth Racecourse

Millions on the Mane: UK Horse Racing Betting Trends Set to Break Records in 2024


  • Age: While data is limited, some reports suggest a trend towards younger demographics (18-35 year olds) engaging in online horse racing betting. This could be due to factors like increased mobile accessibility and online betting platforms offering a more interactive experience.
  • Location: Online betting allows participation from anywhere with an internet connection. However, traditionally strong horse racing regions like Yorkshire and the South East might still see higher concentrations of online bettors.

Popular Betting Types:

  • Win/Place/Show: These remain popular, but there's a rise in exotic bets offering higher potential payouts. Examples include:
  • Each-Way Bets: Combining a win and place bet, offering a return if the horse wins or finishes in a specific position (e.g., each-way double bets the horse to win and place).
  • Forecast/Tricast: Predicting the horses that will finish first and second (forecast) or first, second, and third (tricast) in the correct order.
  • Accumulator/Yankee: Combining multiple bets on different races, where all selections need to win for a payout, but offering potentially large rewards.

Impact of Mobile Betting:

  • A report by the UK Gambling Commission (credible source) suggests mobile betting now accounts for over 70% of all online gambling activity. UK horse racing betting trends are likely even more pronounced due to the convenience of placing bets on the go, especially during live races.
  • Mobile apps from betting platforms offer features like live streaming, in-play betting, and personalized notifications, further boosting mobile engagement.

Winnings vs. Losses (Data Availability):

  • Unfortunately, obtaining specific data on winnings vs. losses for online horse racing bets is challenging. Betting platforms typically don't release such information publicly.
  • However, the Gambling Commission does report for 2023 on overall Gross Gambling Yield (GGY) for the industry, which reflects the amount wagered minus winnings paid out. Analyzing trends in GGY can provide some insights.

Sources for Statistics:

  • The UK Gambling Commission publishes reports and data on the gambling industry, including online betting.
  • Trade publications and news outlets specializing in the horse racing industry often report on betting trends and statistics.

A Brief History of Horse Race Betting in the United Kingdom

Under the rule of King James I in Great Britain, horse race betting grew prevalent in the earlier portion of the 1600s where bettors made wagers on the order in which the horses would finish the races.

Later in the 18th century and 19th century, horse racing transformed into more of an organized sport.

Fast forward to the present day, well-known horse races in the United Kingdom like the Epsom Derby on the first Saturday in June annually and the Grand National races in Liverpool in either the latter part of March or early April, bringing horse racing betting enthusiasts to the racing stadium and online to place wagers.

Aintree Rcaecourse Home Of The Grand NationalAintree Rcaecourse Home Of The Grand National

Live Streaming Trends

If you cannot make it to the horse races in person or watch it on a live television broadcast, you can now tune into live streaming on your chosen bet platform or another approved source.

The increase in live streaming trends is making it easier for bettors to spectate horse races in real-time to make any last minute wagers with in-play betting rather than taking the risk to make a futures or ante-post bet before the race even begins. 

Online Sports Betting Is Expected To Have An 8.3% Increase

The total revenue for online sports betting is projected to reach $4.56 billion in 2024, which is an expected 8.3% increase in earnings compared to the revenue generated in 2023. With a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.53%, the market is expected to generate a volume of $5.69 billion by 2029. 

The sport type that is labeled “Other” on a segmented graph on Statista that displays how much was made from each sport shows about $1.7 billion in earnings. Horse racing is not in the original list of sport segments, so it can be inferred that some, if not all, of this figure could have been generated from horse racing bets. 

Horse Race Betting Turnover Was Almost 120 Million British Pounds In 2022

Horse race betting turnover accumulated 119.29 million British pounds in the United Kingdom in 2022. About 12 years earlier, horse race betting turnover was at an industry high of 282.99 million British pounds.

Inflation and other economical changes influenced the huge change in the turnover value over the past decade, but it looks like the turnover is back on a steady up and up as the economy continues to improve and punters gain more access to disposable income again after a rebound from a downturn in the nation's economy. 

Betting at Royal AscotBetting at Royal Ascot


Horse racing continues to be a widely spectated sport, especially in the United Kingdom. Between the surge in online sports betting popularity throughout the country and the Brits’ level of disposable income, betting on horse racing is still a favorite pastime amongst the locals. 

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