A Guide to the Best Horse Racing Betting Sites in South Africa in 2023

Horse racing has a long and illustrious history in South Africa, with races having been held in the Rainbow Nation for over 200 years! And in this comprehensive guide to horse racing and betting, we will outline the best horse racing betting sites in South Africa, including details of new and existing customer deals, horse racing betting tips, payment methods and specific bonuses relating to the Sport of Kings!


The Best Horse Racing Betting Sites in South Africa in 2022

  • All
  • Refer a Friend Bonus
  • Racing Live Streaming
  • Racing Tipping Competition
  • Racing Betting Tips
  • Racing Betting Stats
  • Racing Betting Guides
  • New Customer Deal
  • Racing Free Bets
  • Racing Accumulator Insurance
  • Racing Accumulator Loyalty Bonus
  • Racing Tips
  • Bet Calculator
  • Cashout
  • Ante-Post Betting
  • Live streaming
  • New
  • VIP Programme
  • Harness Racing Betting
  • Racing Accumulator Bonus
  • Best Odds Guaranteed
  • Bet Boosts
  • Horse Racing Tips
  • In play Betting Offers
  • Risk Free Bet
  • Bet Boost
  • Free Bet
  • Loyalty programme
  • Betting Blog
  • Accumulator Bonus
  • Cashback
  • Horse Racing Betting Tips
  • Horse Racing Price Boosts
  • Pool Betting
  • Horse Racing Accumulator Bonus
  • Betting Guides
  • More Filters
Top Rated

R25 Sign Up Offer


R25 Sign Up Offer

  • Betting guide with extensive statistics and worldwide racing tips
  • Free live streaming available through Gallop TV
  • Excellent range of horse racing betting markets
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Once you activate your Hollywoodbets account and you will receive a R25 Sign-up Bonus! For more information, contact our helpline on 087 353 7634. Terms and conditions apply.

Bet $10 Get $40


Bet $10 Get $40

  • Excellent range of horse racing offers
  • Horse racing live streaming
  • Daily horse racing special bets
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T&Cs apply. 18+

First Deposit Bonus 100% Up To $100


First Deposit Bonus 100% Up To $100

  • Generous new customer deal
  • Racing free bet offer if your selection loses
  • Easy to navigate site
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This offer is only available to new customers, who have registered and made their first real-money deposit at Sportaza. THe Bonus is 100% of a player's first deposit bonus up to 8,000 INR. In order to qualify for the bonus, hte player nmust play through the full amount of hte first deposit at least once with odds no less than 1.50. All bets must be settled.

This offer is only available to new customers, who have registered and made their first real-money deposit at Sportaza. THe Bonus is 100% of a player's first deposit bonus up to 8,000 INR. In order to qualify for the bonus, hte player nmust play through the full amount of hte first deposit at least once with odds no less than 1.50. All bets must be settled.

100% Bonus Up To R1,000


100% Bonus Up To R1,000

  • Racing accumulator bonus and insurance offers
  • Excellent new customer deal
  • Massive range of betting bonuses
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The bonus amount must be wagered 6 times (Sports bets must be taken at single bet min odds of 7/10 or 0.70, Multiple Min Odds of 12/10 or 1.20 and each leg must be 2/10 or greater) prior to bonus funds and associated winnings becoming withdrawable.

100% First Deposit Bonus Up To R2,000


100% First Deposit Bonus Up To R2,000

  • Risk-free opening bet up to R2,000
  • Variety of ongoing betting promotions
  • R5 million maximum payout on all sports bets
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100% Up To R1,000


100% Up To R1,000

  • Huge range of horse racing offers
  • Horse racing betting guides
  • Active on social media
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200% Bonus Up To $130


200% Bonus Up To $130

  • Well-established global betting brand
  • Huge selection of betting promotions
  • Excellent range of horse racing markets
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Register with 1xBet. Fill in your personal profile in My Account and enable the function "Take part in bonus offers". Deposit any amount from 1$. The bonus is automatically credited to a customer's account after they make a deposit.

100% deposit match up to R1,000


100% deposit match up to R1,000

  • Horse racing accumulator bonus
  • Horse racing price boosts
  • Generous welcome offer
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100% Up To R10,000


100% Up To R10,000

  • Durban July ante-post betting available
  • Great range of race meetings and markets
  • Racing pool betting available
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Welcome Offer R50 Free Bet


Welcome Offer R50 Free Bet

  • Horse racing accumulator bonus
  • Good range of existing customer promotions
  • International horse racing markets
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A Closer Look at the Top 5 Horse Racing Betting Sites

Now that we’ve introduced the top ten horse racing and betting sites in South Africa it’s time to take a closer look at our five favourites:

1. Hollywoodbets – The sponsorship king

With a host of high profile sponsorships including Greyville and Scottsville racecourses, along with the entire Durban July meeting, the Hollywood horse racing and sports betting site is not only one of the biggest, but one of the best-known bookmakers in South Africa. They certainly aren’t taking their reputation for granted though as there is a huge amount to like about the Hollywoodbets sportsbook, including the huge range of worldwide racing markets, live streaming options and their extensive horse racing gambling guide.

Hollywoodbets home page

What we like:

  • Extensive betting guide with statistics and worldwide racing tips
  • Huge range of races to wager on
  • Excellent selection of bet types
  • Free live streaming available through Gallop TV
  • Rand deposits allowed
  • Refer a Friend bonus

What we don’t:

  • Underwhelming welcome offer
  • The huge amount of non-racing content on site could be confusing

2. BoyleSports – The betting giant from the Emerald Isle

When it comes to horse racing betting today, the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland have some of the best online horse racing sites, so it’s a real treat for South African punters to be able to access BoyleSports, one of the best Irish sportsbooks. And while it’s a shame that you can’t take advantage of their welcome bonus in South Africa, an industry-leading selection of horse racing betting offers more than makes up for it.

BoyleSports home page

What we like:

  • Hugely-respected and well-established bookmaker
  • Excellent range of racing offers
  • Ante-post bets on future races
  • Betting blog with racing tips
  • Live streaming   

What we don’t:

  • Welcome offer not available to South African punters
  • Deposits not offered in Rand

3. Sportaza – Showing the old guard how it’s done

Sportaza are a relatively new addition to the South African betting scene but they are making a huge impact, thanks to an eye-catching and user-friendly betting site, a generous new customer offer and a nice selection of existing customer deals, including a couple of offers catering specifically to horse racing.

Sportaza home page

What we like:

  • Generous new customer offer
  • Racing free bet offer if your selection loses
  • Excellent selection of race meetings and markets
  • Harness racing betting is available in addition to gallop horse racing betting
  • VIP programme
  • The site is easy to navigate 

What we don’t:

  • No live streaming
  • No betting app

4. bet.co.za – Great sportsbook, not so great name!

The name may not be the catchiest out there but bet.co.za is one of the best horse racing and betting sites available in South Africa, with enough racing bonuses, accumulator offers, free bets and tips to fill Lake Sibaya!

bet co za home page

What we like:

  • Excellent new customer offer
  • Accumulator bonus and insurance offers
  • Best odds guaranteed on all UK and Irish horse racing
  • Free bet if your horse is beaten by a horse priced 10/1 or higher
  • Bet Central betting blog with horse racing betting guide and tips
  • Huge range of multi-sport existing customer deals

What we don’t:

  • No live streaming
  • The “Bet Central” Blog is great but difficult to find!

5. 1xBet – Worldwide big-hitter

Very few bookmakers have a more extensive worldwide footprint than 1xBet, who have been servicing millions of punters all over the globe for more than a decade. And a good look at the site will tell you exactly why, with a huge amount of content for punters to enjoy (perhaps even a little too much!) and a huge range of racing markets to wager on.

1xBet SA Home Page

What we like:

  • Rand deposits available
  • Excellent range of worldwide racing markets
  • Ante-post bets on future races
  • VIP Programme
  • Multi-sport existing customer offers 

What we don’t:

  • Lack of racing-specific offers
  • Layout can be confusing to new customers

How We Rank the Best South Africa Horse Racing and Betting Sites

When it comes to horse racing betting today, the top South Africa horse racing betting sites outlined in this article all have a huge amount going for them, but the fact remains that they also have a great deal in common, such as being safe and trustworthy. So it would certainly be useful to tell you exactly how we distinguish between the very best SA horse racing and betting sites, so that perhaps you can apply those same principles when picking your next sportsbook.

  • Horse Racing Offers

    One of our major concerns is earmarking sites that have existing customer deals relating specifically to horse racing, which can enhance your betting experience and help maximise your winnings and minimise your losses. Standard racing deals include “Best Odds Guaranteed”, where you will be paid out at a higher price if your horse wins at lower odds than when you placed your initial bet, or free bets if your horse finishes second. Then there’s multiple bet or “accumulator” insurance, where all or part of your multiple bet will be refunded if one selection loses, or even a bonus added to winning accumulator wagers. And many bookies will still pay out if your horse wins but is then demoted after a Steward’s Enquiry. And when it comes to horse racing offers, bet.co.za may be a new addition to the betting scene but they are certainly making a statement with a huge number of deals!

  • New Customer Deals

    It’s important to be aware of any new customer offers that may be featured on a horse racing betting site, as it could lead to some useful extra funds to spend on your racing wagers! The main form that a welcome bonus usually takes is the first deposit match, where some or all of your initial deposit will be matched by the horse racing betting site. However, some sites will offer a free bet of a specific amount when you sign up, and while it is rarer, the risk-free first bet is sometimes given to new customers signing up for a South Africa horse racing betting site. And betxchange offers far and away one of the best new customer offers out there.

  • Selection of Horse Races Covered

    The majority of horse racing betting enthusiasts in South Africa will of course be interested in racing from Turffontein, Greyville, Vaal, Scottsville, Bloemfontein and the many other tracks up and down the country. However, the Sport of Kings’ popularity extends worldwide and there are a huge amount of races to bet on every day in the UK and Ireland, France, the USA and Australia. And races such as the Melbourne Cup, Grand National, Arc de Triomphe and the Derby attract millions of bets worldwide. So any horse racing betting site worth a dime should always have a varied selection of worldwide racers to wager on. And if they can offer harness racing betting in addition to gallop horse racing wagers then all the better! And Betway certainly fits that profile.

  • Types of Bets

    While betting on horse racing does not offer as many markets as sports such as football and rugby, any sportsbook that merely offers win or each-way betting is not going far enough. The top horse racing betting sites provide markets such as place only, betting without the favourite, fallers insurance, distance betting, ante-post markets and even pool betting that works differently from regular fixed-odds wagering. And we’re pleased to report that Sportingbet has an excellent range of horse racing betting markets.

  • Special Features

    Streaming live horse races can make your gambling experience even more immersive and is proving to be increasingly popular in the Rainbow Nation. And if a horse racing betting site can add some horse racing betting guides or even horse racing betting tips from experts to help you pick a winner, then they will almost certainly earn their customers’ loyalty. And BoyleSports are top of the list when it comes to special features.

Key Features Of The Best Online Horse Racing Betting Sites

Bookie Ante-post Betting Horse Racing Tips Live Streaming Best Odds Guaranteed Accumulator Offers
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Sportaza fa shield close fa shield close fa shield fa shield close fa shield close
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1xBet fa shield fa shield close fa shield fa shield close fa shield
logo boylesports fa shield fa shield fa shield fa shield fa shield
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betxchange fa shield fa shield fa shield close fa shield close fa shield
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The Best Horse Racing Betting Systems

Just like with any other sport, it is important to have a strategy in place before you start wagering on horse racing. Of course, we can’t guarantee that you will win every bet, but what a good horse racing betting strategy does is help you make better-informed decisions ahead of taking a punt. It should also help you find winners more often than not. Here are some of the most popular:

Each-Way Betting

Each-way betting is a popular strategy in horse racing betting today, where instead of wagering on the winner of a race, you are betting on your horse “each-way”, which means you will secure a return if your horse wins or gets “placed”. Now, this is a slightly complicated bet to explain but it is essential for any horse racing bettor to know it!

The position your horse needs to finish in to be considered a place will vary depending on the number of participants in the race. And it is generally the first two in races of five to seven runners, the first three if it’s eight to 15, and then the first four if there are over 16 runners.

If your horse wins then you will make a profit on both the win and place elements of your bet but each part will be paid out at different odds. And that’s because while the odds for the win part of the bet will be the actual price, the place part of your bet will generally be a third, a quarter or even a fifth of the starting odds (depending on the amount of runners), all because your place bet has multiple chances to win! Your wager will also be different if it’s each-way as it will be comprised of a “win” part and a “place” element.

So let’s take a real-world example, and what better horse to use than one of the best in the business! So, you may want to bet R120 each-way on Rain in Holland at a price of 2.00, in a race with 11 runners.

You will need to spend R240 in total – R120 on the win part and R120 on the place element. If she reigns supreme once again you will receive R240 for your win bet, your R120 stake plus a profit of R120. On top of that, you will get R150 back for your place wager, which is your R120 stake plus a profit of R30, because the price for your place bet was 1.25, a quarter of the actual odds.

However, if Rain in Holland comes second or third the win part of your bet will be a loser but the place part will be a winner, so you will get R150 back, which is still a loss overall but is at least something!

And that last point is one of the main advantages of each-way betting, in that you are increasing your chances of getting something back, even if your horse does not win. Also, don’t forget that even if your selection is not victorious if the price is high enough you will still make a profit on an each-way wager.

Opposing the Favourite

One of the least profitable betting strategies in horse racing is blindly backing the favourite each and every time, because the lowest-priced horse only wins around 1/3 of the time in races worldwide. And even if it does the prices are often so low that you would have to bet a lot to make any wager worthwhile.

So it follows that opposing the favourite can be a profitable strategy. And to do that you need to identify conditions that might be in another horse’s favour such as recent form, the type of ground, race distance, and the weight they are carrying compared to the other runners. This will then enable you to identify runners that may have been underestimated by the bookies and could win at a tasty price!

Backing Multiple Horses

Many horse races are hugely competitive and you can often make a strong case for at least four or five of the horses winning. And as some of those runners will have higher odds attached then you can potentially bet on multiple horses in the race, knowing that if any of them wins you will make a profit. The key here is sizing your bets correctly so that you are betting smaller amounts on higher-priced horses and higher amounts on the favourites. And you can also extend this strategy by adding some each-way selections too.

Horse Racing Exchange Betting

You may have heard of horse racing exchange betting but are not sure exactly what it is, but luckily the concept is quite easy to explain. Exchange betting is unique in that not only can you back a horse to win or each-way like on a standard horse racing betting site, but you can also bet on a horse not to emerge victorious.

Check out the below example from Matchbook, the premier horse racing exchange betting site available to South African punters. The different exchange markets are listed along the top. Bets for a horse, the equivalent of backing them, are on the left-hand side. Wagers against a horse, also known as laying, are on the right.

Matchbook horse racing betting exchange

When you lay a bet you are essentially acting as a bookmaker and can set your own odds, which will need to be matched by another punter who is keen to back the horse at that price. if the horse loses you will win that bettor’s stake but if it wins, you will have to pay them their winnings.

Exchange betting also allows you to request a price to back a horse at, allowing you to potentially receive much more favourable odds if someone accepts these odds than you would betting on one of the standard online horse racing sites. There are far fewer exchange betting sites than fixed-odds sportsbooks, with Matchbook being our only recommended option in South Africa, but with this type of betting growing in popularity worldwide, we’re sure more will crop up in the future!

Horse Racing Lay Betting

There are many good reasons for laying a horse in a race, from betting against the favourite in a race full of high-quality horses, to simply opposing a runner that you think will struggle, because you think the ground or their weight may be unfavourable to them.

So taking the above example from Matchbook once again, if you wanted to lay the favourite, Fighter Allen, you would just need to click which price you want to offer in red and either choose those odds or adjust them in the bet slip which will have appeared on the right-hand side.

Matchbook horse racing betting exchange bet slip

That will be the price that you are happy to give to a potential punter and from there you need to add a stake, which is the amount you wish to make available for someone to bet against you. The higher the stake, the more you will win if the horse loses, but the more you will have to pay out if it wins! That is also called your liability, which will also be shown on your bet slip so you know exactly where you stand.

Top New Horse Racing Betting Sites in South Africa

The betting industry is a fearsomely competitive one, with new sportsbooks cropping up all the time, and there are certainly many advantages in choosing reputable horse racing betting sites that are new additions to the betting scene.

The primary reason is that new sites need to attract customers that may not have heard of them before, and the best way to do that is through an eye-catching new customer deal. All of which means the punter as the winner as you will often find the best offers at new sportsbooks. And their generosity will often extend to their existing customer deals too, as retaining customers is also key.

So here’s our pick of the best new horse racing betting sites out there:

The Most Experienced Horse Racing Bookies

While we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend any of the new online horse racing sites outlined above, here at Sportslens you will often find us saying that choosing well-established and experienced sportsbooks is never a bad idea.

So it’s important to know who the most well-established and experienced bookmakers in our list are:

Hollywoodbets – R50 Refer a Friend Bonus

logo holywoodbetsThe Hollywood horse racing and sports betting site actually came from very humble beginnings, starting life as a small company that published and distributed horse racing cards in 1986. However, after opening their first betting branch in Durban in the year 2000, the sky was the limit, with a website following in 2006, a mobile site in 2009 and now they are one of the largest, most well-known and trusted betting brands in South Africa. And with some high-profile horse racing sponsorships, it’s clear that Hollywoodbets are also looking to carve out their name as one of the premier horse racing betting sites.

BoyleSports – Huge Range of Offers

logo boylesportsSouth African punters may not be familiar with BoyleSports but rest assured they are one of the biggest bookmakers in the world, having been set up over 40 years ago and with an online presence for the last 20 years. And catering primarily to the racing-mad British and Irish market means their racing betting credentials are top-notch too, with a host of horse racing treats including special offers and a huge range of markets.

Betway – R1,000 Welcome Bonus

logo betway 1With a decade in the business under their belts, Betway are another British-based bookmaker making a big splash in South Africa, thanks to an enticing combination of a superb welcome offer and all the features a racing betting fan could possibly want.

SportingBet – R2,000 Risk-Free Bet


With over 25 years of experience in the betting business, Sportingbet are one of the most trusted bookmakers available to South African punters. They are also one of the few horse racing betting sites we have come across to feature a risk-free bet as their opening offer, meaning you can aim for a big pay out with your first wager on the site, knowing that if it doesn’t come off you can get your money back!

The Best Horse Racing Betting Markets To Bet On

The top horse racing betting sites in South Africa all offer a great range of different markets. And here are the most popular bet types:

  • Win

    Many people like to keep things simple and bet on the outright winner of the horse race. And Hollywoodbets even offers a promotion where if your horse wins but is stripped of its title after a Steward’s Enquiry, you will still get paid out.

  • Each-Way

    Betting each-way is popular because it mitigates the risk of losing. There are two wagers in one here, so your unit stake doubles. You back a horse both to win and for a place. The precise nature of the place terms offered by bookies varies depending on the type of race and number of runners. Top horse racing betting sites like BoyleSports will have extra place races each and every day, giving you every incentive to put wagers on.

  • Exacta & Trifecta

    For punters wishing to boost their odds, Exacta and Trifecta bets are often a great option at sites such as betxchange. An Exacta (sometimes called a forecast) involves selecting the top two finishers in a particular race, while for the Trifecta (sometimes called a tricast) it’s three. And within each bet, you can either go for a straight line Exacta or Trifecta, in which you pick the exact finishing order, or a Box Exacta or Trifecta, where you select the top two or three in any order.

  • Without the Favourite

    There are times when the favourite is such a short price that there is little value siding with them. So in these cases, betting without the favourite becomes a popular alternative. Here, if your fancied runner beats the favourite and wins the race or finishes second to it, then the bet pays out. Among the top bookies, Betway has generous without the favourite markets.

  • Ante-Post

    There are pros and cons to betting on horse racing ante-post, yet it remains popular. Taking a punt in advance almost guarantees you better odds as fancied runners shorten up following final declarations and on the day of the race. However, you cannot bet ante-post in conjunction with bookmaker offers. You also are not guaranteed a run for your money. And Sportingbet offers a great range of ante-post betting odds.

  • Accumulators

    Although not quite so popular as on top soccer betting sites, accumulators or accas for short still have their place in horse racing. From doubles and trebles to more complex bets, all legs must win or place if you go each-way to receive a return. That can be tricky to pull off, yet the odds are multiplied ensuring massive profit if you pull it off. Also, bookmakers such as bet.co.za will often offer accumulator bonuses, boosting your winnings if your acca is successful, or accumulator insurance, where you will receive your money back as a free bet if exactly one leg of your bet is unsuccessful.

  • Specials

    Special bets are normally reserved for the very biggest meetings and races of the year, such as the Durban July, Sun Met, or the South African Derby. They may take the form of a unique bet aimed at a specific horse, such as “Aragosta to win by more than five lengths”, or even a jockey or trainer-related special bet such as “Mike de Kock to train more than 6 winners at the Durban July meeting”. And BoyleSports comes out on top here once again

The Best Horse Racing Betting Online Offers

All the best betting sites for horse racing have great offers. From welcome bonuses that new customers can use on the sport to other promotions, it is good for you to know what the top deals you can get are. Let’s take a look at the kings of the turf when it comes to horse racing betting offers:

1. Sportaza – Horse Racing Free Bet

Sometimes the simplest offers are the best and that’s certainly the case at Sportaza. And that’s because if you place a bet of at least €20 (around R330) at odds of 3.00 or more on a horse racing event and it’s a loser, you will be awarded a free wager on horse racing totalling half your stake, up to a maximum of €50 (roughly R800).

2. BoyleSports – Money Back if Second to the Favourite

Over at BoyleSports they have one of the best horse racing “Insurance” offers ,where your stake will be refunded as a free bet up to €20 if your horse finishes second to the SP favourite in the race.

3. Hollywoodbets – Refer a Friend

A nice way to boost your betting fund without spending any money is simply to refer a friend to the Hollywood horse racing and sports betting site and once they have signed up and wagered their R25 sign up bonus and a further R50, you will receive R50.

4. Sunbet – Beaten By a Head Or Less

We’re sure you will agree that one of the most frustrating outcomes in horse racing betting is when your selection is beaten by a tiny margin. Sunbet punters need not fear such an outcome though, thanks to their special offer, where as long as you have bet at least R100 on a horse to win, if it loses by a head or less you will be refunded half your stake as a free bet, up to a maximum of R500.

5. bet.co.za – Best Odds Guaranteed

Another frustration among horse racing punters is when you bet on a horse and it ends up winning at a higher price. Thankfully, some betting sites feature a “Best Odds Guaranteed” offer, which simply means that if you bet on a horse and it wins at a higher price, you will be paid out at the better odds, meaning your horse racing payouts will be as high as possible!

Horse Racing Betting Explained

You will come across lots of industry-specific terms when you wager online. Some will be familiar and some not so much! So no horse racing betting guide would be complete without a glossary:


A wager placed before the day of a race is often called an ante-post bet, and you will generally receive better odds for betting in advance.

Best Odds Guaranteed

A promise by a bookmaker that you’ll get paid out at the higher odds if the Starting Price on a horse is higher than when you backed it.

Betting Exchange

A sportsbook where you can both back and lay horses is called a betting exchange.


A multiple bet where you choose at least one horse to finish first or second in a specific six races in a particular meeting.


There is headgear that trainers can put on racehorses which helps them to concentrate while they are running. Blinkers, as their name suggests, shield a horse’s eyes from what is going on around them. This should in theory help them to run straighter and be less distracted by what is going on around them!


Another item of headgear, these allow a racehorse more peripheral vision than blinkers yet still block other runners from view on either side of them. A trainer may try cheekpieces before resorting to blinkers, or just to sharpen a horse’s performance up after wayward signs on previous races or in their work on the gallops.


A male horse aged between two and four who remains entire is called a colt. This applies to any horse who doesn’t have a gelding operation before the age of five. Thereafter, entire colts are simply referred to as horses.

Dead Heat

Where two or more horses cannot be split in a photo finish by the judge for determining places. In horse racing betting terms, the result of a dead heat is bookmakers paying out on both (or more) at half your stake wagered to the full SP.


The favourite is the horse with the shortest price available with the bookmakers for a particular race. Some favourites can be strong in that they may be odds-on, and others weak.


The Exacta is a type of wager where you are trying to successfully predict the top two finishers, either in a specific order (Straight Line Exacta), or any order (Boxed Exacta). Sometimes called a forecast on certain sites.


A female horse aged between two and four is called a filly. As three-year-olds, fillies can contest Classic races like the 1000 Guineas and The Oaks in the UK, plus their Irish equivalents.

Fixed Odds

Fixed odds betting is the traditional form of betting where a bookmaker will offer odds on a specific outcome in a race.


All horse races in the UK and Ireland are measured in miles and furlongs. There are eight furlongs in a mile. Horse races on the Flat in the British Isles range from five furlongs up to almost two-and-three-quarter miles. Jumps races in the UK and Ireland vary from about two miles to four-and-a-quarter miles.


Any male horse that has undergone a gelding operation is called a gelding. This is common in National Hunt horses, so that their reproductive organs don’t get in the way while jumping hurdles or steeplechase fences, but also among older Flat horses not wanted for breeding.

Grade 1

The highest level of races in South Africa, such as the Durban July or Sun Met, are called Grade 1 races, and attract the very best horses and biggest prize money.


A race where all the horses carry different weights, depending on past performance, is called a Handicap.


A betting term from the Exchange, which is a bet placed on a horse to lose.


Any female horse aged five and over is called a mare.


Any horse that is withdrawn for any reason following final declarations and horses coming under starter’s orders for a race is called a Non-Runner. Taking a horse out of the race, even at the last minute, can cause the market to change.


The industry abbreviation for Starting Price. These are the odds that a horse was sent off in the race with fixed odds bookmakers. SP used to be calculated based purely through on-course betting but this changed to consider an aggregate of leading online bookmakers. It is also referred to as the price a horse returned at.


The Trifecta is a type of wager which is similar to an Exacta but this time you are trying to successfully predict the top three finishers, either in a specific order (Straight Line Trifecta), or any order (Boxed Trifecta). Sometimes called a tricast on certain sites.

Where to Get the Best SA Horse Racing Betting Odds

With a huge number of bookmakers vying for the attention of punters who just love a bet on horses, and an even larger number of races every day, no horse racing sports betting site could ever claim to have the best odds across the board. However, some sites are consistently strong when it comes to SA horse racing betting odds, with the best three outlined below:

Top 3 SA Horse Racing Betting Sites for Best Odds Guaranteed

  1. Hollywoodbets – R25 welcome offer
  2. Sportingbet – R2,000 welcome offer
  3. Betway – R1,000 welcome offer

Top Horse Racing Betting Sites With a Live Horse Racing Stream

Live streaming is becoming an increasingly sought-after feature on horse racing sports betting sites, particularly as more and more people are taking advantage of betting apps where they can wager and watch a live horse racing stream on the go. Live streaming is not widespread among South African sportsbooks but there are some that offer this feature, including the World Sports Betting horse racing site, which didn’t quite make it onto our main list but features here thanks to an extensive live horse racing stream service:

Bookmaker Requirements for horse racing live stream Visit bookie
logo holywoodbets Sign up to Gallop TV for free through a link on the Hollywoodbets racing page Watch Now
logo boylesports Minimum bet of £1/€1 on the race Watch Now
Sportaza Funded account Watch Now
sportingbet Funded account Watch Now
worldsportsbettingza 1 No World Sports Betting horse racing site account needed Watch Now

Our Horse Racing Betting Guide to Big South Africa Meetings and Races

If you like to bet on horses then South Africa is a great place to be as there are many prestigious horse races and meetings throughout the year that attract huge amounts of interest in the betting community. In January the racing year starts in style with the Sun Met at Kenilworth, which is the richest race in South Africa.

Turffontein takes the stage in April with the Grade 1 Champion’s Challenge and the South African Derby. In May, Scottsville hosts the region’s only card to contain four Grade 1 races in one day, including the Tsogo Sun Sprint. And then there’s the small matter of one of the biggest races in South Africa, with the Grade 1 Durban July taking place in, you’ve guessed it, July at Greyville.

There’s also a huge appetite in South Africa for betting on the marquee international racing events, the biggest of which can be found below:

Race  Meeting Course Type Headline Race When Racecard
Dubai World Cup Night Meydan (Dubai) Flat Dubai World Cup March 9 races
Kentucky Derby Festival Churchill Downs (USA) Flat Kentucky Derby May 14 races
Derby Festival Epsom Downs (UK) Flat The Derby May/June 3 Group 1 races including 2 Classics
Royal Ascot Ascot (UK) Flat Prince of Wales’s Stakes June 8 Group 1 races
Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe Longchamp (France) Flat Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe October 6 Group 1 races
Melbourne Cup Carnival Flemington (Australia) Flat Melbourne Cup November 10 races
Breeder’s Cup Festival Keeneland (USA) Flat Breeders’ Cup Classic November 9 races

The Ultimate Horse Racing Betting Tips

Betting on horse racing remains so popular, but what about the tricks of the trade? Whether you are an experienced punter or a novice, you may not know how the pros and seasoned gamblers go about the serious business of maximising their winnings. Read on below as we reveal our top 3 horse racing betting tips:

Don’t Always Back the Favourite

As we’ve already outlined in this article, the favourite only wins around one-third of the time on average, so statistically, it’s a very bad play to spend all of your time backing favourites. By all means back favourites when you think they are a good price, but make sure you are also using your own knowledge and research to pick out horses further down the market who you think have a great chance. And don’t forget to utilise each-way bets to increase your chances of making a profit!

Do Your Research

Horse racing isn’t one of those sports where you can just bet on a horse because you like the name and expect to be successful! You need to arm yourself with as much data as possible so you can reach an informed decision. Studying stats, trends and form can help you, and while it won’t guarantee that you will bet on the winner, you will be much more likely to maximise your horse racing payouts.

Get Your Bets on Early

The sooner you place your horse racing wagers, the better because taking sa horse racing betting odds early often provides you with higher prices that aren’t available closer to the race. And you may even find yourself in the fortunate position of betting on a horse that is subject to a huge amount of bets closer to the race, meaning the price will be pushed down significantly!

Don’t Chase Your Losses

We all know that feeling when you lose a bet and instantly want to make that money back again, but chasing your losses by betting on the next available race when you have not done your research is always a bad idea! So take a breath and wait for the next race you had planned to wager on!

The Last Word

That’s it for our guide to betting on horse racing online in South Africa. We hope this article will allow you to think about exactly what you want from a South African horse racing betting site and use the information contained here to make an informed decision. And by following our horse racing betting tips you will be able to make more informed betting decisions and most importantly, gamble responsibly. And of course, we wish you good luck on your horse racing betting journey!

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