Would horse racing exist without betting?

Off Topic by JonFriedberg Posted

It's confusing to me how horse racing is so mainstream, especially in so many 'non-gaming' states. Would the sport even exist if it weren't for betting and gambling? And how are so many corporate sponsors involved when they won't touch other forms of gaming. Seems like it is 99% wagering and 1% love of the sport, unlike NFL which is closer to 50/50.


  1. Whenever people are willing to impose their "morality" on others inconsistency and hypocrisy are never very far away.

    In this case I suspect it has something to do with the origination of the "sport of kings" thing and the general level of society that horse racing is associated with compared with other forms of gaming.

  2. People have been racing horses as long as there have been people and horses. Horses like to run, and people like to compete. In the US, Saratoga race course is the oldest sporting venue of any kind. The biggest race events with the richest purses in the world are in Dubai, which does not permit any betting. Would people still play games with various kinds of balls if, say, betting on them was not permitted, or perhaps allowed only by going way out west far from population centers in some hot & dusty piece of the Mojave desert?

  3. @Drawing Dead No sign of betting here: http://www.dubai-horse-racing.com/

  4. @pokervane Your "here" that you linked to is in ENGLAND. You didn't think the "Ladbrokes" and "Paddypower" and "BetFred" sites they are steering web traffic to were connected to the United Arab Emirates, did you? Here's a hint: the language used in Dubai is not English, it is Arabic, what with it being part of the "United ARAB Emirates."

    Guess what, people in Britain also bet on all sorts of US and other nations' sports as well, without regard to whether those wagers are legal in those other countries, as they seem to be under the impression that they are their own separate sovereign nation with exclusive jurisdiction over their own citizens for some reason. They even book bets in Britain for things like US elections and the Oscars too which would not even be legal in Las Vegas.

    And, it is also possible to legally bet on Dubai racing in a purely US pool, right from your living room in most states on HRTV and other US licensed pari-mutual wagering services. Seems the US also has this quaint notion that it is a separate sovereign country of its very own, not subject to laws of Dubai.

    But you most definitely CAN'T do it legally in Dubai (2 yrs in prison if you're caught), and the people booking bets in other counties are not connected to Dubai or their racecourse, which derive no revenue from what people in other countries do.

  5. @pokervane So you don't have to take my word for it, you can take it from the horse's mouth here:


    Scroll to the bottom.

  6. @Drawing Dead I assure you I wasn't taking your word for anything.

  7. @pokervane Well thank you. Sincerely. You just helped me arrive at a clear decision on something I wasn't quite sure about.