It’s never been easier to not only bet on horse racing, but to watch the action too. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about live horse racing betting. We’ll list the best streaming sites, reveal where you can stream races for free, discuss live horse racing betting shows and commentary, and much more.
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As a British bettor, you actually have quite a few options when it comes to horse racing streaming sites. Not all of these are created equal, however, and – when deciding which to go with – these are the four key areas you should focus on.
The top bookies will let you stream all British and Irish horse races. This will include not only regular meets, but also the biggest events around, such as Royal Ascot and the Grand National.
In addition, look for sites such as Bet365 which stream international races, in countries like Australia. You might not bet on these races on a weekly basis, but when a massive contest like the Melbourne Cup rolls around, you’ll be glad of the option to watch it easily.
You shouldn’t just be limited to streaming on your computer. Instead, the bookie’s app should also include their streaming feature. Be sure to confirm this before signing up, and check out the actual quality of the stream too. With Betfred, for example, you’ll find almost no drop-off between the mobile and desktop versions of the streaming service.
Modern betting sites will rarely charge much for their streaming service, but this is still something you must check. If streaming is free – as on MansionBet – that’s obviously fantastic. You should never need to spend more than £1 to watch a race, though (excepting Betfair, which has a £2 minimum stake).
You should be able to pick up and start using the streaming service immediately, with no acclimation required. Again, this is something you should check before signing up. Gauge how easy it is to see which races are being streamed, and the simplicity of starting and using the tool thereafter. SpreadEx is just one example of a site with a faultlessly-streamlined interface.
There are certain times when you won’t be able to actually watch a race, but still want to follow it live. Working in an office – in which others can see your screen – is a classic example. In these cases, it pays to also have an audio-only live commentary option available – as on William Hill – through which you can simply listen to the action unfolding.
At a basic level, live streaming of horse races is simply a fun feature to have. In this form of gambling particularly – which relies so heavily on statistical study – you really can get lost in the numbers. By actually watching the races unfold, you restore some measure of enjoyment to the activity. It also gives you an immense feeling of satisfaction when one of your picks does win, compared to simply seeing the results coming through on your screen.
In addition, there are a couple of practical benefits to watching racing streams. While it can’t help your wagers at that exact moment (in-play horse racing betting is basically non-existent, due to the nature of the sport), it can definitely inform your future picks.
Even with the aforementioned emphasis on statistical analysis, the eye test still has a place in horse racing betting. By watching a horse run for yourself, you can get a feel for it which simply isn’t possible otherwise.
Most importantly, you might see that it was simply unlucky in one race. Perhaps it didn’t get out of the gates at the off, or was otherwise hampered during the event. Heading into the next race, therefore, you can then predict that – without an unlikely second strike of bad luck – the horse will perform much better. In turn, this could provide you with a great value pick.
If you simply read the results after a race, you’ll never pick up on these nuances. By watching the races for yourself, you can form an opinion which is vastly more useful, and which can then inform your future wagers.
In addition to simply providing streams of races, some bookies will also produce live horse racing betting shows for their users, with Sky Bet being the market leader in this area. Sporting Life and the Racing Post also provide similar services, and William Hill’s audio-only services – discussed later – tick the same boxes.
With dozens of events taking place on any given day, at racecourses all around the country, these can be a brilliant way to keep up with the latest goings-on. They’ll give you the latest news on any runners which have dropped out of a race, and report the weather conditions at each track.
If you’re a serious punter, these shows can also help you get significantly better prices on your bets. That’s because they allow you to watch the odds changing in real time. If you’ve identified a particular runner in an upcoming race, for example, your live betting show should clearly display the latest odds movements for that horse. If you see a sudden rise before the off, you can pounce immediately with a wager before the price settles again.
In general, the more information you have, the better your horse racing picks will be. Having one of these live betting shows running on your desktop or mobile device is the easiest way to stay informed with the latest goings-on.
Odds can change dramatically over time. That’s true in all sports betting, but it’s particularly prevalent in horse racing. On any given market, prices can fluctuate significantly between their initial point and the off. This might be a result of changing weather conditions, punters reacting to prior price changes, or bookies trying to drive more action.
Taking advantage of these live price changes is key to making a long-term profit. With a £20 stake, a successful race winner bet at 10/1 will net you a tidy £220 return. Keep watching that horse though, and – if the price rises and you get them at 11/1 instead – you’ll get £240. Replicate this enough times, and all those extra £20 profits will accumulate into a truly significant sum.
You cannot simply rely on Best Odds Guaranteed deals in this regard. Remember that they will only give you the better option out of the odds you originally took and the starting price. They will not automatically upgrade your odds if the price improves between those two times.
Finally, while taking advantage of these live price movements is key, it certainly helps if you’re given good odds to start with. On the three sites below, that will almost always be the case.
Modern-day sportsbooks make it commendably easy to watch their live horse racing streams. To help clarify matters though, here’s a step-by-step guide on exactly how to do so. We’ll use BoyleSports as our example bookie here, but the process will be extremely similar elsewhere.
All bookies will need you to create an account with them before using their streaming services. To do so, head to the home page of the site, then click the ‘Join’ button (or similar). This should open a registration window. Simply follow the instructions thereafter, which will involve providing personal information (like your name and address), and setting account details (i.e. a username and password).
Most sportsbooks have certain requirements in order to watch their streams. There are two main types here.
The first is to bet on the race you want to watch, usually with a stake of at least £1. To do so, find the event yourself within the horse racing section, or simply use the function. Then click the odds next to your chosen horse, tick the ‘E/W’ box in the betslip if you want to place an each way, set your stake, and hit ‘Place Bet’.
An alternative condition is that you must have wagered on racing within the previous 24 hours. Naturally you can follow the same steps to satisfy this requirement.
The second common requirement for live racing streaming is simply to have a positive account balance. To fund your account, just log in and click the ‘Cashier’ button (or similar). Then pick your payment method of choice, fill in the required details, enter the amount you wish to deposit, and complete the payment.
Your betting account should now be ready for streaming. Find the event you’re interested in within the horse racing section. If that race is eligible for streaming, you should see a corresponding icon next to it.
Once you’ve found the right race, click on it to open its individual markets. You should now see an option to stream the race too. Simply click that too to open up the player and the stream should begin shortly before the off.
All of our recommended live streaming bookies for racing have both mobile websites and dedicated mobile apps available. In almost all cases, betting apps are provided for both iOS and Android users, and all are completely free of charge to use.
If streaming is a priority for you, you’ll find that most of these apps actually match up very well indeed with their desktop counterparts. The live streaming tool will always be carried over, and you’ll find exactly the same races being covered. There’s barely any drop-off at all in terms of streaming quality nowadays either, although naturally this is partly dependent on your internet connection.
Pick one of our recommended bookies with a high quality app, and you can basically carry a fully-featured racing betting experience with you in your pocket. You’ll be able to not only bet on races while on-the-go, but watch them too, with the requirements for doing so being either low or non-existent.
When it comes to their mobile apps, here’s how each of our 10 recommended streaming sites shapes up.
As noted, there are certain situations in which you won’t be able to watch a race, but will still want to keep up with it. You might be stuck in the office, perhaps, or exercising. In these situations, live commentary is a life-saver. Here are three betting sites which provide this valuable service for racing (in addition to video streaming).
William Hill provides the best all-round racing commentary on the market right now. In fact, they have a dedicated service for this, called William Hill Radio. This features live horse racing betting commentary for major races across the world, along with the latest news, previews, betting tips, interviews, and more. It’s also completely free to use, even if you don’t have a William Hill account.
Ladbrokes has some of the best coverage around, not just for its streaming, but for its live horse racing betting commentary too. You’ll find races from across the UK and Ireland represented, plus those in France, South Africa, and the USA. You don’t even need to have placed any bets to use this service, merely requiring a positive account balance to do so.
Via powerful partnerships with channels like Racing TV and Sky Sports Racing, Paddy Power is able to offer video streaming of a huge range across the UK and Ireland, France, and elsewhere. The vast majority of these come with high quality commentary included, which can usually be accessed seamlessly via both the desktop version and mobile app.
In the past, it would have sounded outlandish for a bookie to give things away for free. Nowadays, in the hyper-competitive modern sports betting landscape, it’s commonplace. Horse racing punters can now receive the likes of betting tips and event previews regularly, for no charge at all, with Betfair being especially outstanding in this area.
With most sportsbooks, you will need to fulfil certain obligations before you can use their streaming service. This will usually either be placing a wager on the race you want to watch, or having at least bet within the past 24 hours. In the best cases though, you can watch live horse racing completely free, with SpreadEx and MansionBet both providing this service. Other times, you may simply need to have a positive account balance with the bookie, which is Bet365’s rule. Either way, you’re being given an extremely valuable and enjoyable betting tool for effectively no spend.
Elsewhere, there’s one other place British bettors can watch racing for free. ITV Racing can be watched on TV or via an excellent mobile app, with top-notch coverage of some of the top courses in the UK provided every Saturday.
When carried out responsibly, horse racing betting can be an incredibly fun pastime. Thanks to the neverending nature of the racing calendar, it’s also one that can basically be pursued all year round.
Actually watching the races, however, really can take your enjoyment to the next level. There’s no substitute for the excitement of watching your wagers play out in real time, nor for the satisfaction derived from seeing a perfectly-researched pick bearing fruit. Not only that, but actually watching the races yourself can help to inform your future picks in significant ways, helping you to make judgements on horses that would otherwise be impossible.
As a British bettor, you’re actually spoiled for choice when it comes to sites which allow you to streaming races. That includes events not just in the UK and Ireland, but across Europe and further afield too. In some cases, you’ll also find live horse racing betting shows to inform your selections. We’ve listed 10 of your best options at the top of this page, and you can check out our number one pick below. Now all you need to do is pick one, fulfil any minimum requirements, sit back, and enjoy some high quality horse racing streaming.
We’ve listed 10 of your very best options above. Our top all-rounder is SpreadEx, which features not only live streaming, but both fixed odds and spread betting options too. All our recommended sites should give you a smooth, enjoyable streaming experience though.
Prices for races can change significantly in the build up to the off. At a basic level, this happens because bookies are adjusting their odds to drive more or less action on a particular runner. By monitoring these changes closely, you can net yourself some key extra value.
Sky Bet provides arguably the best video version, while William Hill has brilliant audio-only alternatives. In both cases you’ll learn about all the latest news and price changes for free.
Most streaming sites will let you watch races from across the UK and Ireland each day. The bigger bookies will also cover events in Australia, France, South Africa, and elsewhere.
The nature of horse racing means this isn’t really feasible on sportsbooks. The only place which consistently offers ‘in-running’ markets is the Betfair exchange.
Joe is a highly-experienced writer, with a focus on sports betting content. His specialties include sportsbook reviews and betting tips. A keen football fan, he also loves analysing and writing about the beautiful game.
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