Horses are, along with dogs, one of the man’s best animal friends. Since the rise of the first civilizations in the 3rd millennium BC, there have been numerous attempts to domesticate horses. The first document about horse breeding and riding was written in the 5th century BC by Xenophon. He mentioned certain uses horses had, like transportation, as well as certain combat roles (riding, chariots).
First European riding schools were established in Naples, and afterwards in Madrid and Vienna. But it were the French that began to systematically train horses on a larger scale. First horse races were held in England in 1174. It took them 200 years to spread to the continent, first appearing in France and Germany.
Although horse races were prevalent throughout history, they are currently more popular with older generations, which is why this sport is considered old-fashioned. However, horse racing is still very popular in England which is considered to be one of the most traditional nations in the world. In 2014, horse races were the second most popular sport in this country, right after football which was the most popular sport ever.
Bookmakers have recognized this and are regularly giving away gift codes to attract people into betting. So, if you are thinking about betting at Betway at the next Cheltenham festival, there might be free codes lying around on the Internet.
As for the popularity of this sport in the world, horse races did not get into the top 20 most popular sports in 2018. The major reason for that is the lack of interest in this sport among younger generations, and its popularity continues to drop. Experts believe that increasing popularity of the sport could only come by connecting bookies and the sport over the web, and therefore making it more approachable to everyday people.
Apart from England, another country where the sport is highly popular in Australia. The popularity of the sport in the land down under is probably found in historic foundations of racing and gambling in the country.
Being a participant in the sport is probably reserved for wealthy few who have enough funds to own horses. Prices of most expensive racing horses have gone as far as 70 million dollars, and modern wealthy Arab families give fortunes for the best thoroughbred horses.
Horse racing has been a prestigious sports event since its inception, and has often been associated with the beauty of both horses and ladies cheering for their champions from the stands. There are racing tracks in almost all major cities in the world, and the first thing that comes to one’s mind when thinking about the sport is elegance. There are many variants of sports with horses, and the thing all of them have in common is a combination of human talent with the power of this mighty and beautiful animal. Some sports which include horses are races, polo, rodeo, team races, equestrianism, wild horse racing, etc.
Races and Vices
Some people say that, in modern horse races, the line between moral and ethics was crossed by using performance-enhancing drugs on horses. Since this trend became widespread, strict controls were introduced for all major competitions. Horse races are often connected to gambling and huge sums of money being thrown around. This certainly is one of the reasons why this sport has been so popular over the years.