Historically, Italy has been one of the leading European horse racing nations, albeit some respects behind Great Britain, Ireland and France in size and prestige. The late Italian horse breeder Federico Tesio was particularly notable. In recent years, however, the sport in the country has suffered a major funding crisis, culminating in its expulsion from the European Pattern.[42]
The odds are often skewed by passionate fans who’ll bet on their team no matter what. Sometimes, it pays off for them though. In 2011, one anonymous baseball fan bet $250 that the St. Louis Cardinals would make the World Series at odds of 500. This person then bet another $125 that they would win the World Series at 999 in odds. The Cardinals hardly looked impressive at the time of the bet, but soon started winning games at a surprisingly consistent rate. They ended the year as the most unlikely World Series champions and the fan picked up $375,000 in return for his faith.

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Create accounts with a few sportsbooks. In order to place bets, you have to have an account with at least one sportsbook, though it’s ideal to have at least three, because then you can compare offerings and place smarter bets. Some sportsbooks also offer signup bonuses, so be sure to shop around.[2] Most sportsbooks are available online these days, and some of the more popular sites include:
Ideally, the Sportsbook would like to have the same amount of money wagered on the two teams playing. If the Giants are playing the Colts and they have one player betting on the Giants and one player betting on the Colts they would pay the winner $100 but collect $110 for the loser. This gives them a $10 profit so they really don’t care who wins as long as they have an equal amount bet on each team. To accomplish this they assign a line or spread to make the contest equally attractive for both sides.
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The original King’s Plates were standardized races—all were for six-year-old horses carrying 168 pounds at 4-mile heats, a horse having to win two heats to be adjudged the winner. Beginning in 1751, five-year-olds carrying 140 pounds (63.5 kg) and four-year-olds carrying 126 pounds (57 kg) were admitted to the King’s Plates, and heats were reduced to 2 miles (3.2 km). Other racing for four-year-olds was well established by then, and a race for three-year-olds carrying 112 pounds (51 kg) in one 3-mile (4.8-km) heat was run in 1731. Heat racing for four-year-olds continued in the United States until the 1860s. By that time, heat racing had long since been overshadowed in Europe by dash racing, a “dash” being any race decided by only one heat, regardless of its distance.

Many of the biggest players in sports betting can trace a lineage directly to the Benter-Woods axis. For example, the Australian press has called Zeljko Ranogajec “the world’s biggest punter.” Today he runs a global algorithmic gambling empire, but he began his career in Las Vegas counting cards with Benter and Woods, then followed them to Hong Kong. During a rare interview in London, Ranogajec said, “A substantial portion of our success is attributable to the pioneering work done by Benter.”

Horse racing was once again the sport of choice for one anonymous punter who secured an £823,000 win from a £19 accumulator bet. The odds were high but the larger bet stake allowed the individual to win such a high amount. The lucky winner was from the UK county of Leicestershire and bet on a 5-fold from a selection of horse racing meets back in April of this year. The bet remains the largest ever win paid out by bookmaker Coral.
The same historical progression was followed for wagers, with the bets in early (two-horse) races being simply to win and modern bets being placed on the first three horses (win, place, and show). From private bets, wagering was extended in the 19th century to bookmaking (a bookmaker is a professional bet accepter who tries to set his odds so that a percentage is working in his favour). Later in that century, betting was taken over worldwide by the racetrack managements in the form of the pari-mutuel. This is a common betting pool in which those who bet horses finishing in the first three places share the total amount bet minus a percentage for the management. The pari-mutuel was perfected with the introduction in the 20th century of the totalizator, a machine that mechanically records bets and can provide an almost instant reflection of betting in all pools. It displays the approximate odds to win on each horse and the total amount of wagering on each horse in each of various betting pools. The customary pools are win, place, and show, and there are such specialty wagers as the daily double (winners of the first two races), perfecta (win and place winners in order in one race), quiniela (as in the perfecta but not in order), and trifecta (win, place, and show winners in order in one race). Other specialty wagers, sometimes offering extremely high payouts, require the bettor to select multiple trifectas, the winners of several races, or the first four horses in one race.
Historically, equestrians honed their skills through games and races. Equestrian sports provided entertainment for crowds and displayed the excellent horsemanship needed in battle. Horse racing of all types evolved from impromptu competitions between riders or drivers. The various forms of competition, requiring demanding and specialized skills from both horse and rider, resulted in the systematic development of specialized breeds and equipment for each sport. The popularity of equestrian sports through the centuries has resulted in the preservation of skills that would otherwise have disappeared after horses stopped being used in combat.[8]
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