Horse racing is a competitive sport. It involves two or more jockeys (horse riders) competing against each other, riding horses to see who reaches the finish line first. The race course takes various forms and can be performed on different lengths. Sometimes races are further defined by specific horse breeds, obstacle courses or running styles. Although horse racing is a popular sport for spectators, it is also popular among people who play. For example, in 2008, gambling on horse racing was valued at around $ 115 billion worldwide.
History of horse racing
Horse racing is an ancient sport that took place throughout ancient Greece, Syria, Rome and Egypt. This sport has also been referenced in ancient mythological stories of Norse culture. Horse racing was a sport in the 648 BC Greek Olympic Games. It was so important for the Roman Empire that for about 400 years (from mid 1400 to 1882), the annual spring carnival ended with a horse race. His popularity never declined and thoroughbred racing horses later became a common sport with the British upper class and the royal family. Some people believe that horse races have preserved equestrian skills that would otherwise have been lost when horses were no longer used for war.
The largest places for horse racing
Several countries around the world have established places for horse racing where spectators can watch riders and their horses. Here are the three largest horse racing venues (for spectator capacity) in the world:
The Tokyo hippodrome is located in Fuchu in Tokyo. This venue can accommodate 223,000 people with seats for spectators 13,750. It was built in 1933 and now hosts many competitions every year. The most famous of these races include the Japan Cup, the Japanese Derby and the Yasuda Kinen. The course itself measures 1.25 miles in length and 234 feet in width. In total, the Tokyo Hippodrome offers five tracks: A path (on the hedge), route B (3 meters from the rail), route C (6 meters from the rail), route D (9 meters from the rail), and E-Course (12 meters from the rail).
In 2007, the Tokyo hippodrome was subjected to renovations, including an improved grandstand. Today, the venue has the largest video screen in the world, 218 feet wide by 37 feet tall.
The second largest horse racing venue in the world is the Nakayama Hippodrome, located in Funabashi, in Chiba, Japan. Here, up to 165,676 spectators can watch the races. It was built in 1990 and offers two grass fields, a land field and a jump field. The Nakayama racecourse has three tracks: a path (on the hedge), route B (3 meters from the rail) and route C (7 meters from the rail). The runs that run here range from the 1,000 meter to the 4,000 meter, depending on the track used. Some of the most famous jumping competitions performed here include the Nakayama Grand Jump and the Nakayama Daishogai.
The third largest horse racing venue in the world is Churchill Downs, located in Lexington, Kentucky, in the United States. This hall can accommodate up to 165,000 spectators. It was opened in 1875, after two more racing venues in Kentucky had been closed. In its first year, the Churchill Downs office held the first run of the Kentucky Derby, the most famous horse racing event in the United States. Other famous races hosted here include Kentucky Oaks, Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, Stephen Foster Handicap and Clark Handicap. It has two identical spiers above the stand, which are used as symbols of both the route and the Derby.