You don’t have to be a horse racing fan in order to enjoy reading this article. The main purpose of this article is to make the readers aware of fun and interesting facts about horses and horse racing. Based on studies it has been found out that Hyracothoreium was the name given to one of the first horses 50 million years ago. It is believed that this horse had toes and it took more than a million years for the horse to turn into a modern horse. Belonging to the equus family (Greek word for quickness), it is estimated that there are over 75,000,000 horses in the world. Even though their average life span is approximately 25-30 years, “Old Billy”, the oldest horse recorded till date, lived up to 62 years.
One of the most interesting facts about horses is that one can tell about their age depending on how many teeth they have. Surprisingly, a horse expends more energy while lying down rather than standing up. When it comes to racing facts there is unlimited information available. Horse racing started as a sport during 1500 BC in Egypt. Today, this sport has gained tremendous popularity all over the world. It started with harness racing that dates back to early Greece. Chariot races later turned into a source of entertainment for the people and this led to breeding of stronger and faster horses for military use, work and sports. It was in the year 1174 when the first public racecourse was opened in London. Initially, during 16th century, prizes were given to the winners in English racing but in 1780 the first sweepstake event was held which was originated by the 12th Earl of Derby.
19th century also witnessed the rise in popularity of Steeplechase in which the horses were raced in a course with shallow water jumps and hurdles. It was during this time that betting started being taxed and legalized at the tracks in the US. Today, the pari-mutuel wagering system is used at the tracks in America. But there are many states that have continued offering facilities for off-track betting. The Internet is filled with valuable and interesting information about horses and horse racing. So, if you want to know more facts do a quick research on the Internet.