The Top US Horse Racing Betting Sites in 2024

Written by: Richard Janvrin |✅Fact Checked and Updated March 2024 by: Michael Savio

The first horse betting sites emerged in the 1990s and early 2000s, and today, there are more platforms than ever to choose from. Horse racing betting is wildly popular as the races are short, and picking a winning horse can result in winning a lot of money.

Picking the winning horse can be difficult, but if you manage to, you’ll be rewarded for it. Below, usalegalbetting.com looks at the best sites to play at in 2023 and more.

Top Horse Racing Betting Sites

After looking across the Internet, we’ve found the top six horse racing betting sites that you can play at today. Below, we’ll look at each of them, including features, deposit methods, and general information.

FanDuel Sportsbook
FanDuel
BET $5 GET $150 In Bonus Bets If Your Team Wins
BetMGM Sportsbook
BetMGM
FIRST BET OFFER $1,500

New players only | 21+ | Must bet $10+ | PAID IN BONUS BETS | Free Bet expire after 7 days | Free Bet not included in winnings | Full T&C apply

TwinSpires
TwinSpires
Caesars sportsbook
Caesars Sportsbook
Get Up To $1,250 Back As Bet Credits
DraftKings Sportsbook
DraftKings
Bet $5, get $200 & 20%

FanDuel - Best Horse Betting App

FanDuel Sportsbook

In December 2022, FanDuel became one of the first online sportsbooks to launch an online horse racing betting platform. Here, new players will receive a $100 No Sweat Bet. The mobile app is phenomenal with FanDuel Racing as well as with TVG, which FanDuel operates in some states. It’s easy to navigate, and you can read race analysis courtesy of numberFire.

  • Features: Live Streaming, Article Content, Racing 101 Resource, cash out
  • Horse Racing Apps: iOS and Android
  • Deposit Methods: Online banking, debit card, credit card, PayPal, wire transfer
  • States: OH, NH, VT, MA, RI, DE, MD, NY, VA, WV, KY, IN, IL, MI, AR, LA, FL, SD, ND, WY, CO, NM, CA, and OR
  • FanDuel Sportsbook?: Yes
ProsCons
Accessible welcome bonusNo loyalty program
Great mobile app
Promotions for all upcoming races

DraftKings - Best Ownership Of All Horse Betting Sites

DraftKings Sportsbook

In November 2022, Churchill Downs Inc. announced that it would be launching a horse racing betting platform alongside DraftKings. It launched just before the Kentucky Derby in May 2023 in 16 markets. New players will receive a 100% deposit bonus worth up to $250.

  • Features: Horse Betting Guide, cash out
  • Horse Betting Apps: iOS and Android
  • Deposit Methods: Debit card, online banking, PayPal, VIP Preferred, Play+ Card, wire transfer, DK Gift Card, PayNearMe, Venmo
  • States: WA, IA, OH, OR, MT, WY, CO, MN, LA, IN, KY, FL, NY, MA, PA, MD, VA, WV
  • DraftKings Sportsbook?: Yes
ProsCons
Backed by Churchill Downs and DraftKingsNo live streaming
$250 deposit bonus offer
Simple user interface

BetMGM- Best Resources for New Online Horse Betting Players

BetMGM Sportsbook

One of the best sports betting sites, BetMGM, has launched a new horse racing betting platform, BetMGM Horse Racing. It first went live in October 2021 in Ohio, partnering with NYRA. BetMGM is currently offering a 100% deposit bonus of up to $200.

  • Features: Horse Racing Education Resource, cash out
  • Horse Betting Apps: iOS and Android
  • Deposit Methods: PayPal, PayNearMe, VIP Preferred, BetMGM Play+ Card, debit card, credit card
  • States: FL, LA, OH
  • BetMGM Sportsbook?: Yes
ProsCons
Fantastic resource for learning about horse racing betting
Streamlined interfaceAvailable in limited states
NYRA partnership

TwinSpires - Best Online Horse Betting Promotions

TwinSpires

TwinSpires, formerly known as BetAmerica when founded in 2007, is owned by Churchill Downs Inc. It acquired the platform in 2019. New players can earn up to $200 in bonus funds after making eligible deposits.

  • Features: Loyalty program, TwinSpires Edge, Live Streaming, cash out
  • Horse Betting Apps: iOS and Android
  • Deposit Methods: EZMoney, EZBank/Mazooma, credit card, GreenDot, Moneygram, PayNearMe, Apple Pay, bank wire, on-site deposits, check, money order, PayPal
  • States: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming
ProsCons
Churchil Downs Inc. ownershipWelcome offer terms and conditions are steep for new players
TwinSpires edge
Live streaming
Loyalty program

Caesars - Easiest Online Horse Betting User Interface

Caesars sportsbook

Caesars, another top online sports betting platform, entered the online horse racing betting market in mid-2022. The Racebook offers a deposit 100% deposit match of up to $500, depending on the state you play in. It offers various resources in its shop, such as Daily Racing Forms, TrackMaster FlashNet, and other things you can use to make more informed horse racing wagers.

  • Features: Shop, cash out
  • Horse Betting Apps: iOS
  • Deposit Methods : ACH bank transfer, credit card, debit card, Green Dot MoneyPak, PayNearMe, Apple Pay
  • States:  Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Montana, Ohio, Oregon
  • Caesars Sportsbook?: Yes
ProsCons
Welcome bonusNo live streaming
A shop that offers resources for cashNo Android app
Fantastic FAQ page
Straightforward user interface

TVG - The Most Widely Available Online Horse Betting Platform

Part of the FanDuel Group as of 2018 due to the Paddy Power Betfair and FanDuel merger, TVG is one of the most well-known horse racing sportsbook betting platforms in the country and is available in more than 30 states. As a new player, you’ll receive back up to $200 on your first wager if it loses with TVG bets.

  • Features: Live streaming, loyalty program, cash out
  • Horse Betting Apps: iOS and Android
  • Deposit Methods: Credit card, debit card, PayPal, prepaid card, PayNearMe, GreenDot MoneyPak, wire transfer, money order, check, deposit at the track
  • States: AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, LA, MD, MA, MI, MN, MT, NH, NJ, NM, NY, ND, OH, OR, PA, RI, SD, VT, VA, WA, WV, WY
ProsCons
Available in over 30 statesCould have more international track options
Fantastic live streaming
Welcome bonus

Horse Racing Betting Features

User Experience IconHorse racing betting is slightly different than online sports betting. While there are some notable features you can find on these sites, betting markets like live betting aren’t available.

That said, we’ll look at three features we often see.

Live Streaming

Horse races are happening worldwide at all hours of the day. These aren’t widely available on television or streaming networks. As a result, some sites have live streaming available where you can watch most of these sites live.

So, yes, you can make a bet, head to the live-streaming page, find your race, watch it, and move on. This is a massively important feature of horse racing betting sites.

Horse Racing Betting Resources

With the rise of online sports betting, there will be some carry-over to the online horse racing betting sphere. However, this is a completely different betting world than sports betting. A lot of sites, like FanDuel or BetMGM, offer resources that educate you about every betting market for horse racing betting. For example, if you’re wondering how to bet on the 2024 Kentucky Derby, you’ll learn about that with these resources.

Cash Out

Even with horse racing betting, you can use the cash-out feature. With cash out, you can bail from a bet early. These are most common with accumulator horse racing bets, which consist of four or more selections on a single bet. So, if the first two horses do well, you can cash out, take a portion of the winnings you’d get from all four, and use that money toward another bet.

How We Rank The Top Online Horse Racing Sites

You may be wondering how we arrived at the list of top horse racing betting platforms above, and that’s a fair question. Below, we’ll go over exactly how we research these sites.

Horse Betting Online Markets and Odds

With so many horse races happening worldwide, there are endless possibilities for things to bet on. We look for sites that cover as many races as possible and offer competitive odds compared to other sites nationwide.

Horse Racing Websites Coverage

We like to see sites that offer odds and have their own internal horse racing coverage. This is a resource that new players can look to help guide them. It’s not a dealbreaker if it’s unavailable, but it’s certainly something we enjoy.

Online Horse Betting Bonuses and Promotions

As expected, we look at horse racing sites with bonuses and existing player promotions. Welcome bonuses create a first impression for new players and offer an instant boon to their virtual wallet. As for existing player promotions, we look for sites with anything available that keeps the value going after the welcome bonus expires.

Horse Racing Betting Sites Mobile Experience

On top of having a mobile app, we check each site’s mobile app to see how it works. We look to see how similar it is to the desktop platform because we want them to be as similar as possible to eliminate any learning curve. A streamlined interface that also has proper menus for navigation is something we rate highly. We want players to land on a mobile app and intuitively determine where things are based on its layout.

Horse Betting Sites Banking and Payout Speed

As for deposit methods, our philosophy is “the more, the merrier.” The more options available, the more players can play, and the more possibilities there are for promotions. We also look for sites with multiple options and weigh them against withdrawal times.

Online Horse Racing Security and Trust

We’ll only ever recommend legal online horse racing betting sites. These sites are overseen by various racing commissions that demand a safe, secure, and trustworthy platform.

Horse Racing Betting Sites Customer Support

The most common customer support methods are live chat, FAQ, phone, and email support. On top of looking for those methods, we engage with them to ensure the representatives are knowledgeable, responsive, and able to resolve our issues.

Horse Racing Betting Key Features

In addition to everything else above, we look for sites with the previously mentioned features. These features, such as cash out, live streaming, and “101” resources, improve the experience as opposed to depositing funds, betting, and waiting for the next opportunity.

Horse Race Betting Online Promos and Bonuses

Across the top online horse racing betting platforms, you’ll find numerous bonuses and promotions that you can use to enhance your betting experience. Below, we’ll look at the bonuses and promotions you can expect to see right now.

  • Deposit Bonuses: With deposit bonuses, you’ll receive a percentage rate in which it’s matched up to a certain amount. For example, if the offer is a 100% match up to $1,000, you’ll receive bonus funds equal to 100% of whatever you deposit up to $1,000. These offers come with wagering requirements, which you must complete to withdraw the bonus funds you receive as cash.
  • Bonus Bets: Whether it’s the $10 No Sweat Bet from FanDuel or the $200 in bonus bets, many iterations of promotions involve “bonus bets.” The most common is receiving bonus bets back equal to your first wager, but only if it loses. For example, with the FanDuel offer, if your first bet up to $10 loses, you’ll receive it back in bonus funds.
  • Referral Bonus: This a straightforward offer—you have a unique link that you send to friends, they sign up, complete the requirements for the online horse racing platform, and you receive a bonus. TVG offers a $25 bonus.
  • Leaderboards: With leaderboard contests, you’ll climb rankings when available and receive prizes that correlate to where you finish on the chart. TwinSpires has the Twilight Thursday Leaderboard, which awards $2,500 every Thursday.
  • Boosts: Typically coming in the form of profit boosts, you’ll receive an uptick in winnings if you meet the requirements of the offer. For example, at TwinSpires, you’ll receive a 15% boost if you win Trifecta bets on Tuesday.

Guide to Horse Betting

Now that we’ve gone over the top sites and bonuses you can expect to receive, how exactly do you bet on horse racing? Below, we’ll go over how to do so step-by-step and go over the various markets.

How to Start Betting on Horse Racing

  • Review the sites we listed above.
  • Find which horse racing betting site works best for you. Make sure to evaluate the welcome bonus.
  • Create an account & make your first deposit while accounting for the welcome offer. Many deposit methods , including PayPal, credit/debit cards, online banking, are available
  • Head to the homepage and start browsing the menu of races that you can bet on.
  • Make a selection, add it to your betslip & complete the wager.
  • Wait for the results.

How Horse Betting Works

Below, we’ll dive into all the ways you can bet on horse racing, but before that, we’ll go over how to do it in general.
 
Above, we looked at a brief step-by-step guide, but we’ll flesh that out a bit more.
 
With horse racing betting, you’ll be engaging in pari-mutuel betting.

With pari-mutuel betting, this isn’t a betting market itself but rather a way that winnings are distributed. You’ll still have numerous betting markets, as we’ll show you below, but “pari-mutuel betting” is a term to describe how winnings are paid out.

Instead of betting on something with odds, winning, and receiving a payout based on those odds, you’ll instead wager, the funds from all bets on that choice are pooled together, and the payout is based on the number of wagers.

For example, let’s say there’s a race with eight horses, and the following is the amount of money wagered.

  • Horse 1: $100 wager
  • Horse 2: $50 wager
  • Horse 3: $75 wager
  • Horse 4: $150 wager
  • Horse 5: $100 wager
  • Horse 6: $50 wager
  • Horse 7: $110 wager
  • Horse 8: $100 wager

Between these wagers, the “pot” is $735. The winning horse was Horse 7, which garnered a $110 bet. Next, the commission is deducted and fluctuates from site to site, but let’s say it’s 10%.

You’d multiply the pot of $735 by 0.10, which is $73.5. You’ll then deduct this from the pot; the new total is $661.50.

To determine the payout per $1 wagered, you’ll take the $661.50, divide it by the winning wager of $110, and get $6.01, meaning that everyone who wagered on Horse 7 in this example would receive $6.01 per $1 wagered.

A percentage of the pool is kept by the site, known as the “vig,” which is similar to online sports betting.
 
With horse racing betting online, the vig can be upward of 30%, but that goes for both online and in-person, so that rate can fluctuate.
 
After the vig is accounted for, the winnings are then dispersed.

Online Horse Betting Markets and Betting Types

In horse racing betting, there are numerous markets available. You may be wondering what else is available besides picking which horse to win, and if so, you’ve come to the right place.

We’ll outline all of it below.

Straight Bets

  • Win: Pick which horse wins the race.
  • Place: Pick a horse that finishes first or second.
  • Show: Pick a horse that finishes first, second, or third.

Exotic Bets

  • Double: Pick horses you think to finish first in two different races.
  • Exacta: Pick the horses you think to finish first or second in the exact order.
  • Trifecta: Pick the horses you think to finish first, second, or third in the exact order.
  • Omni/Swinger: Pick the two horses you finish in the top three.
  • Quinella: Pick the horses you think to finish in first and second.
  • Superfecta: Pick two horses you think to finish in the top four.
  • Pick #: You’ll win if the horse you bet on finishes first in each race you pick.
  • Win/Place/Show: Pick a horse that finishes first, second, or third.
  • Win/Place: Pick a horse you think finishes first or second.
  • Win/Show: Pick a horse you think finishes first or third.
  • Place/Show: Pick a horse you think finishes in second or third.
  • Daily Double: Pick which horses you think finish in first in two different races.
  • Super High-Five: Pick two horses you think to finish in the top five in exact order.

“Parlay-Like” Bets

  • Accumulator: Pick four horses on a single betting slip. All four must win for a payout. These are similar to parlays in sports betting.

Horse Racing Online Betting Sites Odds

Horse racing betting odds are pretty similar to sports betting odds, only they’re initially displayed as fractional odds.

For example, you could see a horse’s odds for a “Win” bet of 9/5. In American odds, this converts to +180.

With fractional odds, the number on the left is the potential profit, whereas the number on the right is how much you’d wager.

So, looking at 9/5 odds, you’d have to wager $50 to win $90 or $100 to win $180, hence the +180 odds.

As you venture deeper into horse racing betting, you may hear “morning odds.” These are odds that the bookmaker believes could be a good starting point based on trends but can change leading up to the race.

They’re usually available in the morning on the day of the race, so be sure to pounce on them if something is appealing because, again, they can change rapidly.

Returning to the profit and wager, remember that horse racing betting is pari-mutuel betting. So, if you wager $100, you won’t necessarily get $180 if you win. Instead, you wager, the money is pooled, and if you win, you’ll receive a dividend after the vig is taken out.

Types of Online Horse Racing

While we’ve categorized everything so far as “horse racing,” there are subsets. Like “rock music,” there are subgenres within it; the same goes for horse racing. We’ll describe each of them below.

  • Thoroughbred Horse Racing: This is the most common type of horse racing betting. For example, if you’re a casual fan and only watch the Kentucky Derby, this is a form of thoroughbred horse racing.
  • Harness Horse Racing: Harness horse racing is a type of racing that consists of a horse tugging a two-wheeled cart, known as a sulky, along with it. These races are usually on an oval track and are longer distances than thoroughbred races. You’ll have all the same betting markets available here.
  • Jump Horse Racing: While more common in the United Kingdom, Jump Horse Racing involves racing while maneuvering jumps and other obstacles. In addition to the markets above, you can bet on if a horse makes it through without a stumble and a jockey falling off.

Horse Betting Sites Strategies, Trends, and Tips

While we can’t predict the future as to which horses will win, we can recommend some strategies and tips that you can use right away.

  • Research: This sounds obvious, probably; just researching not only the horses and their past results but also the jockeys and trainers will give you some insight into trends that might be relevant.
  • Monitor Weather: With horse racing being mostly outdoors and the field of play, in general, having various surfaces (firm, soft, or muddy), this can impact how different horses perform. Some may excel in conditions over others.
  • Watch Previous Races: Sometimes, researching the standings of past races doesn’t tell a whole story. You can look back at old taxes to see if any accidents happened or unexpected field conditions.
  • Manage Your Bankroll: Again, probably also obvious, but some “housekeeping,” if you will. Set a budget and stick to it. Portion it out over numerous races to diversify your betting portfolio and give your virtual wallet longevity.
  • Explore New Bet Types: There are many ways to wager on horse racing betting. Try a few of them and see if you notice any trends in where you excel. If you spot something, focus your efforts on that.

Major Horse Betting Sites Racing Events

Like the Super Bowl with the NFL or World Series with MLB, there are essential and notable races that happen throughout the year in horse racing. We’ll look at five of them below.

  • Kentucky Derby: Known as the “Most Exciting Two Minutes In Sports,” the Kentucky Derby is held on the first Saturday in May in Louisville, Kentucky, at Churchill Downs. Not only is it one of the races considered for the Triple Crown, but it’s the first in the series. This is a thoroughbred track on dirt that’s just over a mile long.
  • Belmont Stakes: The final leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes occur in Elmont, New York, at Belmont Park. It’s also held on the first Saturday of a month, but this time, in June. This race stretches 1.5 miles and welcomes three-year-old thoroughbreds.
  • Preakness Stakes: The second race in the Triple Crown, the Preakness Stakes also happens in May, but on the third Saturday. It’s held in Baltimore, Maryland, at Pimlico Race Course. This is the shortest race in the Triple Crown at 1 3/16 miles. It fits 14 horses.
  • Breeders Cup: Unlike the other three mentioned above, the Breeders Cup doesn’t have a dedicated race course because it takes place in November and is a two-day event. Here, you’ll find multiple races across different divisions.
  • Dubai World Cup: If you’re involved in horse racing, you’ll want to participate in the Dubai World Cup. The purse is about $12 million, and the horses will run on a 1.25-mile track. It’s held on the last Saturday in March.

Other Types of Races at Horse Betting Sites

In addition to the more “standard” options above, we’ll go over four other types of racing you might find at your favorite horse racing betting sites.

  • Greyhound Racing: While we covered horse racing here, many platforms will offer greyhound racing, which involves the greyhound dog on an oval track. You’ll have most of the same betting markets available here as well.
  • Arabian Horse Racing: This is a standard horse race; only it involves Arabian horses specifically.
  • Mixed Breed Racing: These races include thoroughbreds, quarter horses, Arabian horses, and others.
  • Virtual Horse Racing: This is a computer-simulated event that can offer on-the-spot results instead of waiting until a specific time for a race to start.

Horse Betting Sites FAQs

What is Pari-Mutuel Horse Racing Betting?

Pari-mutuel betting is a form of betting where wagers are collected into a pot and distributed amongst the winners who bet on the successful wager.

Is Horse Racing Betting Legal?

Yes. Horse racing is legal in well over half of the United States. The only states where it’s completely outlawed are Alaska, Georgia, Hawaii, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Utah.

What’s the Best Legal Horse Racing Betting Site?

According to our research, TVG and TwinSpires are the best sites to play at. Both have excellent mobile apps, betting markets, and live streams and offer enticing welcome bonuses to new players.

How Old Do I Need to Be to Participate in Horse Racing Betting?

In most states, you must be 18 to bet on horse racing.

What Deposit Methods Can I Use For Horse Racing Betting?

You can use various deposit methods for horse racing betting, including PayPal, online banking, debit cards, credit cards, wire transfers, and more.

Can I Watch Horse Races Live On The Best Horse Racing Betting Sites?

Many online horse racing betting sites will offer live streaming of horse races, including TVG and TwinSpires. However, you should always check the site you want to play at to be sure.

Where can I bet on horse racing online?

There are many online horse racing betting platforms on the market, but we recommend FanDuel, DraftKings, Caesars, TVG, TwinSpires, and BetMGM.

Is horse racing available on DraftKings?

Yes. Horse racing betting is available at DraftKings with DK Horse.

Is horse racing available on BetMGM?

Yes, horse racing betting is available at BetMGM.