|Monday 12th September 2022
Are International Horse Racing Sites Considered Non-GamStop Alternatives?
Thanks to constant weather conditions that make attending horse races problematic, a lot of UK horseplayers will take to the internet for their horse race wagering activities. Fortunately, there are quite a few quality UK gambling sites that accept wagers on horse races from all over the world. That includes betting sites that are very specific to horse racing and full-service UK gambling sites that offer access to horse race betting platforms.
The days are long gone when UK horse players would focus solely on horse racing from Europe. Because of the internet, the international horse racing community no longer has boundaries. Most viable horse race betting sites are now offering horse race wagering from major horse racing venues located all over the world. That includes Asia (Japan, Korea, and Hong Kong), the U.S., South America, and parts of the Middle East. That's not to exclude European horse racing from Italy, France, Ireland, Germany, and of course the UK.
GamStop Self-exclusion and Horse Racing in the UK
In the UK, there are two types of online gambling operators that are providing horse race wagering options. As was mentioned above, there are sites that are very specific to horse racing as well as UK online gambling sites that offer sports betting, casino gambling, and horse race betting (all-in-one).
In order to accept horse race wagers in the UK, operators are required to be licensed through the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). If they are licensed, they are further required to subscribe to the GamStop Self-exclusion scheme.
GamStop is a responsible gambling resource that allows UK online gamblers to have themselves blocked from accessing online gambling sites operating in the UK. Yes, that would include sites that accept horse race wagers. Gamblers can join the GamStop database by voluntarily registering to become part of the program. Once they are registered, they are blocked from using all licensed UK online gambling sites with one caveat. The program is only applicable to UK gambling sites that are licensed and have subscribed to GamStop.
The program offers ZERO flexibility in terms of allowing registered gamblers to change their minds. Once their registration form has been accepted and approved, the GamStop gambler will be blocked until their self-prescribe self-exclusion period expires.
Should a GamStop horseplayer decide they want to bet horse races again prior to their self-exclusion ending, they would have to seek out non-GamStop alternatives. Are there alternatives for a British horseplayer? Yes, there are, in fact, several very good alternatives. Many of these alternatives offer the same betting options as UK-licensed horse racing operators. That does include participation in all of the best British horse race betting tournaments.
The best ways to bet horse while avoiding GamStop scrutiny are:
- Using offshore international horse race betting sites
- Using UK sports betting sites not on GamStop
- Forgoing internet gambling in favour of enjoying an actual "day at the races"
- Using horse race betting sites that accept Bitcoin and honour crypto anonymity
The first item on this list warrants a little extra consideration. If an international horse race betting platform is licensed and regulated somewhere other than the UK, it is a viable non-GamStop option. However, that would only matter if the applicable site was willing to accept horseplayers from the UK.
Should You Use an International Horse Race Betting Site?
Truthfully, there are international horse race betting sites on both sides of the fence. Horse racing betting sites in the U.S. are not permitted by law to accept horseplayers from other countries. The same is true of sites in South America.
On the other side of the fence, there are horse race betting sites operating out of other European jurisdictions that do welcome UK horseplayers. The same is true of some sites in Asia. While these sites should be considered viable non-GamStop alternatives, there are potential issues.
First, some of these international horse race betting sites will willingly accept UK horseplayers. However, they do so in spite of the fact their jurisdictional laws prevent foreigners from electronically accessing their websites. This issue is easily cleared in a UK horseplayer who is willing to subscribe to and use a VPN. A good VPN will hide the origin of the UK horseplayer's IP address.
Second, the UK government prohibits UK online gamblers from using credit cards to fund offshore gambling accounts. There are also a number of other countries that also support this practice. To get around this, UK horseplayers would need to select banking options like cryptocurrency (if available) or international eWallet options.
Finally, international horse race betting sites offer foreigners very little protection should wagering disputes arise. Without protection from a viable regulatory body, UK horseplayers would need to be willing to accept a little higher level of risk.
If UK horseplayers can deal with these three potential issues, the fact is there are some excellent international horse race betting sites that welcome UK horseplayers. They do this because they like the action UK horseplayers bring to the table. After all, horseplayers in the UK have a reputation for being the most astute online gamblers in the world with the biggest bankroll.