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RacingBetter News
Thursday 10th November 2022

The Rise of Virtual Horse Racing at Online Casinos

‍Nothing quite beats a day out at the races, especially when you back a few winners. There’s no doubt that horse racing is one of the nation’s favorite pastimes. From 2008 to 2019, there was an annual turnover of over £220 million in on-course bets in the United Kingdom. However, as a result of the global pandemic, annual turnover fell to a mere £11.58 million in 2020.

With live, in-person events no longer taking place, punters turned their attention to virtual sports games at online casinos. One of the most popular virtual sports to bet on is, of course, horse racing. While this virtual form may fall short in terms of the atmosphere and drama when compared to its real-life counterpart, it did fill a gap in the market. We replaced flesh and blood horses with digital nags.

Even though sports have returned to normal, the popularity and availability of virtual horse racing is increasing. We explore the games’ mechanics and why they’re on the up at online casinos.

Improving the Tech

The majority of the games you find available at online casinos are still video slots and classic table games. However, many independent slot sites that run on proprietary platforms are adding virtual sports games to their portfolio due to the increase in their popularity. There was a 30% increase in virtual sports betting across Europe, and a total of 4.8 million viewers tuned in to watch the virtual Grand National race in 2020.

While virtual horse races used to look very basic just a few years ago, technology has vastly improved. Now, many platforms offer immersive video graphics to add to the fun. This is another reason this form of betting continues to rise.

How to Bet on Virtual Horse Races

Betting on virtual horse races could not be easier, with countless events running all day, every day. However, it is important to remember that the results of virtual races are not scripted and instead are entirely random. RNGs (Random Number Generators) are used to generate each race's results randomly. Then, the results are converted into a visual representation that we can watch as a horse race.

Virtual horse races usually occur every couple of minutes and alternate between flat and jump meetings. In some cases, jump races can take slightly longer to finish. You will also find that the best platforms offer races based on real-life tracks.

Once you find the race you wish to place a bet on, you will be presented with the list of runners available for that specific race with all their individual odds. Each runner’s odds are not based on form or previous results, as neither of these is recorded. The betting options available are not vast when betting on virtual horse races. Punters are offered the following betting markets; to win market, forecast, and tricast.

The simplicity that both real-life and virtual horse racing share is what makes it so popular. Whether you're standing in the grandstand or enjoying the view from your own home, horse racing offers unmatched excitement.

Alternative Sports

Virtual horse racing sits as the most popular virtual sports game to bet on right now, but this does not mean it is the only one. As we previously mentioned, the popularity of virtual sports has grown exponentially in recent years for a number of reasons. Casinos and bookmakers have not only improved their virtual sports software but increased the number of virtual sports that you can bet on. This is thanks to platforms like Leap Gaming, which specialise in virtual sports betting.

Below is a list of popular virtual sports you can place bets on:

  • Greyhounds
  • Tennis
  • Football
  • Motorsport
  • Speedway
  • Cycling
  • American Football
  • Darts
  • Esports

Why have a flutter on the digital ponies?

Horse racing is a fantastically exciting sport to bet on, and it’s close to impossible to replicate the real thing. However, virtual horse racing and other virtual sports offer a fun alternative, especially if you are waiting for the glorious times of the year when the Cheltenham Festival or Ascot are in full swing.

To believe it yourself, you can check out the latest virtual sports and experience what they offer firsthand.