15 Words that mean something different to Racing fans

Features | 21st January 2020

The racing universe is a world littered with jargon, colloquialisms and terms that can be immensely confusing to anyone not entirely au fait with the sport.

Here are 15 words that mean something different to racing people.

Dam

Normal language: A barrier constructed to hold back water and raise its level, forming a reservoir used to generate electricity or as a water supply.

Racing language: A horse’s mother.

Sire

Normal language: A respectful form of address for someone of high social status, especially a king.

Racing language: Father of a horse.

Chaser

Normal language: A person or thing that pursues someone or something.

Racing language: A horse taking part in steeplechase races (over fences).

Groom

Normal language: A man who will soon be or has recently been married.

To racing people: A person employed to take care of horses.

Tack

Normal language: A small, sharp broad-headed nail.

Racing language: Essentially, what horses wear. Saddles and bridles are tack.

Chestnut

Normal language: A glossy hard brown edible nut which develops within a bristly case and which may be roasted and eaten.

Racing language: Horse colour varying from light, washy yellow to dark liver orange, and in between are red, gold and liver shades.

Bumper

Normal language: A horizontal bar fixed across the front or back of a motor vehicle to reduce damage in a collision.

Racing language: A Flat race run under Jump Rules, used to educate young prospective jumps horses before they tackle hurdles or fences. Officially called National Hunt Flat Race.

Draw

Normal language: Produce (a picture or diagram) by making lines and marks on paper with a pencil, pen.

Racing language: A horse’s starting position in the stalls allotted in races on the Flat.

Nursery

Normal language: A place where young children and babies are cared for while their parents are somewhere else.

Racing language: A handicap on the Flat for two-year-old horses.

Banker

Normal language: A person who manages or owns a bank or group of banks.

Racing language: The horse expected to win – usually a short priced favourite. The strongest selection in a multiple selection.

Green

Normal language: Of the colour between blue and yellow in the spectrum; coloured like grass or emeralds.

Racing language: Used to describe an immature or inexperienced horse.

Drifter

Normal language: A person who is continually moving from place to place, without any fixed home or job.

Racing language: A horse whose odds get bigger just before the race due to a lack of support in the market. Often referred to as being “on the drift”.

Hand

Normal language: The end part of a person’s arm beyond the wrist, including the palm, fingers, and thumb.

Racing language: A unit of measurement of a horse – a hand is four inches, and horses are measured from the ground to the withers (the part of the horse where the back and neck meet.)

Nap

Normal language: A short sleep, especially during the day.

Racing language: The best bet of the day from a particular tipster.

Yard

Normal language: A unit of linear measure equal to 3 feet (0.9144 metre).

Racing language: A trainer’s premises from where racehorses are trained.