Baby race: A contest for 2-year-olds.
Backside: Stable area, dormitories and often times a track kitchen, chapel and recreation area for stable employees.
Backstretch: Straight portion of track's far side between turns.
Bandages: Binding used on horse's legs that are three to six inches wide and made of a variety of materials. In a race, they are used for support or protection against injury.
Bar shoe: A horseshoe closed at the back to help support the frog and heel of the hoof; often worn by horses with quarter cracks or bruised feet.
Bat: Jockey's whip.
Bay: Horse color that varies from a yellow-tan to bright auburn. The mane, tail and lower portion of legs are always black except where white markings are present.
Bearing in (or out): Deviating from a straight course. May be due to weariness, infirmity, inexperience or rider overusing whip or reins to make a horse alter course.
Beyer number: Handicapping tool, popularized by author Andrew Beyer, assigning a numerical value (speed figure) to each race run by a horse based on final time and track condition. It enables different horses running at different tracks to be objectively compared.
Bit: A stainless steel, rubber or aluminum bar, attached to the bridle, which fits in the horse's mouth and is one way by which a jockey exerts guidance and control. Most common is the D-bit, named because rings extending from bar are shaped like "D."
Black: Horse color that's black, including the muzzle, flanks, mane, tail and legs unless white markings are present.
Blaze: A generic term describing a large, white vertical marking on a horse's face.
Bleeder: Horse that bleeds from the lungs when small capillaries surrounding organ's air sacs rupture; medical term is "exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage."
Blood may be seen coming out of the horse's nostrils although typically discovered by a fiber optic endoscopic examination after exercise. Hot, humid weather and cold are known to exacerbate the problem.
Blinkers: A cup-shaped device limiting horse's vision to prevent the animal from swerving from objects or other thoroughbreds on either side; a variety of sizes and shapes allows as little or as much vision as the trainer feels is necessary.
Blister: Counter-irritant causing acute inflammation used to increase blood supply, blood flow and promote healing in the leg.
Blow-out: Short, timed workout, usually a day or two before a race, designed to sharpen a horse's speed, that's usually three-eighths or one-half mile.
Bobble: A bad step away from starting gate, usually caused by the track surface breaking away under a horse's hooves, causing it to duck its head or nearly go to the knees.
Bolt: Sudden veering from a straight course, usually to outside rail.
Bomber: Winning horse sent off at extremely high odds.
Bottom: Stamina in a horse; subsurface of a racing strip.
Bounce: Poor race run following a career-best or near-best performance.
Bowed tendon: Type of tendonitis that's the most common injury to a tendon; a strain or "bowed" tendon, so named because of the appearance of a bow shape due to swelling.
Box: Wagering term denoting a combination bet whereby all possible numeric combinations are covered.
Boxed in: To be trapped between, behind or inside of other horses.
Break: To depart starting gate.
Breakage: Pari-mutuel payoffs rounded to a nickel or dime; pennies that are left over.
Break maiden: Horse or rider winning first race of career.
Breather: Easing off on a runner for a short distance to conserve or renew strength.
Breeder: Owner of the dam at time of foaling unless the dam was under a lease or foal-sharing arrangement.
Breeders' Cup: Racing's year-end championship known as the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships; eight races with purses worth a total of $14 million.
Breeze or breezing: Working a horse at a moderate speed; less effort than handily.
Bridle: Piece of equipment, usually made of leather or nylon, that fits on a horse's head and is where other equipment, such as a bit and reins, are attached.
Broodmare: Filly or mare that has been bred and used to produce foals.
Brush: Two runners who slightly touch each other; an injury that occurs when one hoof strikes the inside of the opposite limb.
Bucked shins: Inflammation of the covering on the cannon bone, primarily thee front legs, which young horses are particularly susceptible.
Bug boy: Apprentice rider.
Bullet (work): Best workout time for a particular distance on a given day at a track.
Bute: Short for phenylbutazone, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication that's legal in many racing jurisdictions and often known by the trade names Butazolidin and Butazone.
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Here are some other handy links to the major races that you may fine valuable through out the year. We also have updated event pages for all major races. Check out our home page on the left navigation bar under the handicapping resources section during all major horse racing events. (Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes and Breeders Cup)
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