Glossary: Horse Racing Terminology B-C

B baby race A race for two-year-olds. back at the knee A leg that looks like it has a backward arc with its center at the knee when viewed from the side. backside Stable area, dormitories and often times a track kitchen, chapel and recreation area for stable employees. Also known as "backstretch," for its proximity to the stable area. backstretch 1) Straight portion of the far side of the racing surface between the turns. 2) See backside. bad doer A horse with a poor appetite, a condition that may be due to nervousness or other causes. bandage Bandages used on horse's legs are three to six inches wide and are made of a variety of materials. In a race, they are used for support or protection against injury. "Rundown bandages" are used during a race and usually have a pad under the fetlock to avoid injury due to abrasion when the fetlocks sink toward the ground during weight-bearing. A horse may also wear "standing bandages," thick cotton wraps used during shipping and while in the stall to prevent swelling and/or injury. barren Used to describe a filly or mare that was bred and did not conceive during the last breeding season. barrier A starting device used in steeplechasing consisting of an elastic band stretched across the racetrack which springs back when released. Also known as a "tape." bar shoe A horseshoe closed at the back to help support the frog and heel of the hoof. It is often worn by horses with quarter cracks or bruised feet. basilar (fracture) See sesamoids. bat A jockey's whip. battery A term for an illegal electrical device used by a jockey to stimulate a horse during a race. Also known as a "machine" or "joint." bay A horse color that varies from a yellow-tan to a bright auburn. The mane, tail and lower portion of the 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 the rider overusing the whip or reins to make a horse alter its course. bell Signal sounded when the starter opens the gates or, at some tracks, to mark the close of betting. Beyer number A 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. This enables different horses running at different racetracks to be objectively compared. Big Red Refers to either of two famous chestnut-colored horses: Man o' War or Secretariat. Bill Daly (on the) Taking a horse to the front at the start and remaining there to the finish. Term stems from "Father Bill" Daly, famous old-time horseman, who developed many great jockeys. bit A stainless steel, rubber or aluminum bar, attached to the bridle, which fits in the horse's mouth and is one of the means by which a jockey exerts guidance and control. The most common racing bit is the D-bit, named because the rings extending from the bar are shaped like the letter "D." Most racing bits are "snaffled," (snaffle bit) which means the metal bar is made up of two pieces, connected in the middle, which leaves it free to swivel. Other bits may be used to correct specific problems, such as bearing in or out. black A horse color which is black, including the muzzle, flanks, mane, tail and legs unless white markings are present. black type Boldface type, used in sales catalogues, to distinguish horses that have won or placed in a stakes race. Many sales catalogues have eliminated the use of black type for stakes below a certain monetary level-$15,000 in 1985, $20,000 from 1986-1989 and $25,000 beginning in 1990. If a horse's name appears in boldface type in a catalogue and in all capital letters, it has won at least one black-type event. If it appears in boldface type and capital and lower case letters, it was second or third in at least one black-type event. Black type was awarded to fourth-place finishers in races before Jan. 1, 1990. blaze A generic term describing a large, white vertical marking on a horse's face. The Jockey Club doesn't use blaze, preferring more descriptive words. See snip; star; stripe. bleeder A horse that bleeds from the lungs when small capillaries that surround the lungs' air sacs (alveoli) rupture. The medical term is "exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage" (EIPH). Blood may be seen coming out of the horse's nostrils, known as "epistaxis," although it is typically discovered by a fiber optic endoscopic examination after exercise. Hot, humid weather and cold are known to exacerbate the problem. The most common preventative treatment currently available is the use of the diuretic furosemide (Lasix). Less than one bleeder in 20 shows signs of epistaxis. See "Exercise-Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage" subsection of "Respiratory System" in veterinary supplement for a more detailed explanation. blind switch A circumstance in which a rider's actions cause him/her to be impeded during a race. blinkers A cup-shaped device to limit a horse's vision to prevent him from swerving from objects or other horses on either side of it. Blinker cups come in a variety of sizes and shapes to allow 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 to promote healing in the leg. bloodstock agent A person who advises and/or represents a buyer or seller of Thoroughbreds at a public auction or a private sale. A bloodstock agent usually works on commission, often five percent of the purchase price, and can also prepare a horse for sale. blood-typing A way to verify a horse's parentage. Blood-typing is usually completed within the first year of a horse's life and is necessary before registration papers will be issued by The Jockey Club. blow-out A short, timed workout, usually a day or two before a race, designed to sharpen a horse's speed. Usually three-eighths or one-half of a mile in distance. board Short for "tote board," on which odds, betting pools and other information are displayed. bobble A bad step away from the starting gate, usually caused by the track surface breaking away from under a horse's hooves, causing it to duck its head or nearly go to his knees. bog spavin A filling with excess synovial fluid of the largest joint of the hock called the "tarsocrual joint." bolt Sudden veering from a straight course, usually to the outside rail. bomb(er) A winning horse sent off at extremely high odds. bone graft Utilizing bone taken from one part of the body to promote formation of bone in another region. bone spavin Arthritis of the hock joint. A bone spavin that has progressed to the point that the arthritis can be seen externally is called a "Jack spavin." book 1) The group of mares being bred to a stallion in a given year. If a stallion attracts the maximum number of mares allowed by the farm manager, he has a full book. 2) A term used to describe a jockey's riding commitments with his agent: An agent handles a jockey's book. bottom 1) Stamina in a horse. 2) Subsurface of a racing strip. bottom line A Thoroughbred's breeding on the female side. The lower half of an extended pedigree diagram. bounce A poor race run directly following a career-best or near-best performance. bowed tendon A type of tendinitis. The most common injury to the tendon is a strain or "bowed" tendon, so named because of the appearance of a bow shape due to swelling. The most common site of injury is in the superficial flexor tendon between the knee and the ankle. Despite aggressive treatment with anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy and rest, horses commonly reinjure the tendon when they go back into competition. Two surgeries are felt to aid horses to come back to racing: tendon splitting at the lesion site to release accumulated fluid and blood, and superior check ligament desmotomy. The latter surgery is designed to reduce forces on the tendon when the horse returns to training and racing. box A 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. brace (or bracer) Rubdown liniment used on a horse after a race or workout. break (a horse) 1) To train a young horse to wear a bridle and saddle, carry a rider and respond to a rider's commands. Almost always done when the horse is a yearling. 2) To leave from the starting gate. breakage In parimutuel payoffs, which are rounded down to a nickel or dime, the pennies that are left over. Breakage may be used for any of a number of purposes, depending upon a state's rules of racing. breakdown When a horse suffers a potentially career-ending injury, usually to the leg: The horse suffered a breakdown. The horse broke down. break maiden Horse or rider winning the first race of its career. Also known as "earning a diploma." breather Easing off on a horse for a short distance in a race to permit it to conserve or renew its strength. bred 1) A horse is considered to have been bred in the state or country of its birth: Secretariat was a Virginia-bred. 2) The past tense of "breed." breeder Owner of the dam at time of foaling unless the dam was under a lease or foal-sharing arrangement at the time of foaling. In that case, the person(s) specified by the terms of the agreement is (are) the breeder(s) of the foal. Breeders' Cup Thoroughbred racing's year-end championship. Known as "Breeders' Cup Day," it consists of seven races conducted on one day at a different racetrack each year with purses and awards totalling $12 million. First run in 1984, the races are the:
$1 million Breeders' Cup Sprint, for three-year-olds and older at six furlongs;
$1 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, for two-year-old fillies at 1 and 1/16 miles;
$2 million Breeders' Cup Distaff, for three-year-olds and older, fillies and mares, at 1 and 1/8 miles;
$1 million Breeders' Cup Mile, for three-year-olds and older at one mile on the turf;
$1 million Breeders' Cup Juvenile, for two-year-olds at 1 and 1/16 miles;
$2 million Breeders' Cup Turf, for three-year-olds and older at 1 and 1/2 miles on the turf;
$4 million Breeders' Cup Classic, for three-year-olds and older at 1 and 1/4 miles.
breeding fund A state fund set up to provide bonuses for state-breds. breeze (breezing) Working a horse at a moderate speed, less effort than handily. bridge jumper A person who wagers large amounts of money, usually on short-priced horses to show, hoping to realize a small, but certain profit. The term comes from the structure these bettors may seek if they lose. bridle A piece of equipment, usually made of leather or nylon, which fits on a horse's head and is where other equipment, such as a bit and the reins, are attached. broken wind Abnormality of the upper or lower respiratory tract causing loss of normal air exchange, generally resulting in reduced performance. broodmare A filly or mare that has been bred and is used to produce foals. brush 1) During a race, two horses who slightly touch each other. 2) Injury that occurs when one hoof strikes the inside of the opposite limb. bucked shins Inflammation of the covering of the bone (periosteum) of the front surface of the cannon bone to which young horses are particularly susceptible. This is primarily a condition of the front legs. bug See apprentice; apprentice allowance. bug boy An apprentice rider. bulbs (of the heel) The two areas on either side of the back of the foot, similar to the heel of the hand. bullet (work) The best workout time for a particular distance on a given day at a track. From the printer's "bullet" that precedes the time of the workout in listings. Also known as a "black-letter" work in some parts of the country. bullring A small racetrack, usually less than one mile. burn(ed) See run down. Commonly used in the term: burned heels. bursa A sac containing synovial fluid (a natural lubricant). The purpose is to pad or cushion and thus facilitate motion between soft tissue and bone. Most commonly occurring where tendons pass over bones. bursitis Inflammation in a bursa that results in swelling due to accumulation of synovial fluid. Capped elbow is inflammation of the bursa over the point of elbow (olecranon process of the ulna). "Capped hock" is inflammation of the bursa over the point of the hock (tuber calcis). bute Short for phenylbutazone, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication that is legal in many racing jurisdictions. Often known by the trade names Butazolidin and Butazone. buy-back A horse put through a public auction that did not reach a minimum (reserve) price set by the consignor and so was retained. The consignor must pay a fee to the auction company based on a percentage of the reserve, to cover the auction company's marketing, advertising and other costs. B.V.M.S. Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine & Surgery. B.V.Sc. Bachelor of Veterinary Science.

C calk A projection on the heels of a horseshoe, similar to a cleat, on the rear shoes of a horse to prevent slipping, especially on a wet track. Also known as a "sticker." Sometimes incorrectly spelled "caulk." call Running position of horses in a race at various points. cannon bone The third metacarpal (front leg) or metatarsal (rear leg), also referred to as the shin bone. The largest bone between the knee and ankle joints. capillary refill time The amount of time it takes for blood to return to capillaries after it has been forced out, normally two seconds; usually assessed pressing the thumb against the horse's gums. When the pressure is removed the gum looks white, but the normal pink color returns as blood flows into the capillaries. capped elbow Inflammation of the bursa over the point of the elbow. Also known as a "shoe boil." See bursitis. capped hock Inflammation of the bursa over the point of the hock. See bursitis. carpus A joint in the horse's front leg, more commonly referred to as the knee. cast A horse, positioned on its side or back, and wedged against a wall, such that it cannot get up. caudal Toward the tail. Center of Distribution A formula derived from the Dosage profile and a similar attempt to quantify speed and stamina. chalk Wagering favorite in a race. Dates from the days when on-track bookmakers would write current odds on a chalkboard. chalk player Bettor who wagers on favorites. champion See Eclipse Award. chart A statistical "picture" of a race (from which past performances are compiled), that shows the position and margin of each horse at designated points of call (depending on the distance of the race), as well as the horses' age, weight carried, owner, trainer, jockey, and the race's purse, conditions, payoff prices, odds, time and other data. check(ed) When a jockey slows a horse due to other horses impeding its progress. chef-de-race A list of superior sires used in the Dosage formula. Pronounced "chef de RAH." chestnut 1) A horse color which may vary from a red-yellow to golden-yellow. The mane, tail and legs are usually variations of coat color, except where white markings are present. 2) Horny, irregular growths found on the inside of the legs. On the forelegs, they are just above the knees. On the hind legs, they are just below the hocks. No two horses have been found to have the same chestnuts and so they may be used for identification. Also called "night eyes." chiropractic The use of bone alignment to treat specific or general health problems. choking down See dorsal displacement of the soft palate. chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Commonly known as "COPD," a hyperallergenic response of the respiratory system that involves damage to the lung tissue, similar in many ways to human asthma. Affected horses may cough, develop a nasal discharge and have a reduced exercise tolerance. Respiratory rate is increased and lung elasticity is diminished. chronic osselet Permanent build-up of synovial fluid in a joint, characterized by inflammation and thickening of the joint capsule over the damaged area. Usually attended by changes in the bone and cartilage. See arthritis. chute Extension of backstretch or homestretch to permit a straight running start in a race as opposed to starting on or near a turn. claiming Process by which a licensed person may purchase a horse entered in a designated race for a predetermined price. When a horse has been claimed, its new owner assumes title after the starting gate opens although the former owner is entitled to all purse money earned in that race. claiming box Box in which claims are deposited before the race. claiming race A race in which each horse entered is eligible to be purchased at a set price. Claims must be made before the race and only by licensed owners or their agents who have a horse registered to race at that meeting or who have received a claim certificate from the stewards. classic 1) A race of traditional importance. 2) Used to describe a distance A race at the American classic distance, which is currently 1 and 1/4 miles. The European classic distance is 1 and 1/2 miles. clerk of scales An official whose chief duty is to weigh the riders before and after a race to ensure proper weight is (was) carried. climbing When a horse lifts its front legs abnormally high as it gallops, causing it to run inefficiently. clocker One who times workouts and races. closed knees A condition when the cartilaginous growth plate above the knee (distal radial physis) has turned to bone. Indicates completion of long bone growth and is one sign of maturity. closer A horse that runs best in the latter part of the race, coming from off the pace. clubhouse turn Generally, the turn on a racing oval that is closest to the clubhouse facility; usually the first turn after the finish line. coffin bone The third phalanx (P3). The major bone that is within the confines of the hoof. Also called the "pedal [PEE-dal] bone." colic Refers to abdominal pain. See "Colic" subsection of "Digestive System" in veterinary supplement for a more detailed explanation. colors See silks. colors (horse) Colors accepted by The Jockey Club are bay, black, chestnut, dark bay or brown, gray, roan and white. See individual entries for definitions. colt An ungelded (entire) male horse four-years-old or younger. commingle Combining mutuel pools from off-track sites with the host track. comminuted (fracture) A fracture with more than two fragments. company Class of horses in a race He last ran in stakes company. Comparable Index (CI) Indicates the average earnings of progeny produced from mares bred to one sire when these same mares are bred to other sires. A CI of 1.00 is considered average, 2.00 is twice the average, 0.50 half the average, etc. compound (fracture) A fracture where the damaged bone breaks through the skin. Also known as an "open" fracture. condition book(s) A series of booklets issued by a racing secretary which set forth conditions of races to be run at a particular racetrack. conditioner 1) A trainer. 2) A workout or race to enable a horse to attain fitness. conditions The requirements of a particular race. This may include age, sex, money or races won, weight carried and the distance of the race. condylar (fracture) A fracture in the lower knobby end (condyle) of the lower (distal) end of a long bone such as the cannon bone or humerus (upper front limb). conformation The physical makeup of and bodily proportions of a horse how it is put together. congenital Present at birth. connections Persons identified with a horse, such as owner, trainer, rider and stable employees. consolation double A payoff to holders of daily double tickets combining the winning horse in the first race of the double with a scratched horse in the second. cooling out Restoring a horse to normal temperature, usually by walking, after it has become overheated during exercise. All horses that are exercised are cooled out. corn An irritation on the sole of the foot, toward the heel. As in a human, the result of pressure from the shoe. coronary band Where the hair meets the hoof. Also called the "coronet." coronet See coronary band. corticosteroids Hormones that are either naturally produced by the adrenal gland or man-made. They function as anti-inflammatory hormones or hormones that regulate the chemical stability (homeostasis) of the body. One common misconception is that a horse which has received corticosteroids experiences an increase in its natural abilities and therefore has an unfair advantage. At the present time, there is no scientific evidence to support such a perception. cough To expel air from the lungs in a spasmodic manner. Can be a result of inflammation or irritation to the upper airways (pharynx, larynx or trachea) or may involve the lower airways of the lungs (deep cough). coupled (entry) Two or more horses running as an entry in a single betting unit. cover A single breeding of a stallion to a mare He covered 70 mares. cow hocks Abnormal conformation in which the points of the hocks turn in. cracked hoof A vertical split of the hoof wall. Cracks may extend upwards from the bearing surface of the wall or downwards from the coronary band, as the result of a defect in the band. Varying in degrees of severity, cracks can result from injuries or concussion. Hooves that are dry and/or thin (shelly) or improperly shod are susceptible to cracking upon concussion. Corrective trimming and shoeing may remedy mild cracks but in severe cases, when the crack extends inward to the sensitive laminae, more extensive treatment is required, such as using screws and wires to stabilize the sides of the crack. cranial Toward the head. creep feeder A feed device designed to allow a foal to eat but keep its dam out. Otherwise, the mare will eat the foal's food. cribber A horse that clings to objects with its teeth and sucks air into its stomach. Also known as a "wind sucker." crop 1) The number of foals by a sire in a given year. 2) A group of horses born in the same year An average crop of three-year-olds. 3) A jockey's whip. croup Along the horse's topline, the area between the back and the tail. A straight, level croup provides maximum outreach of the Thoroughbred's hindquarters as it gallops, producing a longer stride. cryptorchid A "unilateral cryptorchid" is a male horse of any age that has one testicle undescended. A "bilateral cryptorchid" is a male horse of any age that has both testicles undescended. The Jockey Club defines "cryptorchid" as a male horse of any age that has both testicles undescended. cup 1) Refers to the irregular occlusal surface of the tooth (the surfaces that meet when a horse closes its mouth) and is used as a visual method of determining age in a horse. 2) Trophy awarded to winning horse owners, usually in a stakes race. cuppy (track) A dry and loose racing surface that breaks away under a horse's hooves. curb A thickening of the plantar ligament of the hock. cushion Top portion of a racetrack. cut down Horse suffering from injuries from being struck by the shoes of another horse. Or, due to a faulty stride, a horse may cut itself down.

Note: Information Provided by Thoroughbred Racing Communications, Inc.