Horse Racing Running Styles

Running Styles and Beyer Speed Figures 

Beyer Speed Figures

Beyer Speed Figures appear solely in the Daily Race Form.  Horse Racing Running Styles using the Beyer Speed Figures are one of the most powerful tools in handicapping. The Beyer scale runs from 0 (slowest) to nearly 125.

These figures measure how fast a horse can run, taking into account the condition of the surface was on a given day.  Beyer Figures take many factors into account, so they can be trusted in comparing one horse’s speed to another past performance.  

The Beyer Speed Figures are the first thing you should check out when trying to handicap a race. It will tell you how fast the horse has run in the past and on what surfaces. 

Horse Racing Running Styles Beyers Figures


Running Technique

Knowing horses running style can help in handicapping them in the current race.  There are a few different running styles in a horse racing.

Horses are known as “closers” that run the race in be back of the pack and then will make their way to the front and win the race.  There are “stalker” horses that will be close to the front of the pack and then run into first in the home stretch.  

The final one is the “front-runner” who runs the race at the front of the pack from the starting gate all the way to the finish line and will win the race.  Know how to identify the different kinds of horses and it will help you to handicap the race. 

What are the different types of Horse Running Styles



Types of Races 

So what are the different types of races? Here are various levels of competition in Thoroughbred racing, here are a few examples. 

  • Maiden Race: A race solely for horses that have not won a race. Once a horse has “broken its maiden” it must advance into one of the other categories.


  • Claiming Race: This is the most common of all races, stipulating a price (such as $25,000) for which any horse in the race can be purchased. Current owners put their horse up for sale, knowing that it can be purchased prior to running the race.


  • Allowance Race: This is one step above a claiming race with the exception of the horses are not for sale. The Allowance Races are generally is prepared to race at a higher level and compete in stakes races.


  • Stakes Race: The highest class level reserved for the best horses.  Owners usually pay an entry fee to run their horse in the race. Stakes Race offers the largest payout to owners.


To get more detail about the Types and Classes of Races Check out our article. 


CONTINUE READING: Post Positions – Saddle Cloths




  1. Jenn Webb

    Thank you for the great information that is what I was looking for in a blog post.

    1. Alex (Post author)

      Hi Jenn,

      I am glad you found this article informative. I enjoy sharing my knowledge with others because I love the sport of horse racing. Running Styles are important when you are handicapping a race along with Past Performances. Be sure to check out the Past Performance Post.


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