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Horse racing is a horseback riding, equestrian performance sport in which riders compete against one another by racing their horses over a set distance. It is one of the most ancient sports and played to identify one of the horses is the fastest. There are various different variations of horse racing. Countries have come up with their own variations of this sport including races restricted to specific breeds, running over obstacles, racing on different surfaces, etc.
According to one of the oldest archaeological records, horse racing occurred in ancient Greece, Syria, Babylon and Egypt. Mounted horse racing and chariot racing have been popular sports for quite a long time. Historically, these races and games were a source of honing their skills for the equestrians. These sports entertained the crowds and refined the horsemanship that was needed for battle. It was through these sports that efficient development of particular breeds and gear for sports evolved and their popularity resulted in conservation of the ancient equestrian skills.
There are various different types of horse racing among which Flat racing is the most common one. The tracks are usually oval in shape and generally level. However, in Ireland and Great Britain, there is a greater variation of the tracks in which the tracks are in shape of a figure of eight with severe gradients and cambers. These races are usually run over a distance ranging from 400 meters to 2.5 miles.
Another common variation of horse racing is the jump racing which includes running over obstacles of different types and sizes. According to the type and size of obstacles, the jump racing can be further divided into two categories including steeplechasing and hurdling. Usually, the horses progress towards larger obstacles and longer distances as they become older.
Endurance racing is another form of horse racing in which there are various variations of distance and time. These races are typically longer and may even last for multiple days in some cases. There are five subcategories of endurance racing namely Pleasure rides which range up to 10-12 miles, non-competitive trail rides which range up to 21-27 miles, competitive trail rides which range up to 20-45 miles, progressive trail rides which range up to 20-60 miles and the endurance rides which range up to 40-100 miles in a day and over 250 miles in multiple days.