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Horse Race Betting Lexicon

A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G   |   H
I   |   J   |   K   |   L   |   M   |   N   |   O   |   P
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N

Neck

Unit of measurement about the length of a horse's neck.

Nose

Smallest advantage a horse can win by.

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O

Objection
Claim of foul lodged by rider, patrol judge, or other official after the running of a race. If lodged by an official, it is called an inquiry.

Odds
The sportsbook's or bookmaker's view of the chance of a competitor winning (adjusted to include a profit). The figure or fraction by which a bookmaker or totalisator offers to multiply a bettor's stake, which the bettor is entitled to receive (plus his or her own stake) if their selection wins.

Odds Against
A term to describe that the odds are greater than evens (e.g. 5 to 2), when the bookmaker's or totalisator's stake is greater than the bettor's stake. For example, a horse that is quoted at 4:1 would be odds against, because if it wins a race, the bookmaker or totalisator returns $4 for every dollar a bettor places on that horse, plus his or her original outlay.

Odds Compiler
See Oddsmaker.

Oddsmaker
A person who sets the betting odds. Note that sportsbooks or bookies don't set the odds. Most major sportsbooks use odds set by Las Vegas oddsmakers.

Odds-on
Odds of less than even money. This is a bet where you have to outlay more than you win. For example if a horse is two to one odds-on, you have to outlay two dollars to win one dollar and if the horse wins you collect a total of three dollars (the two dollars you bet and the one dollar you won).

Official
The sign displayed when result is confirmed. Also a racing official.

Off-Track Betting
Wagering at legalized betting outlets.

On the Board
Finishing among the first three.

On the Nose
Betting a horse to win only.

Outlay
The money a bettor wagers is called his or her outlay.

Out of the Money
A horse that finishes worse than third.

Outsider
A horse that is not expected to win. An outsider is usually quoted at the highest odds.

Overbroke
Where the book results in a loss for the bookmaker.

Overlay
A horse going off at higher odds than it appears to warrant, based on its past performances.

Overnight Race
A race in which entries close a specific number of hours before running (such as 48 hours), as opposed to a stakes race for which nominations close weeks and sometimes months in advance.

Over the Top
When a horse is considered to have reached its peak for that season.

Overweight
Surplus weight carried by a horse when the rider cannot make the assigned weight.

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