A horse race is a competition between horses and their jockeys on a set course that can be anything from a dirt track to a turf covered course. In order to win a horse race, a jockey must ride his or her horse to the finish line first and then leap over any poles present on the course (if there are any). The winning horses receive prize money from the host of the event. The amount of prize money is known as the purse.
There is a lot that goes into preparing for and running a horse race. The horses must be exercised and given a variety of medications. These include drugs like Lasix, which is used to prevent pulmonary bleeding from hard running in the horses. The stewards of the race monitor all the horses to ensure that they are being treated safely and not being abused.
Despite all of this, the fact remains that many horses are injured or killed each year while participating in horse races. One of the most common reasons for this is the horse racing industry’s insistence on putting speed over safety. Horses are forced to run at a very high pace and this can lead to them becoming exhausted very quickly, which in turn causes them to suffer from a number of health problems.
In an attempt to reduce the amount of injuries that occur in the sport, a number of new technological advances have been implemented. Some of these advancements, such as thermal imaging cameras and MRI scanners, are intended to help monitor the horses’ health before, during and after the race. Others, such as 3D printing, are being used to create casts and splints for injured or ill horses.
A great deal of controversy surrounds horse racing, primarily because of the way in which it is conducted. Those in favor of the sport argue that it is an exciting and entertaining spectacle, while those against it claim that the horses are being drugged and whipped to the point of collapse and then slaughtered for their efforts. The activists who run the organization Horseracing Wrongs claim that up to ten thousand American thoroughbreds are killed annually because of racing, and they call for all races to be banned.
A typical horse race will have a field of eleven competitors. They will be led by a horse named the leader, who will break cleanly from the gate and take an early lead around the clubhouse turn. The horses will then begin to stretch out on the backstretch. They will whittle their way down the home straight, past the clubhouse and the stretch, where the leading contenders will be separated by a nose or two. The horse that wins the race will be declared the winner and receive a large sum of money, which is called the prize purse. The rest of the runners will receive varying amounts of money based on their finishing position.