Horse Racing Nation: A Review of the Horse Racing Nation Website


Horse Racing Nation is a wiki-type website dedicated to everything related to thoroughbred horse racing. The website provides a convenient place for like-minded people to meet and discuss different aspects of the sport. A community of horse racing enthusiasts provides some of the content, and a full-time editorial team creates the rest, including maintaining social media sites. The parent company, Horse Racing Labs, LLC, also runs Super Screener, a website dedicated to handicapping, and Derby Wars, a fantasy horse racing league contest site that uses real money. The home office is located a mile from the Kentucky Derby; the home office and staff have quick access to events and personalities that frequent Churchill Downs and Keeneland.

Horse Racing Nation is a website dedicated to everything related to thoroughbred horse racing including races, owners, riders, trainers, and statistics.

Who writes all of the information found on the website?

There is a dedicated editorial team that provides all of the daily information, but the website thrives on the interaction provided by the community.

What is a wiki?

A wiki is a collaborative website where the users can provide any content and opinions. The structure of the website changes as information is added. Wikis are quick ways to create information and allow users to discuss topics among themselves.

Why should I trust the information on a wiki site?

Wikis are only as useful as the quality of the information provided. In specific instances, people may try to put false information on a wiki. However, it is up to the other members of the wiki to call out the misinformation and provide alternate opinions and information.

Will I learn how to pick the winning horse in a race by reading Horse Racing Nation?

Probably not, as picking the winning horse is one-part luck and one-part analysis. Topics you will need to research to pick a winning horse to include handicapping, speed figures, race distance, track and weather conditions, racing cycles, and the post position.

How much does it cost to use the data on Horse Racing Nation?

All data is free to use on the website.

How can I access information from Horse Racing Nation?

Their content can be found on their website and several social media sites including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Can I place bets on the website for different horse races?

No. Horse Racing Nation is just an information site. You cannot place bets on the site. However, they do run a fantasy horse racing league on the sister site Derby Wars.

Staff Members

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Most of the staff members of Horse Racing Nation are longtime horse racing enthusiasts with horse racing experience, which means the website staff has years of combined knowledge to share.

Mark Midland is the CEO and Co-Founder and has a 20-year history in horse racing marketing. He previously worked for Youbet.com, Churchill Downs, and Harrah’s.

Mike Shutty is the other Co-Founder and principal investor. He worked in marketing for over 30 years and learned about horse racing and handicapping by making many mistakes over the years.

Jonathan Lintner is the current Managing Editor and was a previous racing and sports reporter.

Candice Curtis – Email Marketing Manager

Brian Zipse – Senior Writer

Jarrod Horak – Handicapper

Christine Osser – Staff Writer

Matt Shifman – Assistant Editor

Others

Website Highlights

The website has simple navigation with a single column of information down the middle and a prominent menu bar across the top. The information is broken down into the most critical topics for thoroughbred racing:

  • Triple Crown – This section has all the winners and losers for the current year’s races. The drop-down menu includes Belmont information (field, news, odds, picks, history), Kentucky Oaks, and Triple Crown and the overall results of the races broken down into the fastest, slowest, and all-time records
  • BC (Breeders Cup) – This section presents a history of the Breeder’s Cup and a list of individual race winners for each division including classic, turf, juvenile, mile, sprint, distaff, and dirt mile.
  • Stakes Tracker – This tab highlights the Triple Crown Stakes for the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes, and Belmont Stakes. Further down, you will find information on Kentucky Oaks, Major Races around the world, and Breeder’s Cup. Finally, viewers can search all races from this tab. The list is comprehensive and is one of the signature features of the website. It attempts to analyze the current data and look into the future for what will happen and how races will shape-up.

This part of the website shows replays of races and also provides the most up-to-date race information. You can access their YouTube videos and Facebook channels from this tab. Viewers interested in writing for Horse Racing Nation will find a link here.

  • Expert Picks – As expected, this section has their best picks from different experts as well as a tip sheet for picking the best candidate or combination.
  • HRN Blogs – Since this is a wiki, access to some of the best blogs about thoroughbred horse racing can be found in the drop-down menu.

Horse racing wouldn’t be exciting without the horses. This section gets more into depth with the horses including the list of active horses, winners, contenders, all-time winners, and all-time females.

  • People – Information about jockeys, trainers, and owners can be found here as well as other essential industry organizations. The writers and community that make up the website is another stand-out feature of Horse Racing Nation. Horse racing enthusiasts from around the world provide their insight and experience, which allows the entire community to grow and learn. The site strives to represent all news, blogs, and personal views from the racing field to the person sitting at home.

This tab links to Derby Wars and other online betting sites and also provides wagering news and handicapping. In addition to the Derby Wars fantasy league, there are also links to major online betting sites so that you can put these newfound handicapping skills to the test. U.S. sites include NYRA Bets and TVG while there are also links to U.K. sites Mintbet, Bethard and several others. Horse Racing Nation is likely benefiting financially from affiliation with these sites since, in addition to providing direct links under the betting tab, there are also top and bottom banner ads on news articles and wiki posts with click links for betting site sign-ups that proclaim deposit bonuses. The betting tab also contains dedicated news feeds and blogs about recent successful wagering wins and trends across the international community.

Future handicap experts can also test their skills in the contest tab. There are various levels of pay-to-play games as well as limited free entry events that pay off in cash. You do need to establish an account to play either type of contest. Additionally, players are listed on leaderboards broken down by total cash winnings and number of individual pick successes.

  • About Us – If you need to contact the staff, links are found here along with a history of the website and links to their social media channels. They also explain some of their signature features and how these options developed over time.

Visual Appeal

The website is elegantly designed to provide only one main window of information. This simple design is a nice touch to keep the page from becoming too crowded with information, which can happen given the nature of the information that the website aggregates. There are no advertisements down the sides, only in banners across the top and bottom that fit seamlessly into the content. The main menu tabs are lined up at the top. Some of these site links are duplicated in the footer. Another nice feature of the website is the grey Ombre color combination. Each page starts out dark toward the top but gets lighter as it goes down. This color palette is comfortable on the eyes. Overall, the information on the site is easy to access and read without becoming too overwhelmed with graphics, video, and advertisements typical of many websites.

Competition: Other Horse Racing Magazines

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Horse Racing Nation touts itself as a standout in the field of thoroughbred racing and handicapping information. While there are several other magazines at the national and regional level that focus on horses and thoroughbreds, very few other sites or magazines focus on the betting aspect or instruct users in the ways of horse betting.

Daily Racing Form

This might be the closest competitor to Horse Racing Nation since the newspaper publishes over “up to 2,000 unique pages of statistical and editorial copy every day, in as many as 20 daily editions.” Both publications focus on betting. The main difference is the community interaction and wiki aspect of Horse Racing Nation that allows the public with any level of knowledge to jump in and help out.

Blood-Horse

Thoroughbred news, racing, breeding, and sales information.

American Racehorse Magazine

Previously called Southern Racehorse Magazine because it is a print resource for breeders throughout the southern United States. This magazine, however, does not cover betting.

Thoroughbred Daily News

Information on owners, trainers, and horses.

Handicapping Focus

Horse Racing Nation is most known for its handicapping information. In its simplest form, handicapping is choosing a winner based on extensive research that informs your opinion. A bet is placed on this research and not because the horse looked pretty that day, or the horse was sporting your favorite number. Those new to horse racing can learn about handicapping by reading the opinions and strategies of those that share their view on the site.

Data, Data Everywhere

Another aspect that makes Horse Racing Nation different from other sites is the minutia of information that you can find. They want to be the one website that you will need to find any information on any horse for any race. That’s quite an ambitious project to fulfill. Users can dig down into the data to learn more and get lost in the information overload. Both the staff and wiki users are continually adding data.

Social Media Presence

Besides the main website, you can also find postings of Horse Racing Nation daily on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. They update their Facebook posts multiple times a day with whatever essential events have happened since the last post. Visitors can comment on any of the posts and engage in conversation with the staff and other visitors to the site. On Twitter, they have over 24,000 followers and over 23,000 tweets. They post news, profiles, free picks, and racing results for others to quickly see and retweet to others. Their YouTube account allows you to get on the track with them while they interview trainers, owners, and jockeys. The videos are very popular and have been viewed over 3 million times with a base of over 9,000 subscribers and growing.

Verdict

Horse Racing Nation provides a one-stop shop for horse racing and betting enthusiasts. The data seems endless as you can start researching one horse and wind up somewhere entirely different by the end. The best aspect of the site is that all the information is free. As their funding seems to come from the sister betting sites and reputable, industry-specific advertisers. These advertisers are so well chosen that the banner ads look like they belong on the site. As opposed to other websites that have annoying pop-ups or ugly side column advertisement on each page.

Error Page

There is one error that keeps happening, a blank overlay when you click to a new screen.  The pop-up page should probably have some information on it. But it looks blank and prevents you from accessing the page until the overlay is closed. It pops up periodically when you change pages.  There is an easy to see X to close the page.

Since there is so much information on the site, make sure you have several hours to devote once you sit down to investigate. Otherwise, you may find that you’ve missed dinner and it’s already time for bed by the time you look at the clock again.

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