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Horse Racing in India came as a gift of British rule. The British apart from being effective rulers were very health conscious also and this is the reason that they always found time for health maintaining games and sports. Horse riding and racing were one of those activities. In the British colonial rule many racecourses came into existences which are even today used for high class Horse races. Some of these are namely Mahalaxmi racecourse situated in Mumbai and Calcutta racecourse at modern day Kolkata.
The fashion or the trend of Horse riding and racing from the British rulers passed onto the Indian emperors and became the part of our legacy since then. The various Nizams and Sultans of various states of India adapted this sport as the part of their daily life and the source of entertainment which resulted in quality racing courses like the ones we see today at Mysore and Hyderabad.
In the India after independence Horse racing was just famous among the rich and the several other high class officials of the government body. But since the betting at Horse races was legalized by the law long back and the entrance fee to see such races was quite low therefore common man soon came into the involvement of this passionate sport. It was not at all gambling in anyway whatsoever. Betting on the horse was always and will be forever a calculated risk after a long analysis of results of previous events.
Soon the Turf Authorities of India realized their chance to win the place into people’s heart forever and many new events were introduced later on and the game became highly commercialized with presence of even more bars, restaurants, and Tote booths around the racecourses. Races started to happen more frequently and many racecourses started featuring races on daily basis which was later found out to be not a hit formula. So seasons were kept for the Horse races and the proper schedules came into being.
Many racecourses host two seasons while others are still having a single season for the racing events to happen. This has surely increased the wait for the events to occur amongst the fans and hence the excitement in the races which results in high turnovers as compared to earlier days. The off seasons are used for the maintenance of the racecourses, the training of horses under the supervision of highly skilled trainers and professional jockeys so that the races deliver thrills better than the previous seasons.
Under the close check of Turf Authorities of India and the increasing level of quality of infrastructure available at various Stud farms across India the level of the Indian Horse racing has increased considerably in the last few years. With the increase in the sponsors who are interested to provide more and more funds for the various Derbies and championships held at various racecourses across the nation and the increased level of betting by the punters who love the Horse races and follow them like a passion has certainly helped the cause in many ways.
These factors are surely accountable for the better performances of the Horses as well as jockeys which is improving day by day. Of course the support of the fans and the bids by Punters and the prize money helps them a lot in increasing their willingness to perform better than their previous efforts. Even the training facilities, the structures, the resources have significantly improved even at the racecourses but there is still a lot of scope for improvement.
With little more attention towards this sport by the Government of India can work wonders for it. Even if the online bookmarking is legalized both the Government and the Turf Authorities of India are bound to have endless profits from it. But everything has to be planned out well for implementation at such a grand level. Even the management still has to learn many lessons from the events happening at international levels and implement the learning locally to improve the quality of Horse racing in India to match the International levels.
The future seems bright both for the Jockeys and the Punters with new sponsors coming into picture. Also the love for the game seems to increase in India due to improved game qualities and infrastructure. Moreover Internet has paid a huge contribution in letting people know about these races, their fixtures in future coming events, tips on how to bet on the races and more than everything else helping in promoting it to each and every corner of urban areas of the Indian continent. The information about each and everything about Indian Horse racing is available at the convenience of a single click.
The Turf Authorities of India should make more efforts in advertising and marketing the events properly. Use of TV and print media has a large part to play if Indian Horse racing has to see the glorious morning when these racing events will be compared to events like Cricket and Hockey world cup. With the intrusion of media into it, the development will surely increase its speed many times then the current speed. The opening of involvement of online Bookmarkers with the event will surely attract foreign investors to sponsor in the Indian events. But this step has to be taken very carefully under strong set of rules and influential guidance at a large level.
As discussed earlier also the scope for improvement is still endless when we compare our infrastructure to the events happening at International level. With little better management and utilization of the resources Indian racecourses and racing events can really become part of International championships soon in the coming future. Till then let us all hope for the best and wait for the glory to kiss the feet of Indian Horse racing.