Trading Pre-Race Horse Market Full Time 

 February 10, 2021

By  Philip Borrowman

The number of people transforming themselves from regular punters to trading pre-race horse markets full time has absolutely blown up over the past couple of decades, proving to be a fantastic way for people to add a little more excitement when watching their favorite horses compete.

Once Betfair entered the sports betting market, bookmakers lost a large market share in the gambling industry as the Betfair exchange provides much better value bets compared to a normal high street bookmaker.

trading pre race horse market races

Pre-race horse trading is particularly profitable due to the large number of races everyday throughout the year. 

You can use a variety of betting strategies, scalping or swing trading being two common methods, to make small but consistent profitable traders with the aid of trading tolls like BetAngel or GeeksToy.

But, how do you go from being a normal gambler to a fully fledged full time trader on Betfair with the pre-race horse markets?

Let’s dig into this idea.

If you want to join the UK's No.1 Betfair Horse Trading Course, click here to learn more and secure bonuses.


Part of the fun in gambling is having the ability to not only cheer for, but also put money on something you love or have a great passion for.

However, there are a variety of factors which can have a dramatic effect on the outcome of any trade/bet, one of which is the idea of emotional betting.

emotional betting

It’s well known to anyone with betting experience, that our emotions can sometimes get the best of us, and as a result, cloud our judgement when placing a bet or entering a trade.

There are a plethora of emotions that overcome us throughout the gambling process, from the initial adrenaline rush you get when placing the bet, to the excitement or despair of how the bet plays out, even to the emotions that can then follow after.

Emotional Trading Guarantees Losses

Emotions make it difficult to know when to enter or exit a trade rationally.

It becomes so easy to get swept up in all of these feelings, as many betters are easily drawn to just a big name, or a gorgeous look, rather than taking a more logical, analytical approach to the market.

We have all been victims of it, we all have favorites, opinions, and pre-conceived notions about certain jockeys, horses or racetracks, which we allow to cloud our judgement when making a difficult decision.

However, If you want to be successful at horse betting, you are going to have to take the time to study form, and be strategic when deciding which horse to go with

Consider the background of the race itself, the location of the race, the time/distance, and other potential variables when making the decision.

Then the form guide will help lay out all of the relevant statistics for these factors that you are looking at.

However, aside from simply looking at the numbers, and coming up with a strategy, your primary focus should simply be to remove all emotion form the betting process entirely.

For even if you think it is positive emotion, it could sway you to not truly consider all of the potentially more logical options available to you, therefore allowing bias to enter the equation.

Consider Trading Indicators To Stop Losing Bets

There are a variety of analytical elements to consider, taking the time to understand all of the storylines, the history of the horses racing, as well as how to handle emotion, can dramatically improve your chances of making a profit.

If you enter a market at 6.0, because you are trading the resistance point, you must make a rational decision on when to exit the market, even if it goes into profit, based on what is happening live in the market.

swing trading with 10 tick profit

If there is a sudden shift, due to a large matched bet or another horse is drifting heavily, you have to adjust based on logic and not emotion.

A common mistake made by beginner traders is they “fall in love with a trade”, even after the indicators for entering the trade have long since gone, and they are deer caught in the headlights and flat out refuse to accept their trade has gone bad.

At this point, a trader has to exit the trade for a small loss before the market moves against them, but most do not and the further the market goes against them the more they lose.

Sadly, this stirs up their emotional distress even more and drags over to the next race and start with a losing mindset before they even open the next market inside BetAngel.


When it comes to managing your finances, it is essential that you understand the concept of compound interest.

Essentially, it is the idea that the interest you earn also earns interest, so not only do you earn interest on the principal sum, but you also earn interest on your own interest through saving it rather than withdrawing it.

It’s a very popular tool used my many people around the world to help save, and invest, while also helping to calculate the value of future savings.

Compounding your money can be done on a daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly basis, however the more often the money is compounded, the faster it will grow (also known as the compounding frequency).

When it comes to sports trading, this concept becomes very important and allows small traders to grow very fast, if they can implement this idea into their trading strategies.

Compound Your Profits

You start by compounding your bankroll and profits. Let the profits roll over and compound them day by day.

With compounding interest you can start with a smaller bankroll, and build up quickly as you learn, and once you reach a high level, the money you are using is just profit already made, so there is no risk of having any significant losses.

compound bankroll growth trading horses

Bankroll is the amount of money that you’re going to set aside for betting with one particular strategy, and so understanding the importance of bankroll growth is essential.

You have to develop a plan, look at the statistics, look at the bankroll size, and consider your own winning odds when coming up with a guide.

To many people find this notion seems daunting, and time-consuming, hence why many sports betters opt for much simpler strategies. 

Do Not Over-bet

Most traders make the mistake of starting with big bankrolls that are acquired by other sources, and overstake until they lose their whole bankroll within a handful of races.

This is why having a strong mentality is the most important part of the game, as is having the ability to take a step back and be patient, remembering that if it doesn’t feel right, then it probably isn’t meant to be.

Another hurdle that holds people back from compounding their profits, is that they either don’t need to or don’t want to spend any of their profits made off trading, and would rather put them towards bills or other expenses. 

Which makes sense as you don’t want to overwhelm yourself with costs due to gambling, however this doesn’t mean that you have to avoid the idea completely.

Rather take the time to create a side pot that you can use for a bankroll, that you do not need to cash out from.

So long that you understand all of the potential variables, the significance of having a strong mental, and a strong bankroll management system, then you should have no problem making a profit in this business.

Compounding Bankroll Example

Imagine if you had a bankroll of £500 and were staking 2% of your bankroll on every trade you enter, meaning you were trading with £10 stakes.

Imagine if you were calm and collected and you only entered another trade once each open position was matched.

Imagine if you were making on average £1.50 per race in profit because of you calm, methodical and unemotional approach to your trades.

  • For every race and £1.50 profit you bankroll would grow day by day.
  • Meaning your staking amount of 2% would also increase day by day.
  • Meaning your profits per trade would grow day by day.
  • Do you understand the point we are trying to make?

That is compounding your bankroll and profits, in a nutshell.


When it comes to horse trading, It’s always important to think in terms of longevity, and how what you’re doing is going to affect your bankroll down the line.

You must keep a strong mentality, always thinking about the long term, and your future within the horse trading world.

The key is to look for your strengths and weaknesses, this can be in terms of the market, the horse, the jockey/trainer, or other specific conditions.

think long term when trading horses

Take into account any factors that may give you an advantage, or disadvantage over others, and use this information to help guide you in your decision.

You must be patient however, because it will take time to wait for these signals to appear, especially during a live trade inside the markets.

But going through this experience will help to enhance your intuition, as well as provide you with valuable information that (if used correctly) can help you become more fruitful, and profitable.

You must be willing to trade hundreds, if not thousands, of races before you start finding your rhythm. Practise makes perfect.

There are so many subtle nuances to how a market moves, when bets are matched and how positions are filled.

Each tick movement can be different in every race, depending on the indicators and the human behaviour of other traders.

Advanced betting applications are essential for successful betters, as with many of the advanced software available today, one-click betting, super-fast price refreshes, and other unique features, allow for a convenient way for people to get in on the action.

Looking again at the longevity aspect, having some sort of trading software is not only recommended, but it is necessary if you want to have success with trading.

While you may be able to get by using most methods without any software, when you begin to move towards methods such as “In-play” or “pre-race” trading, then you are going to need software in order to place your bets precisely when you need to.

Aside from the speed aspect, using software can also prove to be advantageous due to their variety of features such as; multi-bet tools, stake control, market info, data graphs, training modes, as well the customer support you would receive from using their software.

The good news is that there are a multitude of trading software companies available for you today, the majority of which have a solid amount of customizable options as well.

At the end of the day, you are going to want software that if going to be useful in the long run, and so it should be able to serve your needs as an amateur, or as a professional trader. 


The idea of failing forward means to live life with no regrets, accept reality, be a strategist (not a victim), and be focused.

Life is way too short to live with regret, so the notion is that you should go after what you want, and be willing to take (calculated) risks.

It’s also paramount that you recognize when you have failed, take note of it, and move on.

Every time you fail (or lose a bet in this instance) do not take it as an eternal failure, instead look at it as an opportunity to grow and improve.

Often times when we make a mistake, it becomes so easy for us to focus on all of the things that you did wrong, or could have done better, and then make ourselves feel terrible about our decision.

However, a big misconception about failure, is that it only happens to those that are weak, or deserve for it to happen to them.

When in reality, some of the most successful people don’t avoid making mistakes, instead they ”fail forward” and turn that poor situation into a good one.

The thing is that progress is not possible without failure, if you look at any sport in the world, all of the best athletes for that sport had to learn to lose, before they could learn to win.

Learn To Lose But Learn From Losing

Michael Jordan for example, was one of the greatest basketball players (and athletes) of all time, however this was not always the case, as he was initially cut from his high school team, and slept on in the NBA draft.

Even when he got to the NBA, it wasn’t until he had lost to the Larry Bird-led Celtics, or the Magic Johnson-led Lakers, or the Isaiah Thomas-led Pistons, that he finally got to be Michael Jordan. 

If he hadn’t gone through the pain, and desperation of losing to these guys, feeling like he needed to fight back every time, then he never would have risen to become Michael Jordan.

The point is that no matter who you are, where you come from, or how much you’ve won (or lost), you still have to learn to lose, before you can learn to win.

In relation to horse trading, failing forward is really about leveraging mistakes, making a realistic assessment of risks, and the ability to live with the downside, as well as to experiment with new approaches.

If you record your trades, and accurately assess your mistakes, you will only become a stronger, and a more accurate better.

Self-awareness is key in any department, but especially when you have money on the line, and so staying disciplined, and being aware of where you stand is vital.

Try not to get over emotional on either side of the spectrum, try to stay as even-keel as possible, and through doing so it will help to give you a better understanding of the market, and improve your overall self-discipline.

Common Newbie Trading Error

The most common mistake for beginner traders is to get emotionally attached to a trade.

Let’s say for arguments sake you enter a trade at 6.1, after the price drifts rapidly put from 5.5, because you assume the price will dip back down again into the 5 range.

The price does NOT go the way you thought and instead continues to drift out to 6.3 and 6.5 and onwards…

This is where most newbies refuse to make a rational decision and simply sit and wait for the price to return, and their losses get bigger and bigger wiping out their entire days profit in a single trade.

They are making emotional decisions when trading based on their need and desire to win, not based on what’s “actually happening” in the market.

If this situation sounds familiar, then you need to address this issue and practice this problem. The only way to improve is to measure your failure and assess how to overcome it.

Full Time Trading

If you are trying to become a full-time trader on Betfair by trading the pre-race horse markets then you need to be aware of the points we have raised here today.

Is it possible to product consistent wins and a nice daily profit, 100% it very doable!

However, you must be willing to practice and think long term to implement any racing strategy successfully.

You must be willing to spend 1000s of hours recording your trades and identifying what your mistakes are so you can avoid them in the future.

Much like an athlete must practice the same move, tactics, and strength training again and again, 1000s of times, to perfect their abilities, you must perfect your trading.

If you want to join the UK's No.1 Betfair Horse Trading Course, click here to learn more and secure bonuses.

Philip Borrowman

I am a full-time marketer and part-time Betfair trader. I have over 10 years of experience in the pre-race and in-play horse trading markets and spend my days writing guides, tips and tricks to help beginner Betfair traders find their way to a profitable second income. Read my story of trading on Betfair.

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