Glossary of racing terms

The Royal Turf Club as an organization was born of a genuine and burning desire and passion for the development of the sport of horse racing. The organization is led by a group of professionals and horse racing enthusiasts who are keen on restoring to its former glory, a sport that holds much promise and potential.The Royal Turf Club aims to reinvigorate the sport by introducing free and fair horse racing across the country in both rural and urban area.

Action The manner in which a horse moves
Age All racing thoroughbreds in Sri Lanka are considered a year older on the 1st of January regardless of the date they are actually born
Airing A term for a horse not running at full speed
All Clear A race is declared official once the stewards are satisfied that nothing amiss has occurred and the riders have all weighed in at the correct weight
All Out Maximum effort put in by a horse whilst galloping either in a race or workout
All-Aged Race Generally a race for three year olds and upwards
Allowances Reduction of the weight carried by a horse owing to the handicap of the race, gender or on being ridden by an allowance claiming Jockey 
Also Ran A term used to describe a poor performance of a horse in a race
Anaesthetic A veterinary treatment to cause a horse to be insensitive to sensation
Apprentice A Jockey in the process of learning and assigned to a particular trainer under whom he receives instructions, guidance and support he is allowed to claim a reduction in the advertised weight a horse is assigned to carry.  He is eligible to claim alloted allowance on the weights until he rides 40 winners or attains the age of 25
Arthritis Painful condition due to degeneration of the structure of bone and leading to restriction of movement
Ataxia Loss of failure of muscular co-ordination
Atrophy Wasting, usually of the muscles
   
B
Back At The Knee When the knee of a horse has a backward arc, viewed fom the side
Back marker Horse at the back of the field during a race
Backward A horse who is not fit or fully developed
Bad Doer A horse with a poor appetite
Bandages Worn by horses to support or protect their legs during a race or exercise
Barren When a mare has been covered by a stallion but has not managed to become pregnant
Barrier Draw The ballot held to decide which starting stall each runner will occupy
Bay See entry - Colour
Bearing / Hanging When a horse deviates from a straight line, it is said to be either bearing in or bearing out
Bit There are a steel or rubber bar attached to the bridle which fits into a horse's mouth and is the main means the jockey has of exerting control, several types of bits including a D Bit, whose rings are shaped like a letter D, greater flexibility
Black Type Bold type in a horse's shows Group and Listed/Stakes winners.  If a horse has lots of black type it means it is from a family credentials in high class races
Black  See entry under Colour
Blanket Finish When horses finish very close together at the end of a race, so close that a blanket could encompass them
Bleeder Horse who bleeds internally during a race or in excercixe.  Usually horses bleed when some blood vessels around the lungs rupture or haemorrhage to a certain extent (breaking a blood vessel).  When this happens, a horse will usually drop back in a race and a discharge of blood from the nostrils may be visible
Blinkers Device fitted to a horse's head that limits its field of vision, mainly from each side.  Blinkers are used to help horses concentrate in races or to encourage them to run straighter
Blood Typing Analysis of a blood sample to verify parentage, though DNA typing, which is even more accurate, is taking over.
Blood vessels Network of arteries and veins
Bloodstock Agent Person who purchases horses for other people as a business, with a commission being charged
Blown Up When a horse starts to drop out of contention during a race due to lack of fitness
Blowout When a horse is given a final sharp (Short) workout a few days before a race
Bobble A horse making a bad step away from the starting gate
Bolt When a horse runs away with its jockey
Boxed In To be trapped between, behind or inside of other horses during a race
Breaking In Training of a young horse to get it used to wearing a saddle and bridle and carrying a rider.  The term usually used is 'breaking in a horse'
Breakdown When a horse goes lame during a race
Breather Giving a horse in a race a chance to conserve some energy by easing off briefly
Breeder The owner of a mare at the time she gives birth to a foal
Breeze When a horse works at a moderate speed
Bridle Piece of tack that fits over a horse's head and to which the bit and reins are attached
Broken down When a horse sustains an injury - Normally a tendon/soft issue injury requiring a long rest to recover
Broodmare A mare at stud who is kept with the aim of producing a foal
Brown See entry under Colour
Bund School A tight racetrack of less than a mile in circumference used for trotting
   
C
Cast A horse who is lying on its side or back in a box/stall but is unable to get up because of its proximity to a wall
Caulk or Calk A projection downwards from the back of a shoe to give the horse a better grip, particularly on dirt surfaces when they are wet
Checked A horse pulled back momentarily by its jockey because there is suddenly no room in front
Cheek Pieces / Winkers Usually a lambs wool roll placed on either side of a horses bridle which limits its field of vision, mainly from each side, enabling the horse to focus his attention to the front
Chesnut or Chestnut See Colour
Chute Extension of the backstretch or homestretch to allow a longer straight run
Classic A term used to describe the very top races, usually confined to three-year-olds, in a particular country. For example, the Derby in England, the Kentucky Derby in the US are both Classics
Clerk of the Course The official whose duty it is to inspect and approve the track for racing under the Orders & Rules of Racing
Clerk of the Scales The official whose duty it is to make sure the jockeys carry the allocated weights on horses in races, weighing them before and afterwards
Colour Or Color (1) Thoroughbred racehorses can be described as:
  •  Black - Coat, limbs, mane and tail are predominantly black
  •  Brown - A mixture of black and brown in the coat.  Black limbs, mane and tail
  •  Bay/Brown - Coat is mainly brown with a bay muzzle.  Black limbs, mane and tail
  •  Bay - Any shade of brown between bay/brown and ches(t)nut.  A bay's limbs, mane and tail are always black however
  •  Chesnut or Chestnut - Various shades of yellow hair on the body, ranging from an intense red-yellow through to a subtler golden yellow mane limbs and tail may be any shade of coat colour of flaxen
  •  Grey or Gray - A mixture of black and white hair all over
  •  Roan - A mixture of red and white or brown and white.  Limbs, mane and tail may be black, roan or ches(t) nut.
Colour Or Color (2) The jacket and cap worn by jockeys in a race.  Each owner has their own set of colours which are registered with the relevant turf authority
Colt An ungelded male horse aged under five
Company Term used to describe what class of race of horse runs in, for example Group One company, handicap company
Conditions Race A contest in which the weight the horse carries is deternimed by factors such as age, sex and the races it has won previously.  It is not a handicap
Conformation A horse's physical make-up or look
Connections People involved with a horse including the owner, trainer, jockey and stable staff
Consignor The person offering a horse for sale through an auction
Contract Rider A jockey who rides for a particular stable.  Also referred to as a retained rider or stable jockey
Countries Horseracing is a worldwide sport.  All of the following countries have some kind of organised sport, mostly run by a recognised Turf Authority. Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Channel Islands, Chile, China, Colombia, Crotia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Isreal, Italy, Jamaica, Japan Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Macau, Malaysia, Malta, Martinique, Mauritius, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Phillipines, Poland, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Trinidad, Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom (Britian) Uruguay, States of America, Venezuela, Yugoslavia and zimbabwe
Course and Distance winner When a horse has won before on this racecourse and in a race over the same distance, he is called a course and distance winner.
Cover When a stallion breeds with a mare
Cribber Also known as  wind sucker.  A horse who bites objects with its teeth and draws air into its stomach
Curb Thickening of the plantar tarsal liagment in the hock (hind leg) of the horse.  The liagment is thickened a few inches below the point, of the hock
Cushion The surface or sub-surface of a racetrack in dirt/sand racing
Cut in the ground A description of the ground condition, when there is give in the surface, also called 'soft going'
   
D
Dam Mother of a horse
Dead-Heat When the judge cannot split two or more horses at the finishing line.  The winning prize-money is split between the winners
Dead-Heats Can apply to any finishing position. i.e. first, second, third, fourth etc.,
Declaration When a horse is going to run
Dirt Type of track where the surface is mainly made up of sand or dirt
Disqualification When a person is punished for a breach of the rules of racing
Distance (1) How far a race is
Distance (2) If a horse is said to have been beaten a 'distance', historically that meant beaten now it is used generally for over 30 lengths
Distances The gap between horses at the end of a race, measured in lengths or the following sub-divisions of lengths (in ascending order), nose, short head, head, neck, 1/2 length, 3/4 length
Dope Illegal drugs given to a horse
Double The winnings made from one horse is rolled onto the second horse
Draw The stalls position allocated randomly to each horse in a race
Driving When a horse has to be strongly ridden by its jockey to keep its position in a race
Dubai World Cup The world's richest race, worth US$ 10 million, which was founded in 1996, and is run at Nad Al Sheba Racecourse, Dubai, over 10 furlongs on dirt in late March
Dwelt A slow start by a horse in a race
   
E
Eased When a jockey stops riding out a horse in a race.  This is usually as a precaution against injury or when a horse is out of contention
Eligible Qualified to run in a particular race
Enclosure The area where the Runners gather for viewing before and after the race
Enquiry A review of the race by the stewards for the purpose of discovering possible rule violations
Entire General term for an uncastrated male horse, regardless of age though this usually means horses aged five and above
Entries Horses must be entered for a race before they can run.  The process of entering horses can have several stages, although these vary from country to country.  Big races may then have one or more forfeit stages, where connections of a horse must state (and pay more money) to keep a horse entered.  Entries in North America are usually referred to as nominations
EVA Equine Viral Arteritis eteris is a highly infection disease.  Symptoms include lethargy, depression, swelling in the lower legs, conjunctivities and swelling around the eye socket and upper eyelid.  Abortion may occur in pregnant mares and the illness can result in death
Exercise Rider Rider who partners a horse during its training work-outs
Extended When a horse has to be asked by its rider to produce maximum effort, or run at full speed
   
F
Faltered A horse that was in contention early in the race but drops back in the late stages
Farrier Specialist blacksmith who carries out work in connection with the preparation or treatment of the foot of a horse for the immediate reception of a shoe, the fitting by nailing or otherwise of a shoe to the foot, or the finishing off of such work to the foot
Feature Races Top Races
Fetlock Joint located between the cannon bone and he long pastern bone
Field The horse's set to run in a race
Filly Female horse aged under five
Finishing Straight The part of the course which runs in front of the Granstand and includes the finishing post
Foal A horse aged up to a year (all  horses have their birhdays on January 1st (Northern Hemisphere) whist in the Southern Hemisphere America or August 1st (Australasia)
Foaled When a mare has given birth and often referred to as 'dropping' a foal
Form A horse's past performance
Founding Sires All thoroughbred horses can trace their parentage back to three stallions imported into Europe from the Middle East in the late 17th centuries - The Darley Arabian, the Byerl(e)y Turk and the Godolphin Arabian
Fractional Times The time for each section of a race
Frog A soft v-shaped pad on the sole of a horse's hoof
Front Runner A horse who leads the others in a race
Full Brother (or Sister) Two or more horses that share the same sire and dam
Furlong A unit of measurement still used to describe the distances of races in some contries, including Britain. Furlong comes from the term 'Furrow Long" originally a term used in agriculture.  A furlong is 220 yards (approximately 201 metres).  In North America, a furlong is usually referred to as an 'eighth' due to the fact that there are eight furlongs in a mile 
   
G
Gait The way in which a horse moves.  In ascending order of speed, horses walk, trot, canter and gallop (European). See also Action
Gallop Fast work (Europe) or canter (America)
Gate As in starting gate, an expression for the stalls into which horses are located for the start of Flat races
Gelding A male horse of any age that has been castrated.  Generally, geldings can run in all the top races in Norh America and Australasia.  Geldings were once excluded from nearly all of the main Flat races in Europe but nowadays they can run in most although the Classics remain an exception.  The majority of horses running in ordinary races around the world tend to be geldings, as they do not develop the temperament of a stallion
Genuine A horse that is honest and puts in every effort when racing.  It also can be used to describe a horse as having all the correct attributes
Get the trip Usually said of a horse that stays the particular distance of the race
Girth Strip (usually made of leather and elastic) put under a horse's belly to which the saddle is attached
Going Depicts the state of the ground on the racetrack on any given day.  The track conditions can be described as follows and are listed in order of increasing moisture within the ground:  Firm, Good, Soft, Heavy
Going Away To win with an ever-increasing margin
Good-Topped Good-Topped means that the horse has strength and/or quality in the neck and through the shoulders and girth to the quarters
Granddam Second dam or grandmother of a horse
Green Description of a horse who shows signs of inexperience or not knowing what to do in a race
Grey or Gray See entry under 'C' for Colour
Group Races The European way of categorising top races started in 1971 - smilar to the North American Graded system. There are Group One, Two and Three races
   
H
Hacked up When a horse has won easily
Half-Brother (Or Sister) When two or more horses share their dam but not their sire
Halter Piece of track similar to a bridle, but lacking the usual bit.  Usually worn by horses when they are not being ridden in and around the stables
Hand Ride When the rider does not resort to the whip in a race
Handicap A type of race in which horses carry different weights according to their ability, with the best carrying more weight.  The aim of a handicap is to give horses an equal chance.
Handicapper (1) An official who assesses how a horse should be rated, taking into account its past performances
Handicapper (2) A horse that runs in handicaps
Handily When a horse is able to hold a position in a race without having to exert all its effort
Hands The unit of measurement for assessing the height of horses.  One hand is equal to four inches (just over 10cm). Horses are measured to the withers (the part of the horse where the neck ends) and racehorses usually measure between 15 and 17 hands
Hands and Heels When a horse is ridden without the use of a whip
Hanging When a horse is tiring and does not run in a straight line
Hard Held Winning or running with ease
Hard Mouthed A horse with little sensitivity in the mouth, so therefore hard to restrain
Head Collar Piece of tack attached to a horse's head.  Can also be referred to as a halter
Head of the Stretch Beginning of the straight run to the finish line
Head A margin between horses.  One horse leading another by the length of its head
Held up A horse is held up when it is positioned to the back of the racing field in a race
Home Turn The final bend leading into the straight which has the finishing line on it
Homebred Horse bred by his or her owner
Hoof The foot of a horse
Horse Any thoroughbred of any sex but more specifically an ungelded male aged five or older, often referred to as an entire
Hung (left or right) A horse not maintaining a straight line/position when racing, leaning either to the left or to the right of the racetrack
   
I
In Foal When a mare is pregnant
In the Money Generally speaking, when a horse finishes in the first three or four.  This term refers to the fact that in most races prize-money is available to horses that occupy these positions, though increasingly prize-money is awarded further down the filed these days in valuable events, ofen to sixth sometimes beyond
Inquiry Held by stewards to judge whether any rules have been broken by jockeys during races which may have affected the chances of other horses, stewards can disqualify horses for infractions and punish jockeys
Interference A situation during a race where a horse is impeded by one or a number of other runners
Irons Abbreviation for stirrup irons, the pieces of tack into which jockeys place their feet
   
J
Jockey Rider who partners a horse during a race, usually a professional
Judge Official at the racecourse who determines the finishing position of each horse in a race, the distances between them and usually the winning time
Jumper General term for a horse that runs over hurdles or in steeplechases
Juvenile Another term for a two-year-old horse
   
L
Lameness Condition in which a horse does not carry weight equality on all four legs, due to disease or injury
Laminitis Inflammation of the foot, specifically of the base membrane of the laminae of the hoof capsule
Lead Lead weights carried each side of the saddle to make up any difference between the rider and his equipment's weight and that allocated to his mount in a race
Lead Bag Leather cloth with pockets that hold flat pieces of lead.  They are removable and interchangeable.  
Leg Up When a jockey is given assistance to mount a horse
Length The distance between a horse's nose and tail (around eight feet).  Used for determining the distance between horses at the end of a race
Listed Race A stakes race below Group status
Lunge Excercising a horse in a confined area, usually with a long rein attached
   
M
Maiden A horse which has never won a race.  There are races specifically for maidens
Mare A female horse aged five or older
Marker A pole which makes distance a racecourses.  The 100 metre, 200 metre etc
Martingale Item of track designed to restrain a horse.  Usually consists of a neck strap fastened to the girth, which then passes through the forelegs and is attached to the reins
Muzzle (1) The nose and lips of a horse
Muzzle (2) A device placed over the nose and lips to stop a horse biting another horse or eating
   
N
Name Every horse that runs must have a name registered with the Turf Authority in the country where it is based. No two horses can have the same name
Nearside Left-hand side of a horse, from where riders are usually mounted
Neck Unit of measurement about the length of a horse's neck
Nod Lowering a head.  To win by a nod, a horse extends its head with its nose touching the finish line ahead of a close competitor
Nominations The complete list of runners entered by owners and trainers for a race
Non-runner A horse which is removed from the starting field, after being confirmed to run in a race
Northern Hemisphere All horses born in the Northern Hemisphere become a year old on January 1st.  See also Age
Nose Smallest advantage a horse can win by.  Can also be referred to as a short half head
Noseband Strap that goes over a horse's nose in order to secure the bridle.  A drop (sometimes referred to as a figue of eight) noseband goes over the nose and under the rings on the bit and helps to prevent the tongue from sliding over the bit
Number Cloth Cloth under the saddle with the number of the horse printed on it and often the name of the horse or race sponsor. Sometimes known as the saddle cloth
   
O
Objection After a race, the rider of a beaten horse can claim a foul by the winner or another horse.  This objection is then heard by the stewards.  An objection can also come from racing officials, such as the clerk of scales if a rider fails to weigh in or has carried the wrong weight
Off the bridle When a horse isn't travelling freely and the jockey is having to push him along, he is described as 'off the bridle'
Off the pace When a horse isn't keeping up with other horses in a race
Official A person having official duties at a race meeting
Offside Right-hand side of a horse
On the Bit/ Off the Bit On the bit means when a horse is travelling well (i.e. the bit is still tight in its mouth), whereas if a horse if off the bit it is having to be ridden to maintain position
Over the Top When a horse is considered to have reached its peak for that season
Over-reach When a horse's back leg(s) strike into its front leg(s)
Overweight When a jockey is too heavy to ride at the horse's allotted weight he puts up overweight.  In some countries, there is a limit on the amount of overweight allowed on a horse in a race
Owner A person owning part or all of a horse.  An owner may be a single person, a group of people (often referred to as a syndicate), company or a Stud
   
P
Pace The speed at which a race is run.  Up with the pace means close to the leaders, off the pace means some way behind
Pacemaker A horse that runs in a race to ensure there is a good pace.  Referred to as a rabbit or pacesetter in North America and Australasia
Paddock (1) The area of a racecourse where horses are paraded before each race saddling often takes place there.  Can be called the parade ring
Paddock (2) A grass field where horses are kept
Paddock / Parade Ring The area where horses can be viewed prior to a race
Passport A horse's passport gives its details including markings and is used to confirm identity in some racing jurisdictions
Pastern The sloping bone in the lower leg which connects the hoof to the fetlock
Pattern Races High-class, non-handicap races.  Pattern races are sub-divided into Group One, Group Two and Group Three races, with Group one being the best
Padigree Details of parentage and ancestry recorded in a stud book
Penalty Extra weight carried by a horse in a race if it has won since the original weights were determied, particularly in a handicap or sometimes it has won a particular type of race
Photo Finish When two or more horses finish close together at the end of a race and the judge needs to consult a photo at the finishing line, which is automatically taken, to determine the placings
Pick Up the Bit A term used to describe a horse that takes an interest in the race
Pinhook To buy a horse, usually at auction and usually a foal/weanling, with the intention of selling it later on
Place A horse is generally said to be placed if it finishes first, second or third and sometimes fourth in a race.  
Plate (1) A traditional prize for winning a race additional to the money
Plate (2) Light weight shoes used by horses in a race
Pole A marker pole to denote distance.  The pole 200 metres from the finish
Post (1) The post which horses pass at the end of the race.  Usually referred to as the winning post
Post Position Description for where a horse is drawn and placed in the stalls or gate
Post Time Designated time for a race to start
Prize-Money Money which horses race for.  Each race has a certain level of prize-money which comes from different sources including the money paid by connections to enter their horse (known as stakes) and ofen from commercial sponsorship, as well as from the racecourse.
Propping Propping is when a horse suddenly stops froward motion and plants either momentarily or long term its front or hind legs in an effort to stop what it has been doing.  A horse can 'prop' for only a millisecond whilst looking at something new that catches their eye or they can downright stop and refuse to move or again in an act of defiance or independence
Public Trainer A trainer who looks after horses from several owners, rather than just one owner (a private trainer) or themselves
Pull Up To bring to a halt a horse during or after a race or training session
Pulling A horse that is unsettled in the early part of a race and is using too much energy fighting the jockey by pulling against the bridle
Punter General term for someone who gambles
Purse Another term for the prize-money of a race - can be the part not put up by owners to enter their horses
   
Q
Quarantine A process whereby horses going to other countries have to spend a certain period in isolation, either before or after arrival or both to ensure they are free from disease.  Horses can leave quarantine only when the veterinary authority states that the horse offers no risk.  Quarantine also refers to the general process whereby sick horses are isolated from others in order to prevent the spread of infection
   
R
Racecard or Racebook A programme for the days racing
Rails Barriers which determine the lay-out of a racetrack
Rank A horse that refuses to settle.  Hard pullng is another term for this
Reserve (1) The minimum price on owner is willing to sell his horse for at public auction
Reserve (2) A horse selected as a standby runner in a race, in case an entry drops out
Ridden out When a horse is asked for the effort to win a race
Rig A horse that has only one, or neither, of its testicles descended.  Rigs usually have to be gelded although there have been some notable exceptions, such as the champion European miler Selkirk, now a successful stallion
Ringer or Ring In An imposter in a race, a better horse illegally substituted for another and pretending to be that horse
Ringworm Contagious fungal disease.  Results in small circular patches where the hair falls out
Roan See entry under 'Colour'
Run Free A horse going too fast too early, which then can't settle into the race
Runner A horse taking part in a race
   
S
Saddle Piece of riding equipment on which the jockey sits on the horse.  It is placed on the horse's back an usually has a cloth or pad placed underneath (known as the saddle cloth) to protect the horse's back and absorb sweat
Saddle Cloth (1) See above
Saddle Cloth (2) Same as Number Cloth.  Cloth under the saddle with the number of the horse and, sometimes, the name of the horse or race sponsors printed on it
Scope The potential in a horse
Scratch When a horse is taken out of a race it had been entered for
Second Dam A horse's maternal grandmother.  The third dam is the great-grandmother, fourth dam the great-great-grandmother etc.
Sesamoids Two small bones located above and at the back of the fetlock joint
Sex Allowance In many races fillies and mares are able to carry less weight than their male counterparts, the allowance usually being 1 kg
Shadow Roll Usually a lamb's wool roll half up the horse's face to keep him from seeing his own shadow
Shank Rein attached to the bridle, used to lead a horse
Shoe The fitting of shoes to a horse, usually by a farrier
Short half Head or Nose The smallest distances a horse can win a race by
Short Runner Horse who does not stay the distance of a race
Silks See entry under 'Colours'
Sire The father of a horse
Socks White marking on a horse which go from the top of the hoof to the ankles
Soft (track) Condition of a turf course with a large amount of moisture
Sound A horse who is fit to race
Southern Hemisphere All horses born in the Southern Hemisphere become a year older on July 1st (if born in South America) or on August 1st (if born in Australasia)
Splint A bony growth on the tendon
Spotters Employees of sales auctions who bring bids to the notice of auctioneers
Spread a plate When a racing plate or horseshoe comes off
Sprint Short race, less than one mile
Stakes Race Set weight races
Stallion A male horse who is used for breeding
Stalls See entry for 'Starting Stalls'
Starter (1) Racecourse official who co-ordinates the start of a race.  His primary aim is to ensure that the start is level and fair
Starter (2) A horse who takes part in the race.  A horse who enters the starting stalls and is in them when the stalls open in deemed a starter even if the horse remains in the stalls
Starting Stalls Mobile mechanism of compartments for horses.  Runners enter the stalls at the start of a race and, when all have been loaded, the starter operates a lever or button which opens all the front doors of the stalls simultaneously.  Before stalls, horses lined up at the start behind a tape or barrier
Stayer A horse that usually runs in races longer than 2000 metres
Steadied When a rider controls a horse to prevent it from going faster
Stipendary Stewards Officials at racecourses who are in overall charge of the conduct of the race meeting as far as the rules go
Stick Another word for a jockeys whip
Stifle The equivalent of the human knee - the joint between the femur and tibia with a kneecap attached to the front
Stirrups Also know as irons, they are the pieces of tack where jockeys place their feet.  Usually metal shaped rings in the form of a D
Strangles Highly infectious disease of the upper respiratory tract
Stretch As in home stretch, the final straight of a race
Stud (1) Organisation that breeds horses.  The term stud also refers to the actual physical buildings of the stud itself, such as stables and barns
Stud (2) Another term for a stallion in North America
Stud Book Record kept by a turf authority detailing the pedigree and ancestry of thoroughbred horses - stallions, broodmares and their progeny
Surcingle Strap placed over the saddle and girth to prevent them from moving
Suspension Punishment for breaking the rules imposed by stewards mainly on jockeys but also applicable to trainers, owners and horses.  Suspensions can be as short as one day, or years in very serious cases
Suspensory Ligaments attached to the sesamoids
Sway Back Long, weak back
   
T
Tack Shortened from tackle, the general term for equipment fitted to a horse before it can be ridden such as saddle, reins, bridle and stirrups
Teaser Horse used to test whether a mare is ready to be covered by a stallion.  The teaser approaches the mare behind a shield known as a teasing board
Tendons Tough fibrous cords that connect muscle to bone or other tissue in legs
Thoroughbred Breed of horse, originating in Britain, used as racehorses.  All thoroughbred horses can trace their parentage back to three stallions imported into Europe from the Middle East in the late 17th and early 18th centuries - the Darley Arabian, the Byerl(e)y Turk and the Godolphin Arabian thoroughbreds are registered in recognised stud books around the world
Tight track Generally a narrow track with tight turns
Tongue Tie Strip of fabric tied round a horse's tongue to stop choking during a race.  Also known as a tongue strap
Top Weight The horse with the highest weight in a race, particularly in handicaps
Track Record Fastest time recorded for each race distance at a racecourse
Trainer Person with responsibility for preparing horses for racing
Trial or Mock Race A race designed for horses that have a bad record at the starting stalls, and sometime those going on to participate in a big race (No Prizemoney is on offer)
Trot Modest speed gait in which a horse moves from one diagonal pair of legs to the other.  One foreleg and the opposite hind leg are on the ground as the other foreleg and opposite hind leg are moving forward. This is faster than a walk but slower than a canter or gallop
Turf Type of track surface, made up of grass
Turn of Foot The ability of a racehorse to show a burst of acceleration
Two-Year-Old A horse becomes two on January 1 (in the Northern Hemisphere) of the second year following the date of its birth
Tying Up A condition which involves the muscles accumulating lactic acid, causing them to lose their elasticity and leading to cramp
   
U
Ultrasound Using ultrasonic waves to give images of internal structures
Under Wraps When a horse is kept under restraint during exercise or in a race
Unfurnished A horse that has not filled its frame and has yet to finish growing
Ungenuine A horse that does not put in every effort when racing and can be upredictable in its performances
Unplaced A horse that finishes outside the main picture, which is generally the first three past the winning post, depending on the size of the field 
Unsound Describes any condition or conformation fault that stops a horse being able to race
Untried (1) A horse who has not been in full training or tested for speed
Untried (2) A stallion that has not bred yet
   
V
Valet Person who looks after Jockey's tack, riding equipment and silks, and generally helps prepare for rides
Vet Short for veterinarian, a person qualified to treat horses
Visor Device which limits a horse's vision to aid concentration.  A visor is used to have the same effect as blinkers
   
W
Walk Over When only one horse runs in a race.  The jockey must go through the procedure of weighing in and weighing out and then has to canter the horse past the winning post
Weaning A foal who has been weaned off its mother but is not yet a yearling
Weighing In/Weighing Out Jockeys must sit or stand on the racecourse scales before and after every race to verify their racing weight to the Clerk of the Scales who is the official in charge of the weighing room
Weight The load carried by a horse during a race.  Weight consists primarily of the jockey and his tack.  If this does not provide enough to equal the weight allocated to the horse, pieces of lead are added to the sides of the saddle or lead bag
Weight For Age Fixed scale of weights carried by horses in races depending on age, sex, distance of race and time of year
Whip Used by jockeys to help keep horses under control and to encourage them to go faster.  Can be called stick or bat
Winning Post Indicates where the winning line is
Withers The part of the horse where the neck ends
Work General term for horses excercising
   
Y
Yearling A horse aged between one and two years.  Nothern Hemisphere horses celebrate their first birthday on the first January 1 after birth