Seeing the Best of Ireland at the Galway Races 

Michaela Bobulinski

 July 23, 2021

Following a tumultuous year of pandemic worries, all sports enthusiasts are desperate for sporting events that can bring us back together and put a smile on our faces. Thankfully, this year is characterized by a huge number of great sporting events such as the Euro 2020, the Olympic Games, Wimbledon, and finally, the Galway Races. Here we will have a closer look at the Galway Races and provide betting tips and bookmakers that could enrich your horse racing experience.

Horse Racing is Huge in Ireland

Ireland is not new to horse racing with horses being a recurring part of Ireland’s culture and with horse racing being one of the main traditions of the island. Every last Monday of July, the Ballybrit Racecourse in Galway braces itself to host Ireland’s largest horse racing festival. With last year’s event being carried out behind closed doors, people all around the world who have horse racing at heart can probably heave a sigh of relief and get ready for this magnificent event once again.

During this 7-day event, one is bound to find races that tickle their fancy and this year’s event will be no exception. Two races that come to mind in this sense are the Galway Plate and the Guinness Galway Hurdle Handicap. Not only do horse racing fans get to enjoy these races of great quality, but it is also possible to take advantage of the great opportunities these races offer in terms of betting.

The Tote Galway Plate

The Tote Galway Plate race is one of the most sought-after events of the festival. The race is run by horses older than four years old for 2 miles, six furlongs, and 111 yards. As an event, it promises a great and tough race full of brilliantly timed jumps, aside from being a historical race in its own right. Prominent horse racing trainers every year try their best to take this prestigious win. Prestige is not the only thing at stake though as first-place gets over €170,000, which is why this race is of huge interest to trainers, fans, and even bookmakers and their customers.

The Galway Plate race will be run on the third day of the Galway Races, specifically Wednesday 28th July. This will be the fourth race of the day and will get underway at 6:15 pm.

The Guinness Galway Hurdle Handicap

The Guinness Galway Hurdle Handicap is yet another prestigious race. This is also run by horses of four years or older over a distance of two miles and 111 yards. The race attracts great handicappers from both Ireland and the United Kingdom, particularly due to an impressive prize pot of €300,000. Regardless of the race having been run behind closed doors, last year’s race proved to be one of the most spellbinding races and we are sure that we will get more of the same this year.

The Galway Hurdle Handicap will be run on the fourth day of the Galway Races on the 29h of July. This day is known as Ladies Day as all the women dress up in the best attire and an award is handed out to the woman with the best fashion. The race will get underway at 6:45 pm and will be the fourth race of the day.

Betting Tips on Galway Races

Events such as these tend to grab the interest of bettors all over the world. Needless to say, with competitive races of this quality, there is also ample opportunity to bet on it at numerous Irish sports betting sites. All the top betting sites will generally have live streams that you can watch so that you do not miss any of the action. Here are a few points that you should keep in mind before betting on big horse racing events such as the Galway Races.

Trainers Are More Important Than You Think

Trainers do play a great part when it comes to the chances of a horse winning a race. For example, we should not be too surprised if a horse trained by Gordon Elliott does very well in the races that we just mentioned above. Elliott has been an extremely successful trainer and is not regarded as one of the best trainers that Ireland has ever produced. He has three Plates to his name which is a great indication that it is a wise move to bet on a horse of his.

Similarly, Willie Mullins is another trainer that has had a hugely successful career. He has won the Galway Hurdle three times out of the last five races, so you would not be doing yourself any harm if you bet on a horse that was trained by him.

Jockeys Are Vital Too

The jockey is equally as important. Successful jockeys such as Robbie Power, Mark Walsh, and Patrick Mullins can be the difference between backing a winning horse and a losing one. In addition, it does help to check whether these jockeys have been more successful in one race rather than another – not all racetracks are the same, so it is wise to see whether a jockey has a preference.

Recent Trends

It is also crucial to do some research and not bet blindly based on names, even the ones mentioned above. It is important to check the recent form of both the horse in question and the jockey. In addition, recent trends may give a great idea of what one might expect in both the Galway Plate and the Galway Hurdle Handicap. The following are some of the main trends.

Galway Plate Tips:

  • Only 1 horse out of the previous 17 winners was older than 9 years old.
  • Out of the last 17 winners, 13 horses were bred and trained in Ireland.
  • Out of the last 17 races, 15 winning horses had already won at least one race of 2 miles and 4 furlongs before.

Galway Hurdle Handicap Tips:

  • Out of the last 17 winners, 14 horses were between 5-7 years of age.
  • From the last 17 races, all winning horses had previously won at least one 2m hurdle race.
  • 16 of the last 17 races had winning horses that were bred in Ireland.

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Where You Can Bet on the Galway Races

Whilst picking the right horse is crucial, it can also be highly beneficial to pick one bookmaker over another. Here you can see some of the best Irish sports betting sites to bet on horse racing to make sure to maximize your profits.

Paddy Power

Being an Irish bookmaker, one cannot overlook Paddy Power and the betting opportunities it offers in terms of horse racing. Not only does paddypower.com offer good odds and different markets to pick from but it also provides the player with a very clear design that can facilitate one’s betting experience.

William Hill

This bookmaker is also an extremely well-known one around the world. Not only does William Hill offer great odds for races in Ireland but it also provides ample chance for players who love the sport to check out other races and betting opportunities in the United Kingdom, the United States, and other countries that have big horse racing events. With a betting TV service and their own radio station, you are bound to have a wonderful betting experience whether the horse you are backing wins or not.


This British gambling company offers great odds and is also backed up by a Best Odds Guaranteed promotion. The wide variety of markets aids to further incentivize horse racing with this bookmaker. However, what makes them stand out is the insight provided on the form of particular horses and jockeys and even information about the track itself. Cash-out opportunities and other specials are also valid reasons why one could choose this bookmaker over others.

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