Welcome to Horse Racing Park.  This guide is meant to explain how various functions in the game work and how you can use them.  It is not meant to offer significant strategies and other similar information. which is gained by experience and asking other players.  We will get into this more later on in this guide.  Also, sometimes we will refer you to the rules section under the “help” pull down menu.  We will not address fees in this guide, such as purchasing new horses, stable fees, etc…  All fees are located under the help menu at the bottom of that menu and it is recommended that you read that section specifically.  You should use the user guide and the rules section in order to gain as much information as possible.  And do refer to either document often as you will continually pick up some new information as you learn about this game.

One thing that will be required from you at the start is PATIENCE.  In real life, if you purchased horses to start a new stable, it could take months or even years before you see results.  Here, you will see results much sooner. This is a game based to some degree on skill that will in all likelihood take some time to master. Like learning any new game, it takes time.  Many of our players have been with us for years – and many, like yourself are new.  Even after reading this guide, you will most likely still have many questions.  This is to be expected.  By using this guide along with the rules, you will find yourself racing against people from all over the world that meet here to race.  And there is nothing like winning races as the owner and trainer of your own virtual racehorse.

When you start, the free horses you received may or may not have much ability (It is strongly recommended that you become a “verified” stable before creating your free horses as the abilities of them will be better if you do).  This will be for you to find out through a combination of workouts and races.  It is suggested that you also claim one or more horses (to be discussed below) so that you may own a horse ready to run sooner than a new horse.  New horses take a little time to develop, and by owning a claimer you may enter a horse in a race immediately.

Remember to have fun and enjoy – if you are struggling or getting frustrated at the beginning, this is completely typical; let us know if you are having difficulties and also feel free to post in our forums – more about that below.  There is much to learn so let’s get started:

Logging on and getting started

Once you have created your user account, take a look at the pull-down menus.  Under “My account”, you will see a category called “vouchers.”  Click this and you can redeem your vouchers.   At this point, you may choose a name for your horse now, or you may wait. The “change name” button will remain on the horse until you name it.  But the horse must be named prior to its being entered into a race at a track. 

Your new horses will be created on your farm.  You automatically receive a free farm upon joining.  Your horses, once created, will be placed on your farm.  If you would like to see more information about the horse you received, click on the horse and you will observe the following:

Nominate, Train, Accessories, Relocate, Confirmation, View foals; If you scroll down you will see some options relating to workouts, races, view meters, retire and add to watch list.  Below that you will see nominations and entries; these will be blank unless you have entered the horse in a race.

Stable page

There are 3 options of views.  Many of them are similar but they all contain different information.  To change the view, there are three options on the top right of the page.  Whichever view you choose, it will be saved for the next time you log-in. 

The horses’ names are listed first, RC (race coming up in the number of days), sex, age, state it was bred in, condition, stamina and consistency meters (more on that in a bit), distance (if trying to shorten up or have run longer), and LR and LW (last race and last work).  If you see the location of the horse is in red, it means the horse has been entered into a race at a track and it is not at that track at this moment (more on that later).  There are some comments fields, and fields telling you if the horse is on the farm in training mode or in standard mode (race mode).  These things will be discussed in detail later on.

Scroll down a bit and you will also see horses nominated for future races (when you have some).  Once you have nominated a horse, you will see something that looks like this:  8/10{7}.  This means there are eight horses entered in the race with a maximum field size of 10.  And there are 7 owners in the race, so someone has entered two horses from one stable.  When the nominations to a race close and the field size exceeds the maximum field size, heres how it draws:  For 3 & up, its first come first served.  For 2 yo maiden races, the horses with the oldest dates last raced (or date created for new horses) get selected first.  In all non-stakes races, any owner with two or more entries is only allowed one entry if the field exceeds the maximum.  An “also eligible” list will be created from the rest of the horses.  In the event of a scratch, the next horse in line will automatically get entered into the race.  If the field exceeds 16, a second race will automatically be created to allow more horses to race.  

Further down, you will see horses entered into races, pending claims, and recent races.  If you click a recent race, you will notice some blue circles.  Click them and you will be able to watch the race.  Try them all, and see which view you like best.


Once your new horse is on the farm, it’s time for its first workout.  Click the “train” button and you will see two options.  The top option is to train.  If you choose training options, the pull down menu has various options.  For now, there is no need to train your horse.  So let’s move on to the timed work options.  As you can see, there are pull-down menus for various items.  If you are on the farm, you must use trainer as there are no jockeys on farms, only at racetracks that are currently running (note:  if you ship to a track not currently holding a meeting, there will not be any jockeys available there either). Select a distance and a surface you would like to work (you may have a favorite distance to work, or you may ask others in the forums their opinions on preferred distances).  Until you get more accustomed to the game, there is no need to change any of the other items. Click “work” – you will get a warning that this work is irreversible (there are no “do -overs” after this point).  – If you chose to watch the work, then the screen will show the workout.  After the work, you will notice that the menu that comes up after the work will show details of all works.  As it was on the farm, it will show the condition of the track, the date, the distance, the time, and it will end with “B.”  All works on the farm will always be B (breezing).  Later on, if you work at a track with a jockey, the work will show an “H” (handily).  The difference is that in a breeze, the horse is not asked to run as hard compared to when a jockey is up.  Therefore, breezes with the same time as a handily work under identical conditions on the same day are typically superior when compared.  And breezes on a farm are also typically superior to breezes of the same time at a racetrack.

Training your horse at a racetrack

In order to move your horse to a racetrack, click on the “relocate” button.  You will see all of the tracks.  Choose the one you want to ship to.  (Note:  if your farm is in WV, you may choose MNR and your horse will arrive the same day; its meters will read 0/0/X indicating immediate arrival time at that track)  If you choose another track, you will see some numbers, such as AP (1/1/2).  This means you can ship your horse overnight to Arlington Park, but the stamina meter (explained below) will take what amounts to a double stamina hit in a day.  Alternatively, you may select “slow transit” with the checkbox and your horse will arrive at the track in 2 days, but without the “double” stamina hit; instead, the meters will move normally.


After you work your horse, you will notice that the meters will have moved.  There are four meters located on the top left of the horse:  Condition, stamina, consistency and distance. 

Condition meter:  Upon working your horse for the first time, the meter will become black with a percentage of 110%.   This is telling you the horse is as sharp as he can be, though not necessarily where you would want the meter to be when racing (will be discussed later).  Every day, this meter will move downwards until he is raced, worked, or trained at which point the meter will move back up.  In order to get a “maximum effort” out of your horse, the meter needs to be green.  This means a percentage between 95 and 105.  After a few days have passed, you may click on the “view meters” button and see how the meters move on conditions for this particular horse – remember, all horses are different.  Typical movement is 2-3 downwards each day, sometimes 4-5 for a one or two year old.  Without any works, races or training, this meter will continue going down.  It will go up once a workout, train or race occurs.

Stamina meter:  After the work, you will notice that this meter is black and is probably near 75.  This is telling you your horse requires some rest.  This meter will move up during maintenance (which is 3-6 AM EST every day).  Typically, a horse will recover anywhere from 7 to 10 every day, though a few may change more or less.  Again, click on the “view meters” to see how it moves.  This meter is the opposite of the condition meter.  It moves up every day if there are no works, trains or races.  In order to get a “maximum effort” out of your horse, the meter needs to be green.  This means a percentage between 95 and 105.  Notice that contrary to the condition meter, this meter moves up daily with inactivity.  

Often in the forums, you will hear other players saying they raced their horse “green-green.”  They are referring to the condition and stamina meters.

Consistency meter:  After working your horse once, you will notice a red arrow pointing to the left of the 0.   This means that your horse’s consistency will be going down during maintenance.  It can go down to -5; alternatively the highest the meter can rise to is +5.  You will also notice a number in parenthesis (1).  This means you have 1 timed work and/or races in the past 30 days.  You will need to have 2 timed works or races for the red arrow to turn green and face the other direction.  This is the only way you can get the consistency meter to rise.  When racing or timed works, you will get a maximum/consistent performance by having the meter at +5.  Generally speaking, it is best for you to have your horse at the maximum consistency (+5).   See the rules section for additional information about this.  If you exceed 4 works/races in a 30 day period, the meter will not move up; at 5, it will freeze the meter; at 6 or more, it will move the meter down.  There is one exception to this – read below about “training mode.”

Distance meter:  This tells you if the horse is preparing to run longer or shorter distances.  If you work six furlongs or greater, you will see a “1L”; conversely, if you work two or three furlongs, you will see a “1S.”  Feel free to refer to the rules section for more discussion.  It is possible you may not really use this meter other than informational purposes.  Some players do not use this meter, while others use it occasionally.

Training mode  

If you keep your horse on the farm, it is advantageous to put your horse in training mode.  To do this, check the “training mode” button on the front stable page and then choose “update stable” at the bottom.  Training mode will accomplish a few things for you.  It will freeze the condition and stamina meters at 100 each once they get to that point.  And horses will not move “down” on their consistency (even if the red arrow if pointing down).  However, unless the green arrow is pointing right, it will not go up either.   Many players prefer to use this option when their horses are located on the farm because the meters will always automatically adjust to 100-100 (condition-stamina).  This makes things a lot easier when you want to work your horses.

Racing your horse   

In order to enter a race, you must have a minimum of 1 timed work at any racetrack in the last 90 days prior to the race (It does not matter if the workout is with the trainer or jockey).  The first thing you will want to do is notice where your horse’s meters are.  In some circumstances, you may not be able to get the condition and the stamina meters green on the day of the race.  Although this guide is not meant to offer advanced techniques and strategies, in the interest of getting you started, we will mention several options below that can have you accomplish this goal.  Before you nominate any horse, be aware of the option that was preset for you under “my account.”  There is an option set for “track checking” that is on.  This means you can only nominate your horse if your horse is actually located at that track when you nominate.  If you prefer, you make reset this option for “off” and you will be free to nominate your horse to any racetrack regardless of where your horse is located.  If you choose to turn this option off, it is your responsibility to make sure your horse is at the track on the day of the race.  If your horse is not at the track at least one hour prior to the race, it will be automatically scratched and your nomination fee forfeited.

If you choose the button “nominate” you will see a host of options.  Here is what they mean:

Track – choose from specific track, a pay track, all tracks, MNR (free track), or by level.  But remember, in order to choose a pay track you must be a verified pay stable (see rules section).  Otherwise, MNR will likely be your track.

State – you may choose a state to run in; but most likely leave this alone (all).

Minimum and maximum distances – choose distances to your liking; you may look inside your horse’s conformation to get an idea of the distances (route or sprint) that your horse may like.  Or you can also work your horse over varying distances and surfaces to see what they like best; until you gain experience, either look at other horses in the game or ask for help in the “ask the expert section” (more on that later) as to what are considered good works for your horse and an indication as to ability.

Surface – choose turf, dirt or all

Sex – automatic; unless you want to race a female against a male (generally not recommended)

Age – if you select all, this means whatever race in which your horse is eligible will show up.

Race type – there are various options, or you may choose all.  However, if you are entering a maiden, you may choose a specific type of maiden race or choose “all maidens.”  Once your horse wins a maiden race, you may choose nw2l (non winners of 2 lifetime).  This is a race that is restricted to horses that have only won one race lifetime and you may find the competition easier than a nw3l (non-winners of 3 lifetime) or a non-restricted/open race.

Statebred – use this option if you are looking for races in the state in which your horse was bred (if WV for example, then enter this to see all races for that state)

Bonus – similar to above; probably not needed to use this if you use state-bred function above.

And if you leave any of these alone, they will default to “all.”

You may also choose a date.  If you want to see all races that meet your requested criteria from a certain date onward, click the date and only races on or after that date will be shown.

When completed with your criteria, hit the “filter” button and all races meeting your criterion requested will be displayed.

Once you find your race, select “nominate horse” and you can pick 3 jockey choices – the percentage next to each represents the percentage fee they will receive if your horse is in a pay race and runs first through fourth.  (It is assumed that the higher fee jockeys are generally better skilled riders than lower percentage jockeys) For now, don’t change any of the other options until you learn more about this game.  You will also be charged the nomination fee at this time if you nominate for a pay race. 

Now that you have nominated your horse, you need to plan so you can have the horse in the best possible condition when the horse races. 

Below are five possible options that you may want to consider to have your horse in top condition.

Option 1:  Keep your horse at the track you intend to race.  You may use the standard train to maintain your meters at the correct levels until race day.  Some trainers will work out their horses 3-5 days before the race to allow the meters to adjust to “green-green” but this is the most difficult way.

Option 2:  Keep your horses on the farm in training mode. If the horses condition meters for your horse (as noted above) move slowly (mostly 2 per day, typically) do a train on your horse 10 days before the race at the farm; then ship to the racetrack.  If the consistency meter moves more quickly (3,2,3,2 for the last four movements), you will need to ship 9 days prior to the race.  Two year olds may only need be shipped 7 or 8 days before the race depending on their meters, but some may require 9 days or more.  Then on race day, your meters will likely be 88-110.  On race day morning you will need to perform a standard train for the horse and the meters will be “green-green” come race time, near 100-100 (One thing to bear in mind:  races “lock” 1 hour prior to post time; make sure you perform this train on race day more than 1 hour before the race). 

Option 3:  Same as option 2 above except you ship out to the track 4-6 days early.  Depending on the consistency meter movement, (3,2,3,2)  you will need to ship five days prior to the race; (3,2,2,2 or similar, six days prior; (4,3,3,3 or similar) 4 days prior.  Then, on race day do a standard train (same as option 2).

Option 4:  Ship from the farm to a nearby track the day of the race.  Many people do this, and even though the game claims there is a penalty for the consistency meter, it simply is not true in our experience. 

Option 5:  If the track you are shipping to says 1,1,2, if you ship from your farm when the horse is 100-100 (condition-consistency), it will arrive the next day green-green ready to race.  However, you must NOT ship slow transit.

After the race:

You may do a number of things.  If you want, you can immediately nominate your horse for another race and start the process over.  Or, you may elect to ship back to the farm (if you do, consider using training mode on the horse so the meters will freeze at 100-100 (condition-consistency).  You may also want to begin testing for accessories (adds).  Although you may test the adds before the horse races, it is recommended you test the adds after they have had at least one race as horse’s works are generally more consistent after they have raced.

Testing the Accessories

You may now want to test for accessories for your new horse.  Before you start, you should consider getting a work on the horse after the race when the consistency meter if at +5.  Most (but not all) horses will improve immediately after their first race; some may take more time to improve.  Use this first workout after the race as a “baseline” work and then you can test the accessories under identical surfaces and conditions.  If you change the surface or distance during the process of testing the accessories or the consistency meter is not at +5, you may not get an accurate read if your horse likes the various accessories.  Also, especially for 2 year olds, the “baseline” work can often not be representative of the horse at times.  2 year olds can be highly inconsistent with their works.  As they age and race more, they will likely become more consistent in their works.  So beware of assuming that your “baseline” work or works with adds are always accurate. 

When you start testing, test them one at a time (in any order). If a horse improves over his “baseline” work, then the horse probably likes the accessory and you should consider keeping the accessory.  If the horse stays the same or runs slower, the accessory probably doesn’t help and it should most likely be removed.  Continue testing all four accessories (Blinkers, Shadow roll, Lasix and Bute) and see which combinations have your horse work the fastest.  You may also find none of these accessories makes your horse any faster.  As newer horses are still developing, it is possible a workout that appears faster could be due to the horse developing, so you may want to re-test the accessories at a later date to make sure of the accessories your horse likes (Note:  if you claim a horse and notice the accessories were not tested or were not tested in a manner you would have, you may want to re-test the accessories for that particular horse).

Once you have completed testing the accessories, you may want to test for turf (or conversely if you have been training on turf, try dirt).  You may also want to see how your horse runs at a distance.  Try working at a mile and see how the horse does.  Keep in mind that turf times in the game are better than dirt times, so your horse would need to be faster on turf in order to be considered a “turf” horse.  Since ages of horses impacts the maturity of all horses, workout times may vary widely.  Experience will tell you what is considered good workout times for each age group, you may look under “statistics” or you may “ask the experts” in the forums for their opinions.

On male horses, you have one other accessory you may try – gelding the horse.  This is irreversible and once done, the horse may never be used for breeding purposes.  Most male horses in the game are not used for breeding purposes; however, you may want to check the bloodlines first before doing this (Note:  the bloodlines page shows the average earnings index aka AEI for all studs – anything over 1.00 per race is considered good in the game).  If you choose to geld, you may find that the horse will go faster.  For some horses, there is no change and for a few others, they will go slower.  Gelding offers no guarantees, however some horses may never reach their true abilities unless gelded.  It is NOT recommended that you geld your horse in the middle of testing the accessories – wait until you are done.  Also, the first race/work after a geld does not always show the full affects of the geld.  Also, gelding horses ages four and up often does nothing.

Once you have completed the accessory testing, you may want to enter your horse in a race again.  Just follow the directions above on how to nominate your horse.

Claiming a horse

Another way to get a horse is to claim one from another barn.  It is strongly encouraged that you do so in order to study and learn what the previous owner did with the horse (It is advisable to take a horse from one of the better percentage trainers for your first one as lower percentage trainers may make more mistakes with their horses).  On the top menu, click on racing, then select a day.  Feel free to look at and use any of the filters.  If you choose all races for the day, you will see which races are claiming races.  If you click on “form” you can see all of the horses entered as well as their most recent races and workouts.  If you see a horse you would like to claim, go back to the entry page and click on the “c” on the right of the horse.  You may put in a claim anytime up until post time.  Once the race is official, you will receive the horse at the track the horse was running.  You may then enter the horse in another race, leave the horse at the track, or return the horse to the farm.   If more than one claim is put in on a horse, a drawing is held and losing claimants will receive a full refund.

Creating new horses

There are two way to create new horses:  You may create one directly from Horse Racing Park (Auto-generated or “AG” for short), or you may breed yourself (homebreds).

If you buy directly from Horse Racing Park, go to the drop down menu under racing and click “purchase horse.”  You will be able to name the horse (or you may wait), you may choose the sex, the age and you may choose to pay the breeders cup fee ($1) to make the horse eligible for those races.  The horse will be placed on your farm.  You may now follow the instructions above on “training.”

In order to breed (also, there is more on breeding in the pages that follow) your own horse, you may match up any mare and stud that is eligible.  Since you have not “retired” any of your horses at this point, you will need to lease a mare and a stud.  If you click “breeding” on the pull down menu of stables, you will see this option.  The first think you must do is to lease a broodmare.  The prices will be shown next to each mare.  After you select the mare you wish to lease, you will be charged the fee.  The easiest way to select a stud is to go to the “quick match” button.  You may select your mare, and then the studs will come up with prices.  Alternatively, you may also review all available before you choose a stud.  Once you choose a stud, you will be charged the fee, you may select “breed” and you will get a new horse delivered to your farm in minutes – as long as you are breeding for the current quarter.  If you breed for a future quarter (up to 2 weeks before the actual start, the 1st of the following month) your new horse will be delivered to you on the 1st of the next month.  If you do this in error, you can cancel out the breeding and start over.  If you are breeding for the current quarter, once you confirm the match you may not cancel it.

Just as in real life, paying a premium for good bloodlines does not guarantee a good foal.  So we recommend you start off slowly in the breeding area until you learn more about it and the game.  You may want to create more AG’s if you wish to create horses at the start as there is nothing to research when doing so.  However, most of the top horses in the game are not AG’s, but homebreds for your information. 

Private Sales

Under the stables menu, you will see private sales.  You may buy horses directly from other stables by selecting “buy horses.”  You may filter by age, stable name or any other number of items.  You may put in a “claim” for any horses.  You may also sell horses you own by selecting the “sell horses.”  We recommend you take some time before doing either and familiarize yourself with the racing side of the game first.  Often new players overpay for horses, stallions and breeding mares without actually knowing true worth.  If you have made friends with other stables here, sometimes its best to ask an opinion before spending hundreds of dollars on a horse.  Most stables here are standup people and would offer an honest opinion.

You may also sell in private sales as well.  The commissions taken by HRP can be less so this is a way to perhaps save some fees.  But again, we recommend caution at the start as you may not know the true value of horses.

 Horse lives and retiring a horse

If a horse’s abilities deteriorate, you have several options:  race the horse at lower levels against easier competition, rest the horse on your farm for a period of time, sell the horse in an auction, or retire them.  At some point in all horse’s careers, their abilities will deteriorate to the point that they are no longer competitive.   For geldings, this is the end of the road and they will be deactivated from the game.  There is a box at the bottom of each horse “retire.”  Choose this if you would like to retire the horse.  For colts and fillies/mares, you have the option of retiring them (for future breeding) or deactivating them.  Once retired, horses may never be made active to race again.

Horse conformations

If you click on your horse and choose the button “conformation” you can see the conformation of your horse.  There is a detailed description of all characteristics shown along with an outline defining the terms and what the potential implications are for each.  You may inspect any horse’s conformation in the game at any time.  It is highly recommended that you read through the entire outline to gain knowledge of the characteristics.  We suggest you inspect a few of the top horses in the game to see their conformations as well.

Breeding your own horses

You may breed any horse that is at least 3 ½ years old and has been retired.  You may also use the “quick match” function to match your horses.  Again, we suggest you not begin breeding on your own until you understand more about the racing part of the game as this may influence your breeding choices.  Therefore, we will not go into any more breeding details at this time.  But feel free to look around the breeding side of the game to get familiar with it.

Speed ratings

Many players find it helpful to buy the speed ratings (SRF).  These numbers combine times and track variances to come up with an adjusted number.  Normally, a higher SRF number represents a better race.  However, track level (low, medium and high) as well as track conditions and surfaces can affect this number.  Therefore, you should use these numbers as a guideline only.  You may purchase this under the stable pull-down menu, “purchase SRF.”  Although you have several options, we recommend the three month subscription since you get 3 free horse vouchers with your subscription.


There are various forums under the pull-down menu of community.  Click on any forum that is of interest to you.  We strongly encourage you to post questions in the “Ask the Experts” section.  Although not authoritative, you will receive opinions and information from other players.

Pull down menus

We recommend you look through all of the pull-down menus.  You will find a variety of items that may be of interest to you.  Take some time and look through the different features.  This site is loaded with much statistical information. 

After your horse races

It is very typical for a new horse to lose his first race on the racetrack and not run close to it’s potential.  Horses improve with experience; some will also improve with age.  If you have raced your horse several times and it is losing (especially by 5-10 lengths or more) you may need to “drop” the horse into a softer spot.  Or you may rest the horse for a period of time and see if the horse improves with the passing of time.

Your silks   

You may design your own silks. Under “my account” you will see silk template hat template and silk editor.  The templates may be downloaded and can be used with Microsoft “paint” program.  Or you may use the silk editor in the game and create your own silks.  You will have 14 days to edit and save your choices.  At a future point, if you should want to change your silks, send us an email and we will give you 14 days to edit and save your silks then.

Site mailing other players

Any player may email any other player in the game at any time.  If you choose not to receive emails from a specific player or any players, click on your mailbox and choose “options” (under folders).  You have the option of checking the box for all users or you may enter the names of the stables you choose not to receive emails from.

Final thoughts

This user guide is meant to bring you up to speed on the general nuances of the game that the rules do not offer.  It is far from being all-encompassing and does not offer much in the way of strategies.  With experience, you will understand better about horse placement in races, learning about workouts, other players and their tendencies, and what horses are really worth – it is recommended you exercise some caution before making any expensive purchases. 

It is not uncommon for players to not win with their first 20 or 30 starters.  And first time horses that start rarely win here either. 

Once every quarter, there is a silent auction in which you may buy/sell as many horses as you would like. This is an excellent way to expand your stable. There are also private sales and people are free to make offers on horses within the game.  Until you learn what horses are worth, caution is recommended.

And again, don’t feel discouraged if you don’t succeed at the very beginning.  If you stick to it, you will improve.  If you look at some of the other players, you will likely see improvement in their win percentages after their first year – and most of them did not have the benefit of this guide.

And whatever level you decide to play is up to you – free tracks and/or pay tracks. 

Good luck to all!

Categories: FEATURED STORIES, Racing Information

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