Horse Racing RPR

Many horse racing punters debate is Racing Post RPR ratings the best metric when studying the horse racing form for tipping horses.

Or should punters look more at the top speed ratings or official ratings of the horse?

The list of top horse racing tipsters all says they use RPR Ratings provided by the Racing Post as part of the selection process.

The Horse Racing RPR is a ranking scoring guide to help bettors evaluate their choice of value bets and make an informed decision. It is different from the OR, or the Official Rating.

In our Horse Racing RPR rating guide, we provide you with all the information needed to understand what RPR means and how it is different to other metrics.

What does RPR mean in horse racing?

The acronym RPR in horse racing stands for Racing Post Rating.

The RPR (Racing Post Rating) is the rating of horses by the private handicapper of the Racing Post.

The Racing Post Rating is adjusted depending on the weight of the horse.

The horse racing official rating is a different scoring system to RPRs as the OR (official rating) is assigned to a horse by the handicapper of the British Racing Authority.

Why Is The RPR Different From The OR In Horse Racing?

The main difference between RPR ratings and horse racing official ratings is the calculations are carried out by different organisations.

The British Horseracing Authority (responsible for the governance, administration and regulation of horseracing) employs a handicapper to assign ORs (official ratings) to horses. The BHA horse racing official ratings determine the weights horses carry in handicap races.

The Racing Post Rating (RPR) is calculated by a private handicapper who tends to consider the most recent performances of a horse. The scoring systems differ and both RPRs vs OR can vary in metrics.

Should I Use RPRs Or ORs?

When researching horse racing form it is advised to use both Racing Post Ratings (RPR) ratings and horse racing official ratings (OR) as part of the predictions.

The RPRs and ORs differ and being able to make calculated decisions on both the official handicapper’s opinion (OR) and the professional Racing Post handicapper (RPR) is great for punters to better-informed decisions.

Our leading horse racing tipster David Dooley said this when asked “Is OR better than RPR?”.

I use both the official rating and RPR rating to help choose my betting tips. If I had to choose a preferred metric I would choose RPR’s as the Racing Post scoring systems is highlights the ratings a horse has run up to on its last few runs

It is wise to consider several other factors that can influence what rating a horse will run to like ground conditions, trip and racecourse form as horses will only run to their highest rating under their optimal conditions.

Why RPRs Great Over Different Distances?

If a horse runs over varying distances RPRs are a much better metric than the (OR) horse racing official ratings.

A horse will have an optimal distance to compete at and the (OR) horse racing official rating is the same no matter what distance the horse runs over.

RPR’s take this change in the distance into account and may rate the horse in question much nearer the official rating it has achieved from previous efforts when running over that distance.

As an RPR rating can vary depending on the trip for the horse we believe this is much better than an official rating which remains the same even if a horse runs over an inadequate trip.

Why RPRs Need Analysis Over Different Going Conditions?

Horses have optimal conditions when it comes to ground conditions with some horses running better on firm ground and some relishing the soft ground going.

The RPR ratings are based on the horse’s recent runs and through comprehensive research, you might find the horse runs too many different ratings on soft ground to the ratings when encountering firm ground.

You still need to delve a lot deeper into the formbook to find the ratings of the horses depending on the ground conditions they are running in today.

Why RPRs Need Analysis At Different Racecourses?

Every racecourse is unique with some being right-handed and some being left-handed.

The gradients of different horse racing tracks can also differ greatly, with some being flat and others undulating tracks.

There is a well-known saying “horses for courses” and a horse can run much better depending on the racecourse conditions.

The RPR doesn’t tell you whether a horse will run to that rating at the racecourse so studying the formbook in important.

What Affects A Horse To Run To His Best RPR Rating?

Here are some reasons why horses might be affected in being able to run to their best RPR ratings:

  • Draw Bias – If the horse is drawn badly this can hugely affect the outcome of the race
  • Pace of the Race – slowly run races usually suit front runners whereas a fast-paced race benefits the closers
  • Trainers Form – horses can run better than normal when a trainer is in good form
  • Jockeys In Form – confidence in a jockey can help the horse to run better
  • Headgear Application – the use of cheekpieces, blinkers or visors can affect the chances of winning

Other important factors that can seek improvement in the horse’s form are wind operations or being gelded to improve.

What are the most accurate horse racing ratings?

The most accurate horse racing ratings are using a combination of Timeform, Racing Post (RPR) ratings and BHA horse racing (OR) official ratings.

Combining all three horse racing ratings allow you to make a decision based on different specialist opinions.

The 3 main raters of Timeform, BHA and Racing Post have a reputation for accuracy and their ratings are widely accepted as a definitive assessment of racing merit.


RPRs can be a good tool when it comes to trying to pick your daily selections.

The ratings are just the opinion of the Racing Post handicapper and should be used alongside other form guides.

Noting RPRs of a horse’s performances when faced with similar conditions will give you a much better indication of what rating a horse will achieve.

Professional gamblers spend a lot of time studying more than RPRs and understand other factors that need to be considered.

Horses are evaluated and given a fresh rating after each race and sports bettors love the RPR’s ranking guide.

Related Horse Race Statistics Posts

Here are all the articles related to horse racing stats for the UK and Irish races.

As the Founder of British Racecourses, I have a life-long passion for horse racing and have loved the sport as long as I can remember. I am also a keen racehorse owner and have worked in the gambling industry for several years. I set up British Racecourses with the desire to share my passion for racing with other like-minded people.