Greyhound racing: what the colored jackets mean
The typical greyhound race in the UK consists of six dogs. Each dog is identified by the colored jacket he wears for the race. The color indicates its starting position, in other words the trap number it runs from, and helps you identify the dogs as they run. Colors are standard so familiarize yourself with them for your night at the greyhounds helpful. Let’s take a look at them.
The dog always uses the red cat from trap one. This is the starting position closest to the inner rail. These animals generally have a preference for running on the inside of the track and are known to race goers as “railers.” Generally, a guardrail requires a good burst of initial speed to maintain its position in the first corner and not be rejected by the opposition.
The blue jacket is always worn by the dog from trap two on. This trap is also generally favored by dog trackers looking to get to the railing in front of the greyhound in trap one.
The white jacket is always worn by the animal from trap three and the black jacket is always worn by the greyhound that watches from trip four. These starting positions are generally favored by greyhounds who have a natural preference for running in the middle of the track, as indicated by the notation (M) next to their name on the race card.
The orange jacket is always worn by the greyhound from trap five and the black and white striped jacket by the greyhound from trap six. These gaze positions are generally favored by greyhounds who have a natural preference for running to the wide outside of the track as indicated by the notation (W) next to their name on the race card. A potential advantage of the wide run is that frequent skirmishes on the first turn can be avoided.
The position of the trap makes all the difference and should be taken into account when looking for betting opportunities. A greyhound left out of position can be detrimental to his chances, although normally the race director takes into account the preference of traps for graduated races and an open runner will not be placed in an inside trap and vice versa.
This is to avoid problems when running. For example, if a greyhound, who is normally a wide runner, were placed in trap one, their natural instinct would be to look for the outside railing and get out of the traps. This could cause interference with other dogs on the run.
It can be a fun night out and it doesn’t have to be ruined as admission is inexpensive. Many race goers like to enjoy a meal while watching the races from the comfort of the restaurant. A few minutes to familiarize yourself with the different colored jackets, the starting position, and whether your chosen greyhound has a strong preference for the trap position can help you enjoy spending a night at greyhound racing.