Prepare for the Kentucky Derby with these thoroughbred iPhone apps

May 2, 2011
Misc

Apple’s clichéd “there’s an app for that” slogan may make some of you cringe, but it’s as much a fact as it is a slogan. Take horse racing for instance. It’s a sport that may not exactly get as much attention as baseball, football and soccer, but one that is nonetheless reasonably well represented in […]

Apple’s clichéd “there’s an app for that” slogan may make some of you cringe, but it’s as much a fact as it is a slogan. Take horse racing for instance. It’s a sport that may not exactly get as much attention as baseball, football and soccer, but one that is nonetheless reasonably well represented in the App Store. And now that the Triple Crown is upon us, what better time to review the best apps the sport has to offer? From betting apps to those that guide you around the prestigious Churchill Downs, these apps will bring the Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports (and more) to your iPhone.

Kentucky Derby

The official app of horse racing’s most prestigious event, Kentucky Derby may not unquestionably be the sport’s top app, but it’s at least near the top of the list. The free app may be the most popular of all horse racing apps, making the Top 20 of the App Store’s free sports list within a week of its release. Among the app’s virtues are its slick design and tons of information, including horse bios, betting info and event schedule. There’s also a video section, and an odd ‘game’ section that features trivia and a sing-a-long. A party-planning feature and a wealth of information about the event and track itself make this your one-stop app for all things Kentucky Derby. There could be some more streamlining here, but this free beauty will be enjoyed by most racing fans, and is hopefully a sign of similar Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes apps to come.

One Click Pony

You may think that horse racing apps would have the cleverest names, though aside from e-ponies.com’s One Click Pony ($9.99) results are pretty disappointing. This app boasts a wealth of betting information from 40 tracks, including Churchill Downs and Belmont Park. Users simply select a track and choose from a number of betting options, such as ‘best bet to win’ or ‘long shot,’ and One Click Pony spits out the horse for you. While it takes more than just one click, using the app is incredibly simple, with only a basic knowledge of betting terms required to dive right into the app. The big downside is the hefty price tag, though there is a lite version available and once you buy the app you have everything you need, there are no in-app purchases involved.

Horse Racing Live

Kentucky Derby may be vying to be the most popular horse racing app, but it will never be the most talked about – that distinction goes to one of iApp Ventures many releases, Horse Racing Live. First things first, this is a simple, free app with news from all over the horse racing world. That said, it’s only a news feed, and the app could benefit from including results and schedules. Furthermore, the latest version has received a number of complaints about bugs, most notably a problem linking to full online articles. Assuming the kinks are worked out, Horse Racing Live is fine given that it’s free, but it’s also the kind of app that will constantly leave you thinking it could be so much more.

Virtual Horse Racing 3D

There’s no way to describe Virtual Horse Racing 3D ($1.99), other than unique. Not only is it the rare horse racing game available for iOS devices, but it’s also the rare sports simulation game in the App Store. The main part of the game is in placing your bets, with the challenge being sifting through ratings and stats for eight horses and deciding who will win what. After bets are placed a simulated race takes place, and though you have no control the graphics are impressive and smooth. Put everything together, and Virtual Horse Racing 3D is a surprisingly compelling game that could easily make the jump to addictive for horse racing fans. A free version is available and recommended, though know that to get the full experience – including different tracks and drastically improved betting options – you’ll have to shell out the two bucks for the full version.

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