Claiming races & Photo Finish Live

Third Time Dev
3 min readFeb 24, 2022


Hello there fellow horse racing enthusiasts! Welcome to yet another developer update, this time here on Medium. Today, we wanted to spend a little bit of time talking about a topic that is not well known (even in the horse racing industry) yet extremely important — CLAIMING RACES!

Maybe you are interested in joining the Photo Finish Live ecosystem when the racing starts, but you don’t yet have a horse? Or maybe you are a bit hesitant to pick up a Generation Zero Ticket off of the marketplaces because of the cost…

Well, good news, Claiming Races might be just the thing for you!

In horse racing, a claiming race is a race in which the horses are typically for sale:

According to the Thoroughbred Times Racing Almanac, roughly 62.7 percent of races in America were either claiming or maiden claiming races in 2015.

Sounds pretty important, right? Well, you guessed it, CLAIMING RACES ARE IN PHOTO FINISH LIVE!

Here’s how it works: the prices for the horses will be set when the races are scheduled, and when the race is locked, any single horse is available for bidding. If you are looking to stake a claim on a horse (i.e. buy it), you could look at the schedule, find upcoming claiming races, research and find the horse(s) you like, and place a bid. If you so choose, you could tune into the race, watch your desired horse in action, and hopefully find it in your stables upon the conclusion.

If multiple people bid on the same horse, the owner of the horse is just determined via a random draw.

You may ask “what are the pros and cons of obtaining a horse through a claiming race as opposed to buying one from the in-game Marketplace?” The most obvious pro and con are:

PRO — They’re likely going to be cheaper than most Marketplace horses.

CON — Owners don’t typically put their best horses up for claiming races.

In addition, the claiming races help ensure fairness in the game. This is a big deal, and something we’re very proud to have in Photo Finish Live. It is a tale as old as time where gamers take their high level characters (in this case horse) and play down a level or ‘tank’ in order to beat up on under-matched opponents. In our game, the claiming races prevent that because someone could buy your horse out from under you!

More questions you may ask:

“If I buy a horse during a claiming race, do I also get the prize money if the horse wins?”

- No, the original owner of the horse is entitled to whatever winnings come from the claiming race.

“Have any good horses actually been bought in a claiming race?”

- Yes! A great example is Palace, a beautiful horse who was bought in a claiming race in 2012 for $20,000, and then went on to have a great career, earning $1,586,550 in winnings, and placing in the top 3 in 24 of his 30 career races!


The legendary Seabiscuit was also run in THREE $2,500 claiming races but was never claimed!

Photo from 1940 of a Tobey Maguire impersonator

“Do I have to race my horse in claiming races?”

- Not at all! Claiming races are for owners racing for lower stakes while being ok with selling the horse in the process. You can choose to never enter a claiming race if you don’t want to.

Claiming races in real life are a great way for newcomers to the sport to enter the ecosystem, and they will take the same role in Photo Finish Live. By running claiming races, we hope to encourage even people with limited budgets to join the game and have fun racing!

See you on the track!

- Third Time Team



Third Time Dev

Game development studio with many years in AAA, mobile, and F2P. Crypto enthusiasts. Big fans of Unity.