horses for courses

horses for courses

An expression indicating that people should be chosen for jobs or roles based on their particular experience, strengths, or skill set. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. Horses for courses. You can't expect James to take to rugby straight away—he's a cricket player.
See also: course, horse
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

horses for courses

BRITISH
People use horses for courses to mean that people and things have different qualities and skills and so are suitable in different situations. Mr Franks said that it was a question of horses for courses and Len Freeman would concentrate on the advertising side of the business. It's horses for courses. We have to use different ways of working, at different speeds, for different types of decisions. Note: Horses for courses is also used before nouns to talk about a situation where people or things are chosen because of the particular qualities or skills that they have. Some workers are better at operating the machines than others. So you have a horses for courses situation. Note: Some horses are especially suited to particular kinds of races or conditions.
See also: course, horse
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

horses for courses

different people are suited to different things or situations.
The earliest recorded instance of this expression, in A. E. T. Watson's Turf ( 1891 ), suggests its origin: ‘A familiar phrase on the turf is “horses for courses”…the Brighton Course is very like Epsom, and horses that win at one meeting often win at the other’.
1989 Guardian It's a question of horses for courses, finding the best route forward and adopting the practices to fit that rather than bulldozing your way through without perhaps realising the wider environment in which this needs to work.
See also: course, horse
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

ˌhorses for ˈcourses

(British English) people or things should only be used for the purpose which they are most suitable for: I think Johnson would be much better for this job. It’s a question of horses for courses.
This expression refers to the fact that horses race better on a track that suits them.
See also: course, horse
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
However, we need to be careful not to put too much emphasis on the term 'horses for courses' and remember we back horses NOT courses.
Never mind horses for courses. This week is all about men with horses for courses.
"Owen has that sturdiness that brings confidence to the boys around him, but George has got those subtle touches that show he is aware how to play different situations." Wilkinson suggests head coach Stuart Lancaster will adopt a 'horses for courses' approach - and also use the players in a 12/10 axis.
"Dan is knocking on the door and giving me that push, and we can use a 'horses for courses' policy, where Dan can start if we need that little bit more physicality and tempo.
West Brom v Stoke City HOME 11/8 DRAW 9/4 AWAY 5/2 IF YOU like horses for courses (and it is Cheltenham week) Stoke are unbeaten v West Brom in five Premier League games over the last three seasons (W3 D2).
WARWICKSHIRE'S selectors are pondering the merits of the "horses for courses" theory before naming the XI to face in-form Somerset in the championship, starting at Edgbaston tomorrow.
It's horses for courses with this snuggly sweater, PS30 from The Vestry (Vestryonline.com) | Pony up...
The National is my favourite event on the racing calendar and I have to say it is all about horses for courses.
"For the playing XI, I will choose horses for courses. In a bilateral game, just for example, say if it is a five-match series, we can lose a few up front and then go in with your stronger side or perfect side.
Hereafter it might need to rethink its bowling strategy by choosing horses for courses. Previously it was able to play the same blokes in all conditions.
Horses For Courses is a DiY gem, and I mean that very much as a compliment not patronising in any way.
YET again, the folly of 'horses for courses' is rearing its ugly head in the statutory education sector as the Government reveals its plans for raising the school leaving age to 18.
However, if we want to get anything from the game against Arsenal we can't play the same way: the only way to get anything from them is to play like Bolton and get in and amongst them and don't give them time on the ball, otherwise we'll get beaten 4-0 - it's horses for courses!
It's all about horses for courses in the Third Division and Swansea City have certainly nabbed themselves a player capable of jumping a few footballing hurdles next season.
Horses for courses. The platform is engineered so that it can create vehicles with a mass of up to 4,000 lb., a wheel-base ranging from 105.3 to 112.3 in.; front-wheel and all-wheel drive; and a windshield pillar that can move a range of four inches.