It’s hard to imagine cramming more into a single weekend. Good thing Monday is a holiday so we can spread things out a bit.
The only thing better than a three-day weekend is a four-day weekend, so we get things under way on Friday with a $6,500 Guaranteed game. It offers $3,000 to the winner and prizes down to fourth place. As per usual on Fridays, it’s a Pick & Pray, with nine contest races—Gulfstream’s 8th, 9th and 10th; Fair Grounds’s 7th, 8th and 9th; and Oaklawn’s 4th, 7th and 8th.
On Saturday, the top dog is our $50,000 Guaranteed event (Pick & Pray format) with $22,500 to the winner; and payouts down to 12th place. Entry fee is $495 with a limit of 112 entries.
We’ll also host a live-format Horse Player World Series full-package direct qualifier (with one in 25 winning an all-inclusive prize) and a Pick & Pray feeder to our Sunday The BIG One qualifier. Entry fees are $116 for the HPWS contest and $87 for the feeder to The BIG One.
On Saturday, we also welcome Keeneland back to the 2017 qualifying fold with a $69 qualifier to their April 22 $400 Spring Challenge where two NHC seats, one BCBC seat and cash will all be up for grabs.
And if all that wasn’t enough for one day, perhaps we can interest you in Saturday’s entry-only qualifier to the popular Wynn Handicapping Challenge, with one in 20 winning a $2,000 entry to the posh August event.
On Sunday, our marquee event is our 3-seat-guaranteed NHC qualifier for $165 (two entries maximum per person). If participation suffices (as it has in all our NHC qualifiers so far this year), this could well become a 5-seat NHC qualifier. But, again, three seats are guaranteed regardless of participation levels.
Sunday’s “co-feature” is our sixth qualifier of the year to The BIG One. One all-inclusive package (entry, travel, hotel & more) is guaranteed to be awarded, and entries ($390 each) are capped at 35, with up to five $300 consolation prizes also available. Last week, Steve Arrison became our latest qualifier, avenging a tough, last-race setback he suffered just seven days earlier at the hands of NHC Final Table contestant Michael Caposio. Perhaps more than any of our qualifiers, The BIG One contests seem to feature wild-and-woolly finishes on a weekly basis, so this will be a fun one to follow along with, even if you don’t happen to be participating.
Keeneland is right back in the mix on Sunday, this time with a qualifier to its April 23 Grade One Gamble where five NHC spots and five BCBC spots (plus lots of money) will be at stake on April 23 (the day after the Keeneland $400 Spring Challenge). Entries are $162 each with one in 25 winning a $3,000 entry fee (dining included) plus $500 for travel.
The robust Sunday schedule also includes another qualifier to The Stronach Group Ultimate Betting Challenge (March 11), where up to 10 NHC seats and five BCBC spots will be available for the winning. Entries to this are $232 apiece with one in 25 winning a $4,500 entry and $500 for your travel costs. This tourney sold briskly last weekend so reserve your spot early.
We also have a Sunday cash game with the prize remaining at the recently-increased level of $8,500 Guaranteed. $4,000 will go to the winner and cash prizes will be paid down to 5th. Entry is $190. And, of course, we’ll be hosting another $1,500 Guaranteed Exacta Box tournament on Sunday for $54 ($600 to the victor).
Last but not least, an entry-only qualifier to the Horse Player World Series ($1,500 value) is on tap Sunday. Entry costs $87 with one in 20 winning a seat.
On Monday, we have two additional brick-and-mortar tourneys making their 2017 debuts on the HorseTourneys schedule.
First, there’s the June 3 Monmouth Park Pick Your Prize tournament where up to 13 NHC spots and four BCBC will be awarded. This qualifier costs $116 with one entrant per 25 receiving a $2,000 entry plus $500 for travel
Then we say hello once again to Hawthorne with a qualifier to the Hawthorne Spring NHC tourneys on March 24-25. The Hawthorne weekend goes as two separate one-day tourneys with a $400 live bankroll (no entry fee) required each day. Winners of our qualifier (one per just 15 entries at $62 per entry) will receive $800 in bankroll dough—enough to get you action on both days. Once there at Hawthorne, you could win one (or more) of four NHC seats, two Canterbury seats or six Woodbine seats.
We’ll round out Presidents Day with another entry-only Horse Player World Series qualfier, and a $5,000 tourney with $3,000 to the winner and money down to fourth place. Entry to our $5,000 game is $185.
Presidents Day weekend is always extra fun in that there are no presents to buy or any real traveling to do. So why not sign an executive order to yourself mandating participation in a tourney or two? We also have low-cost feeders available to nearly all of the above. Win or lose, we think you’ll have a great time, all from the comfort and convenience of your own Oval Office.