The Breeders’ Cup may be in our rear-view mirrors, but there’s a lot of open road in front of us. It’s a highway filled with many attractions, both of the cash and qualifying varieties. Monday is Veterans Day, so that means a four-day weekend and perhaps extra traffic on the roads and at HorseTourneys—but at HorseTourneys, extra traffic is always a good thing. Let’s take a spin through the upcoming four days.
You’ll want to get a jump on the other travelers by getting an early start on Friday.
Pick & Prays are the order of this weekend and, as most of you know, that’s always the case on Friday in these parts. We offer an up-to-$15,000 Pick & Pray on Friday. It carries an entry fee of $190 and has a guaranteed purse of at least $7,500. Win this and you’ll have plenty of fuel for the rest of your weekend journey.
If you win a $1,500 entry on Friday in our Horse Player World Series entry-only qualifier, you can add Las Vegas to your list of March destinations. One of every 20 entries will emerge victorious in this $89 buy-in affair.
There’s one featured event at HorsePlayers on Friday.
It’s a $75 NHC Pick & Pray with two spots guaranteed. These $75 tourneys are great opportunities to pick up a low-cost Bally’s Berth…or to earn NHC Tour Points, which seem to get more and more valuable as we get later into the year.
The 10 contest races for this tourney—and the two featured contests at HorseTourneys—are the 8th and 9th from Aqueduct; the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th at Del Mar where it’s opening day (no need to dress up for it here at HorseTourneys!); and the 7th and 8th from Gulfstream Park West…where you’re likely to see as much fashion on display as you will at Aqueduct.
After a good night’s sleep, you’ll want to get back on the road for three more headliners that are on your Saturday route, including another cash game-Horse Player World Series duo.
We double the stakes on Saturday to an up-to-$30,000 competition with $15,000 Guaranteed. Happily, the entry fee is not doubled, though—it’s $260.
The pot is also sweetened for Saturday’s Horse Player World Series qualifier given that the grand prize for this full-package play-in includes a four-night stay at The Orleans and a $500 travel stipend. You can drive right in to the 1-per-25 lot for a toll of $118. Unlimited parking is available.
Up ahead, you should see a big sign. “Last Chance for Aqueduct”. So if you didn’t secure an entry last week to the November 16 Aqueduct Challenge, consider this your last chance to do so for $59. If you miss this exit, you’ll have to proceed all the way to Ozone Park next Saturday on your own…and pony up $500 for the privilege.
Contest races for Saturday are the 8th and 9th from Aqueduct; the 8th through 11th at GPW (not to be confused with GPS); the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 6th from Del Mar ; and the 8th and 9th north of the border at Woodbine—12 races in total.
Sunday drivers will have lots of featured-tourney options on this day—10 at HorseTourneys and one at HorsePlayers. Two of them are brand-new offerings.
The Pegasus World Cup Betting Challenge (January 25-26) has had it’s buy-in re-routed to $6,000 for 2020. Our first qualifier for it is Sunday. The lower buy-in means a lower entry fee for you in our qualifiers—$384. One of every 20 entries will earn a $6,000 entry plus $500 for travel. Let’s hope the weather is better on World Cup Day this year!
The other Sunday “Grand Opening” is for Monmouth’s Last Chance NHC qualifier on December 28. Three NHC spots (plus cash and tour points) will be up for grabs in this one, held during a time of year when Garden State Parkway traffic is light. The entry fee on the 28th at Monmouth is $300, but winners of this $71 qualifier will receive not one, but two entries to the event. One of every 10 in our qualifier will advance.
Speaking of “not one, but two”, we have a pair of $10,000 Guaranteed Pick & Prays on Sunday. One is our “Big Bucks” tourney, which has an $1,150 entry fee and permits no more than 20 entrants. Payoffs go solely to the top three finishers on a 70%/20%/10% basis, and if we draw a full field, the pot will exceed $20,000.
The other is our weekly, $195 buy-in tourney. Entries for this one are capped at 118, and if we reach that level, the purse will be $20,000 or maybe a tad higher.
They say you can’t be in two places at once…but those people have never heard of the Flo-Cal Faceoff. The two-day, February 29-March 1, online competition offers a Guaranteed purse of $100,000, though it’s a “No Limit” tourney, so the final pot could well exceed $100,000. It’s modeled after last summer’s highly successful Spa & Surf Showdown. On Sunday, you can win a $1,500 entry to the Faceoff, which will feature full-card racing from Gulfstream and Santa Anita during Fountain of Youth weekend. Sunday’s qualifier will be a Pick & Pray with an $86 entry fee. The winning ratio is 1 in 20.
Only a few chances remain to punch your ticket to Trubiskyville (sorry, Bears fans) for the Hawthorne Fall NHC Super Qualifiers on November 29-30. Winners of our Sunday, $94 qualifier earn entry fees for both of the single-day contests ($800 total). The winning ratio in this one is 1 per 10.
Also on the Sunday board is a Pick & Pray qualifier for the Lone Star Park NHC tournament on December 7. One of every 10 entries, at $59 each, will win a $500 spot in the Dallas Metroplex event.
Of course, there’s a Horse Player World Series qualifier on Sunday…an entry-only Pick & Pray that will reward one of every 20 entrants. The entry fee is $89, and winners receive a $1,500 HPWS entry for their three-day, mythical-money handicapping pleasure next March.
We complete the Sunday road map with two other cash games: our up-to-$5,000 Exacta tourney with $1,000 Guaranteed. Here, players select a mythical three-horse-exacta box play in each of the 12 contest races, and the biggest total returns, based on $1 payoffs, wins. Remember no payout caps in these exacta tourneys. What the exacta pays is what you score. The format here, as always, is live.
Your mileage—in terms of fun-per-entry-fee-dollar as opposed to miles-per-gallon—will never be higher than in our $8 Pick 6 Jackpot tourney. It’s a six-race tourney, of course, and 70% of the net pool gets paid out to players via the normal, $2 win/place scoring method, while the other 30% goes to the Jackpot pool. Pick the winners of all six races and you win (or share, if multiple players do so) the Jackpot, which is now up to $3,308. This game is always run in live format, so if you want to maximize your chances of a six-for-six run, you should be able to hunt down the chalk pretty easily.
Our HorseTourneys traffic helicopter has spotted just one event at HorsePlayers on Sunday.
It’s a “regular,” $165 NHC qualifier with two spots guaranteed. Note that this tourney will be run in live-format mode. No need for prayers…though those can never hurt.
We will also have a featured schedule on Monday, Veterans Day. Among the available contest tracks that day will be Aqueduct, Laurel, Parx and Golden Gate. The precise offerings on Monday are, as of press time, still to be determined. So you could say that this particular road is still under construction. But there will be clear sailing by Monday.
Enjoy the long weekend if you are fortunate enough to get Monday off and…Happy Motoring!