A dozen seats to the 2020 NHC are certain to be awarded here this weekend—eight in a single day…in a single tourney. That represents just a small fraction of the featured action, however, during the 52nd and final weekend of 2019. It all begins on Friday.
Most of the 21 featured tourneys this weekend will be run in live format. If you’re a Pick & Pray fan, though, you will want to give Friday your full and undivided attention as all six marquis events will be operated in “set it and forget it” mode.
Cash games are always a prominent part of the schedule at HorseTourneys, and on Friday, we have the up-to-$15,000 Pick & Pray with $7,500 guaranteed. The entry fee is $190, and entries are capped at 90.
Your first of two chances this weekend to win a $6,500 package to the January 25 Pegasus World Cup Betting Challenge comes on Friday. The entry fee for this highly-anticipated Pick & Pray is $384. One per 20 will earn a $6,000 entry (plus $500 for travel) to the Pegasus.
Also on a Friday/Sunday schedule this weekend are qualifiers to the NHC Last Chance Tournament on February 6 at Bally’s Las Vegas. One of every 10 entries will earn a $500 entry. Please note…should you win an entry to this tournament and later earn an actual 2020 NHC seat prior to February 6, you have the option of keeping the entry, trading it in for $500 in HorseTourneys credit or transferring the entry to another player. The deadline for letting us know of your plans is February 1.
Players can take a shot each weekend day to win a spot at the Horse Player World Series. The first of these is Friday in the form of an entry-only Pick & Pray with an entry fee of $89. The winning ratio is 1 per 20. Winners receive a $1,500 entry to one of the true classics on the annual handicapping-contest calendar.
It’s not a classic yet because it’s brand new…but we certainly have high hopes for the the February 29-March 1, Flo-Cal Faceoff. The Faceoff is a $100,000 guaranteed online event here at HorseTourneys, and it’s a “No Limit” tourney, which means the final pot could swell well beyond $100,000. On Friday, you have your first of two weekend opportunities (there’s also one on Sunday) to earn 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 Pick & Pray has an $86 entry fee. The winning ratio is 1 in 20.
The first two of 12 guaranteed NHC spots this weekend go up for grabs in Friday’s $75 Pick & Pray at HorsePlayers.
With the $75 entry fee in this one virtually assuring a bulky field, this tourney has the added benefit of offering 2019 NHC Tour to lots of players (those finishing in the top 10 percent of the field). Those points can come in handy for those competing for year-end bonus money…or for those in contention to finish among the Top 50 non-qualifiers in points (which would then get you a berth).
Contest races for Friday (for all six features at HorseTourneys and HorsePlayers) are the 6th through 9th from Tampa; the 7th through 9th at Laurel; and the 6th through 8th from Hawthorne—10 races in all.
Four more featured tourneys—all of them live-format games—come your way on Saturday. The one with probably the biggest “sizzle” is the featured tourney at HorsePlayers.
It’s an online NHC Super Qualifier with no fewer than eight seats to the 2020 event guaranteed. The entry fee for this live-format tournament is $430. Theoretically, this works out to a winning ratio of 1-per-25. Though if fewer than 200 sign up, then your winning ratio will be more favorable than that…given the eight-spot guarantee.
Three more features are on tap at HorseTourneys.
The weekend’s richest cash game is Saturday’s up-to-$30,000 tourney with $17,500 Guaranteed. The barrier to entry is $260, and no more than 133 may enter.
Day 2 of weekend qualifying to the Horse Player World Series takes place on Saturday. This one is a full-package competition in which winners earn a $1,500 entry plus a four-night hotel stay at The Orleans (which features complimentary shuttle service to the Strip to all those who show their B Connected card) and a $500 travel stipend. The entry fee for this contest is $148, and the winning ratio is 1-per-20.
You can also compete on Saturday for a berth to the Tampa Bay Downs High Roller Tournament on January 11. One of every 15 entries, at $80 each, will get a $1,000 entry to the Tampa tourney.
The tentative schedule of contest races for Saturday will be the 7th through 11th at Gulfstream; the 4th through 8th from Santa Anita where it’s opening day; and the 8th and 9th at Aqueduct. That’s 12 races in total.
As per usual, we have a crowded Sunday slate. This week’s contains 11 featured-tourney options.
The nine events here at HorseTourneys will all utilize the live format. Sunday’s big cash game is an up-to-$20,000 tourney with $10,000 Guaranteed. The entry fee here is $195.
Your second chance of the weekend to win a $6,500 package to the Pegasus World Cup Betting Challenge takes place on Sunday. One of every 20 entries in this $384 live-format qualifier will participate the January 25th live-bankroll competition.
For the third consecutive day, you can play for a spot at the Horse Player World Series. Sunday’s qualifier is an entry-only tourney with an entry fee of $89. One in 20 will advance to the The Orleans for their signature handicapping fest in March.
You can also try on Sunday to win a $1,000 entry to Sam Houston’s January 26 NHC qualifier. The entry fee for this Pick & Pray is $80, and one in 15 will succeed.
Sunday is your last chance to pick up a $1,500 entry to the NTRA/Santa Anita NHC Super Qualifier on January 4. This play-in carries a 1-per-15 winning ratio and an entry fee of $118.
The second of two weekend qualifiers to the NHC Last Chance Tournament at Bally’s is slated for Sunday. Once again, one of every 10 entries, at $59 each, will pick up a $500 entry for NHC eve. In last Sunday’s renewal of this tourney, no fewer than seven players won top prizes.
We offer another Flo-Cal Faceoff qualifier on Sunday. As was the case on Friday, the entry fee will be $86 and the winning ratio is set at 1 in 20. Winners advance to the $100,000 Guaranteed online cash tourney (Feb.29-March 1) that will strictly feature racing from Gulfstream (Flo) and Santa Anita (Cal).
Two additional cash games complete the Sunday schedule at HorseTourneys.
One is our up-to-$5,000 Exacta tourney with $1,000 Guaranteed. Players pick a three-horse-exacta box play in each of the 12 contest races. You’re credited with the returns on a $1.00 base play, and the winner is whoever amasses the highest 12-race total. (There are never any payoff caps in these Exacta games.)
The other is our $8 Pick 6 Jackpot tourney. Seventy percent of the net pool goes to top finishers 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) the Jackpot, which is now up to $4,097.
Over at HorsePlayers, there are two featured tourneys on Sunday, and both are Pick & Prays.
For $165, you can play for a spot in the 2020 NHC. Two are guaranteed in this qualifier.
For $500, you can try your luck (and skill) in a Low Ratio Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge. The winning ratio here is 1-per-23, and one $10,000 entry is guaranteed to be awarded.
We hope you end 2019 on a winning note. And we want to give you an early heads up on an opportunity to both end 2019 and begin 2020 on winning notes…in the very same tourney.
A pair of two-day, live-format tourneys—one a $195 win/place game and the other a low-cost $10 Survivor event—will bridge the changing of the decade. There will be at least 20 races over the course of the two days to decide the respective outcomes.
Good luck to all…and Happy New Year!