The contest world and the racing media, alike, are still buzzing over the $644,000 Spa & Surf Showdown that saw Scott Fiedler win $248,000. It’s time to turn the page, though, because another weekend of featured-tourney action is already upon us.
It all begins on Friday.
Friday is your last day to qualify for Saturday’s Del Mar Pacific Classic Betting Challenge. One of every 20 entries, at $236 each, will earn a $4,000 entry in this Pick & Pray. We will also offer a Del Mar-only, full-card qualifier as your very last chance. PLEASE NOTE: The Pacific Classic Betting Challenge will take place exclusively at TVG. If you do not have a TVG account—or cannot get one set up—by Saturday, August 22, please DO NOT participate in this qualifier. Refunds/credits are not possible.
There are lots of Pick & Prays this weekend—especially on Friday and Saturday. One of them is Friday’s $10,000 Guaranteed No Limit cash tourney. Entries here are $190 each.
Over at HorsePlayers, there’s one qualifier on Friday for the NHC and one for the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge.
Five “Bally’s Berths” are on the line this weekend. Friday’s $75 NHC Pick & Pray will award a minimum of two seats, and NHC Tour points will also be awarded to those finishing in the top 10%. It’s a Pick & Pray with a winning ratio of 1 in 143.
The Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge play-in is a Low Ratio Pick & Pray. At least one $10,000 entry is guaranteed in this $500 event. The winning ratio here is 1-per-23.
Friday contest races are the 7th through 9th from Saratoga; the 1st, 2nd and 4th at Del Mar; and the 3rd through 6th from Monmouth Park—10 races in all.
Saturday offers seven featured tourneys—three over at HorsePlayers and four right here at HorseTourneys.
Cash games are always a prominent part of any Saturday around here, and the weekend’s richest event is the day’s $25,000 Guaranteed Pick & Pray. The entry fee is $260.
There’s also a $10,000 Guaranteed Big Bucks Pick & Pray for $1,150. The field for this competition is capped at 20, meaning that the purse could rise to over $20,000. Payoffs go out only to the top three—on a 70%/20%/10% basis.
A lower-budget—but extremely fun—Saturday cash game is the $8 Pick 6 Jackpot tourney. The carryover, awaiting the player or players who can go 6-for-6, is $19,478. Seventy percent of net entry fees (at $8 each) get paid out via traditional win/place scoring totals while 30% gets directed to the Jackpot. The Pick 6 Jackpot races this week are the 7th through 9th from the Spa and the 2nd through 4th at Del Mar. Think of it as a mini-Spa & Surf Showdown! Total betting interests, before scratches, across the six races: 45.
The big non-cash feature at HorseTourneys on Saturday is just that—our qualifier to The BIG One. The grand prize in this Pick & Pray includes $500 in cash plus an entry to the finals on September 19-20. (Just 11 online seats remain available.) The buy-in here is $395, and no more than 27 entries will be allowed in. In The BIG One, the top 10 finishers get their choice of a seat to the NHC, BCBC or Pegasus World Cup plus they share in a cash pool that is already up to $123,914 (and counting). Finishers 11-15 get a choice of either $1,500 or a Horse Player World Series entry. The BIG One will be held here at HorseTourneys this year, and the final field in September will consist of no more than 57 entries (50 online qualifiers plus up to seven buy-ins). So if you make it to The BIG One, you have a better-than-usual chance to leave with a nice prize.
Over at HorsePlayers, there are three features on the docket—a pair of Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge qualifiers and a special NHC play-in.
Saturday’s “regular” BCBC play-in has one grand prize guaranteed and carries an entry fee of $179. It’s a live-format tourney with a winning ratio of 1-per-65.
The winning ratio is just 1-per-11 in Saturday’s Super Low Ratio BCBC Pick & Pray. It also guarantees at least one winner no matter how many or few show up. In this one, the entry fee is $1,000.
The Saturday NHC qualifier is a live-format “Maiden Special” restricted to those who have yet to earn a spot in the 2021 “big dance”. The entry fee is $165, one seat is guaranteed and—because this is a restricted event—no NHC Tour points will be awarded.
The 12 contest races on Saturday are: Races 8 through 10 from Saratoga; races 9 and 10 at Woodbine; and the 3rd through 9th from Del Mar where there is a very nice Pacific Classic-day card (though the 6-horse Pacific Classic is not part of this 12-race schedule).
Eight more featured events come your way on Sunday.
A guaranteed berth is on the line in Sunday’s live-format, $395 qualifier to The BIG One, which takes place here (instead of at Laurel Park) on September 19-20. The field for The BIG One will number no more than 57—50 via online qualifiers plus up to seven buy-ins.
There’s also a last-chance qualifier on Sunday (if it fills) to the Ruidoso Handicapping Challenge—an onsite tournament on August 29. One of every 10 entries, at $48 each, will win a $400 spot in the competition, where two NHC seats will be on the line. And if you make it, you’ll also see one of the prettier racetrack venues to be found anywhere in the country.
Sunday’s cash games include our $15,000 Guaranteed No Limit Pick & Pray. The entry fee is $195.
We switch to live-format for Sunday’s $7,500 Guaranteed Big Bucks tourney. The pot could grow to$20,000 depending on participation, but it won’t be less than $7,500. The entry fee is $1,150, and payoffs go only to the top three finishers.
The second of the weekend’s two $8 Pick 6 Jackpot tourneys takes place on Sunday. Check out our Twitter feed on Saturday night or home page on Sunday for an update on what the Jackpot will be. It will be based on how many people take a shot at the Saturday Jackpot ($19,478)…and whether anyone hits it. The Pick 6 Jackpot competition is always a live-format game.
Our up-to-$5,000 Exacta tourney with $1,000 Guaranteed is also always played in live-format. Players in this one pick a three-horse exacta box in each race. The entry fee is $125, and no payoff caps are in effect.
There are live-format Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge and NHC qualifiers on Sunday at HorsePlayers.
A minimum of one $10,000 entry is assured in Sunday’s Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge Low Ratio qualifier, which carries an entry fee of $500 and a winning ratio of 1-per-23.
Sunday’s $165, “regular” NHC qualifier guarantees at least two tickets to Vegas. The winning ratio is 1-in-65.
Good luck in all of your contest endeavors this weekend, and we want to send out one more big “thank you” to everyone who made last week’s Spa & Surf Showdown the historic event that it was.