As the two-day The BIG One was about to begin, Ted Apple smiled at his wife Cheryl and retreated to his upstairs “man cave” that he calls “The Paddock.” Cheryl knew that meant he had a contest to play, but Ted didn’t share any further details with her. “I didn’t want to say anything about the money involved, knowing how many really excellent horseplayers there were in it,” he said. “I was just hoping to finish in the Top 10.”
One of the biggest weekends on the HorseTourneys calendar is coming up with The BIG One taking place this Saturday and Sunday. A field of no more than 57 will compete for 10 seats to either the NHC, the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge or the Pegasus World Cup (player’s choice) plus another five entries are up for grabs for the Horse Player World Series (or $1,500 in cash if the player prefers). There’s also a large chunk of cash on the line.
When you have as many as 28 featured tourneys in a five-day period, one of the fun by-products of that is that the door is opened wider for some interesting, out-of-the-ordinary results. We seemed to have more than our usual share of that last week.
Only five online spots remain for The BIG One next Saturday and Sunday. With 10 seats up for grabs to the NHC, the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge or the Pegasus World Cup (winners get to choose!) plus another five entries on the line for the Horse Player World Series (or $1,500 in cash in the player prefers)…plus a cash-prize pool of $169,032…all being shared by a field of no more than 57, there is certainly a lot to play for next weekend. Seven seats are set aside for buy-in entries—which are priced at $7,500 each—but you can win one of the five remaining online spots for $395 if you succeed during this final weekend of qualifying.
Tracking all of the featured tourneys during Labor Day week was pretty…labor intensive…with 29 such events taking place from Wednesday through Monday. For many of our players, however, handicapping was a labor of love last week—and a rewarding one at that.
It’s Labor Day weekend coming up—which means it’s your last chance to play Saratoga and Del Mar for a while. And on Monday, you can become the first to qualify for the January 9-10 Flo-Cal Faceoff—a $150,000 Guaranteed event focusing solely on full-card racing from Gulfstream and Santa Anita. As announced just this week, the Faceoff, whose inaugural edition (worth $225,000) was won by Thomas Blosser of Cornville, Arizona, will serve as the first leg of the 2021 Tourney Triple series which offers a $2 million bonus should someone sweep all three legs, a $1 million bonus for winning two out of three and valuable tournament seats to the top three overall performers during the three competitions.
HorseTourneys Announces New “Tourney Triple” Series for 2021, Including $2 Million Bonus for a Series Sweep and a $1 Million Bonus for Capturing Two Legs – plus Prizes for the Top Three Performers
HorseTourneys will unveil a special three-tourney series in 2021, the Tourney Triple, that combines two of the year’s most popular online events with a brand new competition in April—and that offers bonus prizes** for top finishers, including a $2 million bonus should a player sweep the three events and a $1 million bonus should someone win two of the three series legs.
The Tourney Triple will begin with the January 9-10 Flo-Cal Faceoff, a Saturday-Sunday, $1,500 buy-in tourney in which players make mythical selections on each race from the days’ full cards at Gulfstream and Santa Anita. Earlier this year, Thomas Blosser of Cornville, Arizona, won $88,000 in the inaugural edition of the Flo-Cal Faceoff, which had a total purse of $225,000. Feeders and qualifiers for the Flo-Cal Faceoff are now available.
The series will continue in April with the new HorseTourneys Players Championship. Scheduled for April 2-3, the Players Championship will require contestants to make 15 mythical win-and-place selections each day from approximately 30 available races spread across a variety of the weekend’s racetracks. The entry fee for the Players Championship is expected to be $2,000.
The Tourney Triple will conclude on August 14-15 with the highly popular Spa & Surf Showdown, a two-day, full-card tourney featuring racing from two of America’s showpiece racing venues, Saratoga and Del Mar. The most recent edition of the Showdown last month featured a record online purse of $644,000 and was won by Scott Fiedler of Babylon, N.Y. Fiedler earned a winner’s share of $232,112 plus an additional $16,000 in day-bonus money. In 2019, NHC Hall of Fame Paul Shurman of Dix Hills, N.Y., won $109,000 in the first Spa & Surf Showdown. The entry fee for the 2021 Spa & Surf Showdown is expected to be $2,500.
(Dates for the Tourney Triple competitions are tentative and subject to change.)
In addition to the $1 Million bonus for winning two of three, and the $2 million bonus for a sweep, there will be bonus prizes awarded to the top three overall performers in the Tourney Triple series—based on a points formula that will award 100 points for a first-place finish, 99 points for second, down to 1 point for a 100th-place finish. The overall points leader at the end of the Tourney Triple will receive a $10,000 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC) entry and a National Horseplayers Championship (NHC) entry (or $5,000 in lieu of an NHC seat if the winner is already double-qualified to the NHC). The person with the second-most points will earn an NHC entry (or $5,000 if already double qualified), and the third-place points finisher will receive an entry to the 2021 edition of The BIG One at Laurel Park plus $500 for travel.
“In a relatively short period of time, players have made the Flo-Cal Faceoff and Spa & Surf Showdown two of the most important events on the contest calendar,” said McKay Smith, President of HorseTourneys. “By adding the Players Championship and tying all three together with an attractive bonus program, we believe that we will be even better positioned to recognize and reward the people who are truly the lifeblood of the racing industry—the players. We also want to thank our racetrack partners including those at The Stronach Group, The New York Racing Association, Inc., Keeneland and the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club for their ongoing support and cooperation in making exciting tourneys like these available to racing fans.”
Questions? Email HorseTourneys at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For the $ 2 Million Prize: (a) a forty (40) year annuity that pays out $50,000 per year for forty (40) years, OR (b) a lump sum cash settlement of $1,200,000
For the $1 Million Prize: (a) a forty (40) year annuity that pays out $25,000 per year for forty (40) years, OR (b) a lump sum cash settlement of $600,000.
The summer is nearing an end but the winning continues at HorseTourneys and HorsePlayers. Last week’s action contained a nice mix of new qualifiers and good, old-fashioned cash, NHC seats and BCBC entries. The featured-tourney fun began on Wednesday.
Could we already be nearing the end of summer? According to the calendar (which seems like a less believable companion this year), the answer is “Yes”. On what will be the final weekend of August, we have 19 featured events—including a last chance, a first chance and lots of fun stuff in between.