06/27/2014 11:30AM

Fornatale: Win an NHC seat for just $15


There is a unique opportunity this weekend to win a National Handicapping Championship seat, playing against only a few hundred people, for as little as $15. It’s the DRFBets Summer Challenge. Saturday marks the second and final opportunity to qualify for one of 20 spots in Round 2, to be held July 5. The top four finishers there will win seats to the NHC in Las Vegas. There also will be $2,500 in prize money.

Here’s how it works: There is a $25 registration fee. In Round 1, players must make 10 $15 real-money win bets on any races they choose at designated tracks. Saturday’s tracks are Belmont, Monmouth, Woodbine, and Santa Anita. Players keep all monies won, meaning that if you can break even on your bets, you have a chance to win an NHC seat for just $25.

And that entry fee can be reduced even further. If you follow the @DRFTournaments Twitter feed, wait for us to follow you back and send us a direct message after you’ve entered the contest, and you’ll receive $10 in credit at the DRF store.

This is a great opportunity, and you can sign up right now. The contest is available to all DRFBets and Xpressbet members. If you don’t already have an account, you can sign up for one today.

Also on Saturday, BCQualify.com is hosting the finals of June’s two-stage contest. The field is set, with 73 entrants competing for six full Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge spots, plus a $500 travel allowance.

If you didn’t make the finals this month, there are a couple of opportunities next month as the one-day format returns Saturday, July 5, and Sunday, July 20. If you’re a fan of the two-stage format, that will return with a series of contests in August. Saturday’s sequence looks strong, with five graded stakes and a good mix of races. There are no maiden races – which is either good news or bad news, depending on your handicapping preferences.

Here is a list of the races for Saturday’s contest:
3:47    Churchill 7
4:18    Churchill 8
4:30    Santa Anita 2
4:41    Monmouth 9
4:49    Churchill 9
5:12    Monmouth 10
5:28    Belmont 9
5:43    Monmouth 11
5:59    Belmont 10
6:00    Santa Anita 5
6:30    Santa Anita 6
7:00    Santa Anita 7

Sunday’s NHCQualify.com contest should be a turf lover’s delight, with seven turf races in the sequence. Up to five NHC spots will be awarded, and entries cost $165. You can sign up here. Here is a complete list of races for Sunday:
3:16    Churchill 6
3:30    Arlington 4
3:47    Churchill 7
4:00    Santa Anita 1
4:30    Arlington 6
4:48    Churchill 9
5:00    Arlington 7
5:12    Monmouth 10
5:18    Churchill 10
5:43    Monmouth 11
6:00    Arlington 9
6:30    Santa Anita 6

Over at PublicHandicapper.com, this weekend’s contest races all take place Saturday. They are:
Royal Heroine at Santa Anita
Senorita at Santa Anita
Gold Cup at Santa Anita
Iowa Derby at Prairie Meadows

As always, PublicHandicapper has a weekly prize for anyone who picks all four races correctly – a 10-card Daily Racing Form past-performance plan. It’s never too late to sign up.