04/28/2014 10:38AM

Weekend recap for NHCQualify, BCQualify and Public Handicapper


Favorites ruled in Saturday’s NHCQualify.com contest, where four players won entry into the National Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas, to be held in January of 2015 at the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino. Of the twelve contest races, five were won by favorites and another three went to the second choices. There were no cap horses (prices are "capped" at 20/1 for contest purposes). One race, the 4th at Santa Anita, was won by the longest shot on the board. But even that runner, Dancingtothestars, only paid $13.80 because the field had scratched down to four runners. The resulting scores were very low -- this was the first time since January that the winner didn’t make it three figures. It’s very rare to see qualifying scores that don’t even equal two times the initial contest bankroll of $48 ($2 win and place over twelve races).

Jeff Arthur of Chesapeake, Virginia won the contest with a score of $89.30. He tabbed five of the shorter priced winners in the first two-thirds of the contest, but what won him the day was his selection of Top Kisser in Santa Anita’s 7th race, who paid $21.80, by far the longest price in Saturday’s sequence of races.

Brendan Fay of Wilmington, Delaware finished second with $87.20. Fay avoided the early chalk but got on the board with Dancingtothestars in Santa Anita’s 4th race. Then he made a strong run, picking Top Kisser as well. But those two winners still weren’t quite enough. He secured his NHC seat by selecting the winner of the 10th at Hawthorne, Sacred Range, who returned $17.80.

Also winning trips to Las Vegas to play in the NHC were Keith Fenton of Fort Worth, Texas ($82.20) and David Murphy of Novato, California ($81.40).

Sunday’s BCQualify.com was another story in terms of scores. The winner, Steven Turner of Las Vegas, Nevada, finished with $159.00, an impressive 3.3 times the initial bankroll of $48. He picked two cap horses in the twelve-race sequence, Magic Lily, in the contest’s first event, the 6th at Gulfstream Park, and Kela’s Assault, in the seventh contest race, in Hawthorne’s 6th race. He rounded out his total with Ifoundmy Mojo ($14.80) in Hawthorne’s 7th.

Greg Bone of Dallas, Texas was second with a total score of $133.10. He had three winners on the card, the aforementioned Kela’s Assault, Commander Cloud in Santa Anita’s 4th ($27.40), and Dancing Rock in Hawthorne’s 8th ($15.20), along with two place horses.

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The third and final Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge entry went to Michael Sussman of Park City, Utah. He didn’t have a winner for the first six races but then got on a roll with three winners in a row (Kela’s Assault, Commander Cloud and Ifoundmy Mojo). But his most interesting pick was in the contest’s last race – Phaniebdancing, an even-money shot in Hawthorne’s 9th. In theory, Sussman wasn’t vulnerable to the favorite – that is, even if Phaniebdancing won, Sussman would have still held his spot as long as his closest pursuers didn’t get enough place points to move past him. But Sussman chose to play the favorite anyway and it’s a good thing for him that he did. The fourth place finisher, William Shurman, played the 12-1 place horse, Julmae, and would have qualified over Sussman but for the extra points Sussman gained on Phaniebdancing.

In other contest news, the 2014 Public Handicapper Prep contest is now in the books. User Roscoe21 came up with Pepper’s Crown, a 46-1 shot in the San Francisco mile to win the $1,000 first prize and a 3-month unlimited subscription for enhanced Formulator past performances.

Here is a list of the top ten finishers:

1 roscoe21  (12/48)  $157.20 
2 S Tanwongprasert (10/50)  $155.20 
3 Groveland Horses (10/51)  $153.20 
4 mpierson  (13/52)  $144.00 
5 karol e   (13/48)  $138.40 
6 bigrtex NHC Tour (11/50)  $137.60 
7 g-bird   (11/37)  $137.20 
8 gcp123   (10/52)  $136.20 
9 mattglass78  (10/48)  $135.00 
10 Rick Makins  (9/48)  $131.00 

The number in parentheses is (Wins/Starts)

Remember, the 2014 Public Handicapper Challenge starts this weekend. Check back in this space tomorrow for a full explanation of how the contest works. Signup in available at https://www.publichandicapper.com/signup.cfm.