02/24/2010 12:00AM

Horseplayer title again has bonus

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For the third straight year, a $2 million bonus will go to anyone who wins the National Handicapping Championship Tour and goes on to take the Daily Racing Form/National Thoroughbred Racing Association National Handicapping Championship. The tour is a yearlong series of handicapping tournaments that offer prize money and qualifying berths to the national championship, scheduled to be held for the 13th time next January in Las Vegas.

Combined with an expected first-place championship prize of $500,000, the winner could net a total payday of $2.5 million.

Players can sign up for the 2010 NHC Tour at . The year's first free online qualifier restricted to tour members took place last Saturday on the full card from Gulfstream Park. A record 843 players competed, with Tim Catlett, Eric Yee and Randy Bauer earning berths to next January's championship.

New this year is a two-tiered tour membership. For a $100 membership fee, participants may compete for the championship berths given to top tour finishers. A $500 fee allows players also to compete for year-end prizes for top tour finishers.