02/20/2017 2:55PM

Navy man qualifies for Ultimate Betting Challenge

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Five players won their way into major upcoming handicapping contests on Sunday via the DRF Tournaments platform, tournaments.drf.com. Edward Enborg and Evan Freedman won into the Ultimate Betting Challenge, and Ken Jordan, Martin Quinn, and Anson Clark qualified for the Horse Player World Series.

Enborg, in his late 20s, is one of the tournament world’s young guns. He had a strong day on Sunday, collecting in eight of the 12 races, including six in a row from the second through the seventh race. His biggest price was Fox Dolly ($25) in Tampa’s seventh race. A lieutenant junior grade in the U.S. Navy, he finished with $110.20.

His closest pursuer was Evan Freedman. Freedman tallied $109.60 on the back of seven collections. He needed the $27.40 he got back for Pleasant Tales in Oaklawn’s eighth, the penultimate contest race, to secure qualification to the UBC, a contest held jointly between Gulfstream and Santa Anita that takes place on March 11.

The Horse Player World Series – with its expected seven-figure prize pool based on 750 entries – takes place March 30-April 1 at the Orleans in Las Vegas.

Jordan, familiar to many players for his second-place finish at the National Handicapping Championship in 2015 and a deep run at the HPWS later that same year, was best overall with $113.40. He got off the blocks strong, catching the cap horse Foxy Joxy in just the second contest event (Foxy Joxy paid a whopping $103.80 to win and $46.80 to place but those prices were limited to $42 and $22 respectively for the contest). He still needed the winner of the anchor leg, and found it in Dontblamerocket ($21.60) in Fair Grounds’s ninth.

Quinn started strong as well with four straight collections, also getting home with Dontblamerocket in the last. His final score was $107.40.

The final Sunday qualification belonged to Clark. Things looked bleak for him after the fourth race, with several price horses posted and a score that stood at a goose egg. But then he reeled off six good prices in a row: $31.20, $16.60, $13.20, $12.60, $16.20, and $16.40. He missed the last two but his total of $106.20 still had him nearly $5 clear of fourth.

On Saturday, DRFT hosted three contests with seats to important upcoming tournaments.

Kevin Costello and Jeff Joffrion won in to the Grade One Gamble. Costello was the runaway winner with $117.60. His biggest hit came early with near capper Bodhisattva ($56.40) in Laurel’s eighth. He also connected with Bodie Ramsey ($21.40) later in the sequence. There’s no word if Costello is on his way to becoming a Buddha, but he is on his way to Keeneland.

Joffrion added Jet Majesty ($15.20) and Star’s Valentino ($22) to his early score on Bodhisattva, securing a spot as well. His final score was $93.60, just $2.20 over third.

Also on Saturday, two players won seats for the Wynn Challenge, one of the most popular summer handicapping tournaments, held at the Wynn Las Vegas on August 4-5.

Craig Kaufman was best with $110.80. Things looked great for Kaufman after the first third of the contest. He had Senior Investment ($17.80) in the first contest race, Bodhisattva, and Meantime ($22) in Gulfstream’s ninth. That score wouldn’t quite have held up for a spot, so it’s good he had one more collection, Arctic Shiller ($14.60) in Aqueduct’s nightcap, to push him over the top.

Peter Osella’s $99.60 came courtesy of Bohdisattva, Bodie Ramsey, and impressive winner Imperial Hint ($11.40) in the General George at Laurel, with two short-priced collections mixed in. He was $8 clear of Costello – who was looking for a double – in third.

Finally on Saturday, William Moran ($98.40) secured a spot in Monmouth’s Pick Your Prize contest, which takes place June 4. Moran was well clear of second with four collections, including Senior Investment, Bodhisattva, and Imperial Hint.

Contest action returns to DRF Tournaments this week with a full slate of feeders, credit builders, and match-up contests that allow you to win into major events for small money. For more information, make sure to check out tournaments.drf.com.