05/03/2017 1:44PM

Oaks Day qualifier could build into something big

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The Daily Racing Form World Championship of Handicapping is off to a great start. Last weekend on DRF Tournaments, 22 players won their way into the first big qualifier for the WCH, a Grade 1 qualifier which will be held on Derby Day. In case you missed last week’s announcement, he WCH is a $1 million event with no takeout to be held online Jan. 27-28. The field size is limited to 200 and you can buy your way in directly for $5,000, but there are also several player-friendly ways to qualify.

The Oaks Day feature on DRF Tournaments is one such way. It’s a $95 round-one event and the last chance to win into the Grade 1 qualifier on Derby Day. It’s expected to be the largest WCH event yet. One in seven entries will advance to Saturday. As an alternative, you can buy your way in directly to Saturday’s Grade 1 for $580. One in 10 entries in the Grade 1 will win their full $5,000 buy-ins for the World Championship of Handicapping.

There's also an opportunity to win into Saturday's Grade 1 absolutely free. DRFT will be holding a winner-take-all steel cage match of a qualifier, where the outright winner will receive a $580 buy-in for Saturday.

Players looking for a more probable way to start their journeys to the WCH for less of an initial investment might want to consider feeding into a round-one event for $11. The top 10 percent of entries advance from the feeders to the round ones. The current plan is for there to be round-one options every Wednesday through Sunday on DRFT. The next Grade 1 qualifier will be held on Preakness Day.

Other highlights this weekend include a $3,000 credit builder on Derby Day. The credit builder costs $50 and the winner will receive $1,200 in site credit, a perfect way to fund upcoming contest play.

Sunday’s featured events include a qualifier for the Wynn Challenge in August. Entries cost $108 and one in 27 entries will receive their $2,000 buy-ins plus $500 in travel. There’s also a one-day qualifier for Santa Anita’s Preakness Challenge. Players put up $225 and one in 23 will win $5,000 packages ($4,500 seat plus $500 in travel). Finally, there’s a round-one event for the Belmont Stakes Challenge. Entry fee is $90 and one in five win entry into the $410 Belmont qualifier on Sunday, May 21.

For more information, including a full list of all the contest options available, check out tournaments.drf.com.