03/27/2017 1:36PM

Wolfson among last HPWS qualifiers


In the final qualifier for this week’s Horse Player World Series, five players won their $1,500 seats via DRF Tournaments on Sunday. The five were Jim Burrell. Charles White, Adam Thoutt, Steve Wolfson Sr., and Steve Meier.

The key horse for four out of the five qualifiers was the winner of Gulfstream’s eighth, Extravagant Kid, who returned $44.40 win-place combined. Burrell ($92.80) was the outright winner with six collections overall. He backed up his hit on Extravagant Kid with another nice score on Internet Success ($23.40) in Oaklawn’s fifth.

White’s day was very impressive. Not only did he manage second with $90.80, he did so without the benefit of Extravagant Kid. He cashed in nine of the 12 races and seven of the last eight. His biggest winner was Internet Success and he got a critical $18.80 payout in the third-to-last race with Rocky Tough in Oaklawn’s seventh.

Wolfson’s name should be familiar to all contest players. Known as "the godfather" of contest play, Wolfson, Sr. was inducted into the National Handicapping Championship Hall of Fame this year. His path to HPWS qualification was rather the opposite of White’s. He had just three collections: Extravagant Kid, Liar’s Smoker ($12.60) in Santa Anita’s fourth, and Rocky Tough.

Also on Sunday, Kenny Boagni won a seat to Santa Anita’s Preakness tournament. His total of $86.80, which put him nearly $20 clear of second came courtesy of four collections led by Extravagant Kid and Internet Success.

In Saturday’s featured game, a round-one contest for the Triple Play event, three players advanced to the finals: Jonathon Kinchen, John Gerneth and Mark Livingstone. At first, it seems remarkable that Kinchen was the only player in the 32-player event to use cap horse Fast and Accurate ($64) in the Spiral Stakes at Turfway. But this was an all-in qualifier, meaning players didn’t have the ability to just play the board later on. Kinchen, who earned three entries to Saturday’s contest via feeders, had the leverage to spread across his three entries in the Spiral and win the day.

Gerneth’s big winner was Montu ($51.60) in the Rushaway Stakes at Turfway. He had two other decent prices as well: Stately Defiance ($22.20) in Tampa’s eighth and Buy Me a Drink ($14.40) in Santa Anita’s fifth. Livingstone’s card consisted of Montu and four other cashes, the longest of which was also Buy Me a Drink.

The Triple Play event is a huge opportunity for players to win a prize package worth $10,500 for as little as $25 (or $110 if you buy-in to round one directly rather than qualify). The prize package includes entries to Keeneland’s Grade One Gamble, Santa Anita’s Preakness contest, and Monmouth’s Pick Your Prize event. Feeders begin again on Wednesday – put up $25 and finish in the top 20 percent and you can compete in another round-one contest next weekend. The finals, which can also be bought into directly for $1,000, take place on Easter Sunday, April 16.

For a full list of all the happenings on DRF Tournaments this week and beyond, go to tournaments.drf.com.