Last Weekend of BCBC Qualifiers and First Opportunity for Hawthorne Highlight Friday, Saturday, Sunday Featured Schedules

There’s still time—though not much—to join the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge field without having to pony up the full $10,000 nut. But before we review this weekend’s featured offerings there and here at HorseTourneys, let’s take a brief look ahead at the Breeders’ Cup tourneys we’ll be offering in a week’s time—including a heads up for you early-bird, last-minute feeder fans.

The contest races for our single-day featured tourneys (including $20,000 Guaranteed and $75,000 Guaranteed cash games) on Friday and Saturday, November 1 and 2, will consist solely of the full-cards from Santa Anita on those two days. There will be 10 races on Friday and 12 on Saturday.

We will also offer a two-day, all-mandatory cash tourney with $25,000 Guaranteed consisting of just the 14 Breeders’ Cup races (five on Friday, nine on Saturday).

Now here’s the one little wrinkle to keep in the back of your mind. (And don’t worry…we’ll remind you of this again.) Even though the BC is at Santa Anita, those Friday and Saturday race cards start early…1:45 pm ET (10:45 am PT) on Friday and 1:00 pm ET (10:00 am PT) on Saturday. That’s too early for us to offer early-bird feeders on the same day of the featured tourneys (again, since we’ll be using the full Santa Anita cards each day). So keep in mind that our “Early-Bird”, last-minute feeder for the Friday features will take place on THURSDAY night…and the early-bird feeders for Saturday will be held on Friday night. We’ll be offering many feeders ahead of those last-minute play-ins during the week, of course. But we know how popular those last-minute feeders are with many of you, so we wanted to give you this early heads up regarding this slight schedule tweak.

Enough about next week. Time to focus on this week! We have an excellent menu of 20 featured events this weekend that get started on Friday,

Attention is understandably ratcheting up for the Breeders’ Cup and the BCBC, but don’t go to sleep on the NHC. The first two of six guaranteed NHC seats this weekend will be up for grabs in Friday’s $75 Pick & Pray.

Or you can bolster your Breeders’ Cup bankroll in Friday’s up-to-$15,000 Pick & Pray with $7,500 Guaranteed. It’s $190 to play and no more than 90 may enter.

This weekend is obviously the last in which to qualify for the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge. Five BCBC qualifiers will take place at HorsePlayers this weekend—each guaranteeing at least one $10,000 entry to the world’s most prestigious live-bankroll handicapping tournament—and the first of those five will take place on Friday.

It’s a Low Ratio Pick & Pray with an entry fee of $500 and a winning ratio of 1 in 23.

Contest races for Friday’s featured tourneys at both HorseTourneys and HorsePlayers are the 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th and 10th at Keeneland; and the 7th through 9th from Belmont; and the 4th and 6th from the site of the Breeders’ Cup, Santa Anita—10 races in all.

Saturday is closing day at Keeneland, so it’s your last opportunity in 2019 to enjoy their typically-large fields as part of one of our tourneys. Here’s what the day’s schedule looks like:

The Saturday headliner is our richest tourney of the weekend—an up-to-$30,000 Pick & Pray with $15,000 guaranteed. The game has an entry fee of $260 and entries are capped at 140.

Running with a live-format is Saturday’s NHC “Maiden” qualifier on Saturday. It’s restricted to those who have yet to earn a 2020 NHC seat. The buy-in is $165 and one NHC spot is guaranteed. Because the field is, by definition, restricted and because only one seat is guaranteed, there will be no NHC Tour points awarded in this event.

We’re back to a Pick & Pray for the Horse Player World Series qualifier. Winners receive a $1,500 entry, a four-night hotel stay, and $500 for travel to the prestigious March 26-28 event. Saturday’s package qualifier costs $118 to play, and one of every 25 entrants will win.

There are two featured tourneys at HorsePlayers on Saturday—both offering $10,000 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge entries.

One is a “regular,” live-format game with an entry fee of $179, and a winning ratio of 1 in 65. One $10,000 entry/prize is guaranteed.

The other is a Super Low Ratio Pick & Pray. It carries an entry fee of $1,000, and the winning ratio is just 1 in 11. One grand prize is guaranteed here as well—even if fewer than 11 take part.

The Saturday contest races are: the 6th through 9th at Keeneland; the 7th through 10th from Belmont; and the 3rd, 5th, 6th and 7th at Santa Anita—a dozen races all together (altogether?).

The Sunday schedule offers 12 featured events—10 of them right here at HorseTourneys. Here’s a look at some of them:

New to the Sunday schedule is the first play-in to the November 29-30 Hawthorne NHC Super Qualifiers where a total of eight NHC spots (two on Friday, six on Saturday) will be on the table. Sunday’s qualifier costs just $94 to play and one in 10 contestants will win $800 worth of entry fees—enough for each day’s competition at Hawthorne.

Sunday offers not one but two $10,000 Guaranteed cash tourneys. One is our customary, $195-buy-in game (It’s not pictured above, but it will be a Pick & Pray this week). If we get enough entries, the pot could swell to as much as $20,000…but it won’t be less than $10,000.

The other $10,000 Guaranteed Sunday tourney is our “Big Bucks” game, which has an $1,150 entry fee and permits no more than 20 entrants. Payoffs go solely to the top three finishers on a 70%/20%/10% basis, and if we draw a full field, the pot will exceed $20,000. These Big Bucks games are always run as Pick & Prays, and this week is no exception.

There are two NHC qualifiers on Sunday. One is a live-format, low-ratio tourney with an entry fee of $500 and a winning ratio of 1 in 21. One seat is guaranteed.

The other is a “regular”, two-seats-guaranteed event with a more standard entry fee of $165. This one will be run in live-format as well.

A qualifier for the Lone Star Park NHC tournament (December 7) is back on the board this week. One of every 10 entries, at $59 each, will win a $500 spot in the suburban Dallas event.

There’s also a Horse Player World Series qualifier on Sunday…an entry-only Pick & Pray that will reward one of every 20 entrants. The entry fee is $89, and winners receive a $1,500 HPWS entry for use next March.

Also on tap is a qualifier to the Flo-Cal Faceoff on February 29-March 1. The Faceoff is an online event with a Guaranteed purse of $100,000, though it’s a “No Limit” tourney, so the final pot could well exceed $100,000. (It’s modeled after last summer’s highly successful Spa & Surf Showdown.) On Sunday, you can win a $1,500 entry to the two-day, competition that will feature full-card racing from Gulfstream and Santa Anita during Fountain of Youth weekend. Sunday’s qualifier will be a Pick & Pray with an $86 entry fee. The winning ratio is 1 in 20.

We have more cash games on Sunday besides our two $10,000 Guaranteed contests. For example, there’s our up-to-$5,000 Exacta tourney with $1,000 Guaranteed. Players select a mythical three-horse-exacta box play in each of the 12 contest races, and the biggest total returns, based on $1 payoffs, wins. Remember no payout caps in these exacta tourneys. What the exacta pays is what you score. The format here, as always, is live.

Just $8 gets you into our Pick 6 Jackpot tourney in which 70% of the net pool gets paid out to players via the normal, $2 win/place scoring method, while the other 30% goes to the Jackpot pool. Pick the winners of all six races and you win (or share, if multiple players do so) the Jackpot, which is now up to $3,241. This game is always run in live format, so if you want to go whole hog for the Jackpot, you could conceivably just play the post-time favorite in every race.

Over at HorsePlayers, there are two live-format BCBC qualifiers—one a low-ratio game, and the other a Super Low Ratio qualifier.

The Low Ratio tourney requires an entry fee of $500 and offers contestants a one-in-23 chance of a BCBC seat. One prize is guaranteed.

The Super Low Ratio qualifier carries a $1,000 barrier to entry. Here, the winning ratio is one in just 11. One grand prize is guaranteed here as well.

We wish you luck in all your tourney endeavors this weekend, and, if you don’t happen to win a BCBC qualifier by Sunday, be aware that the BCBC play-ins will continue to be offered at HorsePlayers right through Breeders’ Cup Eve next Thursday. Happy Handicapping.