Breeders' Cup Limited and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) have combined forces to launch a new online qualifying contest platform, HorsePlayers.com, the two organizations announced March 28. HorsePlayers.com will serve as the official online qualifying site for both the Breeders' Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC) and the NTRA's newly re-branded National Horseplayers Championship (NHC).
HorsePlayers.com will offer low-cost "feeder" contests and one-day qualifiers where players can win entries to the two richest, most prestigious handicapping contests in the world. Contest players will enjoy the benefits of a coordinated BCBC and NHC qualifying schedule, a low takeout structure, single site registration and seamless play in BCBC and NHC qualifiers on the same contest platform.
Fans are encouraged to visit HorsePlayers.com now and register for a free account. Contest play is already under way and this weekend features an NHC qualifier April 1 and a BCBC qualifier April 2. HorsePlayers.com will offer both "Pick and Pray" and "Live" formats.
"Through research, development and our collaborative efforts, the Breeders' Cup and NTRA—two non-profit organizations dedicated to improving Thoroughbred racing—have created and launched HorsePlayers.com with an eye toward providing a platform that will best serve the contest player," said Alex Waldrop, NTRA president and chief executive officer.
"The Breeders' Cup is thrilled to partner with the NTRA on HorsePlayers.com which will further align the industry's two richest handicapping contests while using contest play to drive interest and engagement in Thoroughbred racing," said Craig Fravel, Breeders' Cup president and CEO.
The NHC and BCBC first collaborated in an official capacity last year with the introduction of the $3 million NHC Tour Bonus—the largest prize ever offered in the handicapping contest world—for any horseplayer that can win the BCBC and NHC successively, in either order. Current NHC champion Ray Arsenault is eligible for a $3 million bonus should he go on to win this year's BCBC at Del Mar.