The Breeders' Cup today announced rule changes for the 2018 Breeders' Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC), Thoroughbred racing's biggest live money tournament, which will be held on November 2 & 3 at Churchill Downs and at participating simulcast and Advanced Deposit Wagering sites. The changes were developed in consultation with the Breeders' Cup Wagering Committee which was created to provide tournament player input on the conduct of the BCBC and related matters. The Wagering Committee is co-chaired by Breeders' Cup Directors Craig Bernick and Mike Rogers. Player representatives include Paul Matties, Joe Appelbaum, Jonathan Kinchen and Tom Quigley.
"We believe that these new rules will strengthen the overall structure and integrity of the BCBC and provide a fun and highly competitive environment for all players," said Craig Bernick, Co-Chairman of the Wagering Committee and Breeders' Cup Director. "We greatly benefitted from the valuable input and deep expertise of the horseplayers on our committee and thank them for their time and effort to help us improve the BCBC and maintain its position as racing's premier live-money tournament. Additionally, we look forward to working with board members and the player representatives to improve and enhance more aspects of the Breeders' Cup wagering experience for our fan base."
Major highlights of the rules changes are:
• Focus on Championship Racing: Players will be required to wager $600 per race on a minimum of 10 of the 14 Breeders' Cup World Championships races over the two days (three of the five Breeders' Cup races on Friday and on seven of the nine Breeders' Cup races on Saturday).
• Stronger Penalties: If a player fails to make one required wager he/she will be penalized 10,000 points, and if a player fails to make more than one required wager he/she will be disqualified. Additionally, a player must wager a minimum of $7,500 over the two-day tournament otherwise he/she will be disqualified.
• Anti-Collusion Rules Reinforced: The revised rules provide further details on how collusion between players is defined and interpreted. Among other things, the new language clearly states that all players must make their final selection independently of every other player in the BCBC and that they are prohibited from coordinating their play with other players. If Breeders' Cup or the host track determines, in their sole discretion, that collusion occurred, the participating player(s) will be disqualified. The BCBC will sanction an independent integrity official to assist in monitoring the tournament.
• Unprecedented Transparency: In an effort to provide complete transparency surrounding tournament play, following the conclusion of the BCBC, Breeders' Cup will publish all tournament wagers made by players who participated in the BCBC.
"As one of the horseplayer representatives on the Breeders' Cup Wagering Committee, I am encouraged by the positive changes made to the BCBC rules and believe they will result in a more competitive and transparent tournament," said Paul Matties, a member of the wagering committee and winner of the 2016 NTRA National Horseplayers Championship.
The complete 2018 BCBC rules can be found at www.BreedersCup.com/BCBC/Rules.