Thursday, March 19, 2009

Just Watching This Weekend

This Saturday's NHC Tour handicapping contests are a live event at Fairgrounds and an XpressBet Live online affair. As much as I like the Big Easy, I wasn't planning on being in N'awleans this weekend, plus the $3,500 ($500 entry fee plus $3,000 bankroll) is just a little too rich for my blood. The XpressBet contest looks like a decent-enough opportunity -- $300 buy-in, top 3 of 400 qualify for Vegas -- but I'll be sitting this one out as well, keeping my powder dry for future opportunities.

I'm back in action for the April 11 contest.


  1. Great blog. Great idea for a blog. Can't believe you resisted Xpressbet Live, though. For all that Magna screws up, Xpressbet's spring tournament series is fabulous!

    They are, for the record:
    1. Beat the Host-9 weeks, no entry, $40 live wagers ($5 win on 8 races). $2500 a week paid out in prizes. If you beat the host, you qualify for the 10th tourney, which gives away 3 entries to NHC, 2 entries to Coast World Series (CWS) and 30 entries to Xpressbet Live. By my calcs, that's over $55,000 paid out to players. Wow.

    2. Xpressbet Live. $100 entry, $200 Live bankroll ($20 win on 10 selected races). Top 3 go to NHC, next 2 go to CWS, top 30 entered into Xpressbet Showdown.

    A note on value: If this tourney had sold out, the math would have been working against the player. My source tells me that they had just over 200. In this case, the tourney paid out over $20,000 more in value (prizes+NHC & CWS Entries & travel). Wow again.

    3. Xpressbet Showdown. Not for the limited bankroll. $500 to enter. $400 live bankroll. (10 $20 win bets each day for two days). Top SIX go to NHC, next four go to CWS.

    I don't think this is a good one to go to if you are just buying the $500 entry. Not great value. 60 people are free-rolling from the previous two tourneys. However, if bankroll isn't an issue and you want to play without traveling, this is a good one, too.

    All in all, Xpressbet should be commended for the spring series they've put together. The only thing they need to improve is the transparency. I'd like to see the number of entrants and after the fact, how people bet. That wouldn't be tough to due, technologically. I mean, an access database could do it. The prize money is a little weak if the thing sold out, but since it doesn't, there's a great advantage to the player.

    Okay, after writing all that, I need to say that I don't work for Magna, Xpressbet or anything else. I just think that they are an excellent series of online tournaments to kick off the year.

    Looking forward to following your quest.

    Steve D

  2. Steve,

    Thanks for the info on Xpressbet, it does sound worthwhile.

    I'm guilty of being a bit of a lackadaisical horseplayer and NHC Tour member over the past month or so, so it's possible that I've overlooking some decent qualifying opportunities. I'm hoping the warm weather perks up my interest in the game and in my quest to qualify.

    Are you on the tour?