Canterbury Park’s Road to Kentucky Handicapping Contest, the weekly skills test that takes horse players right up to the First Saturday In May, continues Saturday at Tampa Bay Downs as they conduct the $250,000 Sam F. Davis Stakes, a Grade 3 race at 1 1/16 miles. First post of the 12 race card, which also contains three additional stakes, is 11:12 a.m. The Racebook at Canterbury opens at 10 a.m. and entry cards for this free contest can be obtained at the third level Information Center at that time. Don’t be late and get shut out.
R2K focuses on the top 3-year-olds as they compete to earn points that allow them to be entered in the Kentucky Derby. The Sam F. Davis, the 11th race, is an important stepping stone and has drawn a field of eight led by undefeated colt Independence Hall. Trained by Michale Trombetta, Independence Hall won the Jerome to earn 10 Derby points. Ajaaweed draws the rail in the Sam F. Davis. He was second to Shotski in the Remsen on Dec. 7 at Aqueduct. We watched Shotski run second after a tough battle in the Withers last Saturday. Remember that in the R2K contest, Derby prep races are double points and can be a separator when a price horse wins.
NHC This Weekend
Hundreds of horse players are traveling to Las Vegas to compete in the $2.5 million National Horseplayers Championship hosted by the NTRA this Friday through Sunday. Five players qualified for the annual event through Canterbury contests held in 2019. The current Road to Kentucky Contest awards an entry to the 2021 NHC through its Grand Prize Contest. In September are the Ultimate NHC Qualifier and the 24th annual Dog Days of Summer Handicapping Contest, each awarding two NHC entries. Players can qualify to a Satellite contest by playing in the Spring Tune-Up Super Satellites underway now. These supers allow players to win their way in for just $10.
NHC qualified players through Canterbury include Steve Laurent via R2K, Joe Gauthier and Andrew Carlson via Ultimate NHC, and Bruce Meyer and Brian Herrity via Dog Days. Another prominent local, Mike Ferrozzo, qualified elsewhere. Ferrozzo won the NHC Tour in 2017 and also has made it to the final table at the NHC. Standing will be available during the contest on the NTRA website.
Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2 This Friday through Sunday
The Kentucky Derby Future Wager is an opportunity for fans to bet early on the potential Derby horses they think will earn a spot in the starting gate and go on to win the Kentucky Derby. Future Wager bets typically offer larger payouts than betting the same horse on race day. Future Wager Pool 2 opens on Friday, February 7 and closes on Sunday, February 9. Win and exacta wagering will be offered.
Here are the 23 horses offered plus the Field which is all other 3-year-olds.
KDFW Pool 2: February 7 – 9, 2020
KDFW Pool 3 & Kentucky Oaks/ Derby Double Future Wager: March 6 – 8, 2020
KDFW Pool 4: April 3 – 5, 2020