I’m keeping it short today, running around like a lunatic trying to finish up three articles and get on a bird to take me to the desert, so let’s cut right to the quick with today’s official description:
“Another day, another edition of the In The Money Players’ Podcast. This is the National Horseplayers’ Championship Preview Show and we wanted to get it released early so players could listen on their way to Vegas. There are short interviews with Scott Carson, Michele Ravencraft, Karen Carey, Tommy Massis, Eliot Honaker, Paul Shurman, Shona Rosenblum, Mike Beychok, Nate Newby, and Dave Gutfreund. We hear predictions for this year’s event and learn about their NHC strategies, data preferences, dining inclinations, and caffeination preferences.”
Enjoy the show — and may you win all your NHC photos!
Prefer to read it? See below.
***Please note this was done with AI and likely contains errors and inaccuracies. ***
You’re listening to the, in the money players podcast. Hello, welcome to the, in the money players podcast. This is show number 14. We will be posting on Wednesday, February 6th. You know what I lied earlier in the week when I said this was going to be a bonus show and we were going to have one later in the week.
This is going to be the second show for this week. And let me tell you it’s a great one. We’ve got so many players signed on to join us today. Almost all of whom will be competing leading in this year’s national HorsePlayers championship. This is our NHC preview show, 11 guests in all. I’m Peter Thomas foreign, a towel back with you in the Brooklyn bunker and the first voice you’re going to hear.
It’s going to be a familiar one. Okay. It’s the first guest on the NHC preview [00:01:00] show. You know him, you love him. He’s the people’s champion. Jonathan kitchen. What’s up PTF. What’s the word? The word is I’ve been having a lot of fun talking to tournament players throughout this show. I’m going to ask a lot of the same questions.
We’re going to get different perspectives on them. We’re going to start with you. We’ll go rapid fire here. Cause we got a lot of people to get to. When are you flying into Vegas? I’m flying in on Thursday. Someone, someone has it out for me. I, uh, uh, the, my son has dad’s day. It’s the thing where you go to recess and you go to lunch with him, all the dads come, I don’t know where these dads work, where they all can get off of work, but never, um, And they have it twice a year.
And guess when those times are the Thursday before the NHC and the Thursday before the breeders. So I’m not going to let my kid be the kid whose dad’s not there because he’s in Las Vegas. So I’ll say that, and I’m going to head straight to the airport. I land at like six o’clock on, uh, [00:02:00] on a Thursday. You don’t want to be that guy.
Huh? No I’m, I mean, don’t get me wrong. I’m not judging that guy, but, uh, I, I don’t want the other parents to judge me. Our friend, Michael Maloney told a story about when, when his son stood up and said, my dad’s a professional horse player. And she called them in for a meeting saying that he was lying in class.
So Mike had to let them know that he really was, and I don’t want Austin to have to experience that yet stories like that. And many more bedding with an edge, reach out. If you’re looking for a copy data, JK, what data do you use? DRF P is a little bit of time form U S workout reports and, uh, any, any information I can get from our various friends around the country that know a little bit more about how a horse might be doing, uh, than me I’ve sent out my, my texts already are you live in the seventh?
I’ve already done all of that stuff. Um, I got those out to some very, uh, unsuspecting people, but, uh, yeah, just whatever I can kind of get my hands on. But mostly that the base of it would be the DRF formulator PPS [00:03:00] as well as time form U S okay. Sound you hear in the background is a million trainers blocking JK for the next four days.
Dinner plans, dinner plans, while in Vegas, what are yours? Yeah, Nick Tamra, this is going to make him mad. I think it probably makes you a little bit mad. I’d like to keep my options open. I, I don’t know where everyone’s going and I don’t want to end up sitting at a dinner with 29 people and 14 of them. I don’t like, and I don’t want to go eat this when I want to eat that.
And I just want to keep it but clean and keep it open and hope I can just hop on with someone else. But to be honest with you, I’m not too concerned. I’ll walk over to the Venetian and eat at one of my favorite restaurants in Vegas, which is noodles. Very unassuming. Asian restaurant pretty much right next to, uh, the Venetian sports book.
If you get the right table, you can actually watch the races while you’re eating the, uh, the Asian cuisine. So it’s one of my favorite places. Noodles is good, but you realize you’re just not an adult in this regard, right? Will you cop to that at least? No. [00:04:00] We’ll argue about it. Off-air of a free, I’m a free sneer.
You’re something inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks at treasure Island. Outside Starbucks for sure. Treasure Island is great. However, there’s a smell in there in the morning with the smoke in the den. And I like to get out for a little bit, smell some, uh, some fresh Vegas air if that actually exists.
And there’s a bench, right? When you walk out on your way. Uh, to, to Starbucks. And there’s usually something interesting happening when you look to the left on that bench, I’ll let you, uh, use your imagination for some of the various things you can see there at five o’clock in the mall. We hope you do not choose to Periscope.
Let’s put it that way. How many times have you qualified for the NHC? 2015, 16, 17, 18. 19 is my fifth. NHG five times for JK. I’ll let you tell the story. Cause it’s on the list of questions. What was your best fit?
Oh, [00:05:00] Pete, this is, I mean, look, it happened. I mean, you fell in love with me. You’re not going to mention Divisadero in this answer. That’s the only thing I can hang my hat on. First HDR I went to is the one where I had two entries in the top 10. I finished seventh and 11th. It should have been seventh and 10th.
They changed the rule. So one bite, everybody knows the rules, our friend with the pizza reviews, but you know, it’s, it is what it is. I’m glad to have, have had that success. And I just need to try to repeat it and it doesn’t, it doesn’t do me any good at this point. Any predictions for this year, I think the mavens going, gonna make a little rough, he seems kind of angry, frustrated, uh, you know, angry, frustrated, focused.
And I think that some people can be, uh, Distracted by those emotions. And I think he’s the type of guy that could probably hone in. I think he’ll make a little bit of run. I think that there’ll be some, some interesting moments where he’s in the mix. Uh, but I do predict that, uh, someone from, um, the two tables that I associate myself with will make it to the final table.
Uh, [00:06:00] the Mathias, the crew, and then the table that, uh, you know, me, Nick tamarillo Marshall Graham, that situation, I think we’ll we’ll have someone do well, uh, well enough to make it to the final table. Godspeed, my friend IPTs and speaking of familiar voices, you’re sure to know this guy, please state your name, age and profession.
Scott Carson, 54 currently. Retired. I like the sound of that retired, or maybe I should say him say professional horseplayer somewhere between retired and a professional horse player. I like it. Right. If the professional horseplaying doesn’t get better soon. I’m going to be unemployed. When do you like to arrive in Vegas for the NHC?
Well, I always used to come in two days before the contest started, but last year I came in one day earlier and that made a big [00:07:00] difference. So then I decided that, you know, since that was the first time that I cashed, I decided, Hey, I’ll move it up another day. So I got here last night and I’m already a well into handicapping.
How many times have you qualified for the NHC? I’ve qualified 11 times. What is your best finish? My best minister was sixth last year, but I should say that, um, my other best finish was my first year was 23rd, which that year it didn’t even cash. They only paid the top 20. What data do you use to help you handicap for the NHC?
I use DRF for, um, a lot of stuff, workouts and. Uh, past performance, uh, you know, replays and trainer patterns. I also use the third graph sheets and, um, I use a couple of other things that I don’t, I’ve never really [00:08:00] told anybody, but they’re not really critical of my main two. Um, my main two methods are with DRF and third graph sheets.
Do you go to the inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks at TIAA? I prefer the inside Starbucks, but I will use the outside if the inside is closed, which it is sometimes when I wake up at wacky hours, a word on strategy for this year’s event. How do you, I think that the two, two really important things for me this year one is starting early so that I have time to handicap and find those potential opportunities.
So, uh, that’s the first, most important one. And then the second one is when I do re get reduced time, which the third day you always do, no matter how prepared you are. The important thing is to skip really nag cheap claimers, because you waste a lot [00:09:00] of time on those things. And, um, as ed DeRosa just, uh, uh, tweeted out, they hit CA you know, capper horses happen much less often.
With these cheap planners, like 10,000 and lower that’s great advice. Terrific. Any dinner plans for the weekend so far? Yes. Well, the Yardbird. Love that the Yardbird across the street at the Venetian is amazing. And so, um, you know, going there one night, um, we will do fills here Phil steakhouse, uh, another night.
And, um, other than that, uh, up in the air, I might crash your yard, bird dinner. I’ve just decided now. Not seriously. Well it’s Wednesday. Oh, I would have to sprout wings as a certain race. Kali says to make that happen. One last question for you, Scott, any predictions about this year’s event? I think it’s going to be pretty crazy.[00:10:00] I just, I feel like, you know, last year there weren’t that many cappers. I think this year you’re going to have a lot more. And, um, the early weather forecasts showing a good chance for all the turf racing to be on for the entire weekend. Fascinating. I think there’s going to be higher scoring this year.
Yeah, we have not seen that much turf racing. I don’t feel like in the last couple of years, that’s a very interesting development, great stuff from you for more from Scott folks should check out public handicapper.com. Thanks for your Tom, my friend. All right. Thank you, Pete now to welcome. One of the key people in putting on what I call the coolest horseplayer party of the year, the national HorsePlayers championship, Michelle Raven craft of the NTRA Michelle.
What’s up. Oh, just out in T I’ve been here since Friday, getting everything ready for all the HorsePlayers. You’ve answered my first question. I was going to ask when you [00:11:00] like to get in a full week in advance. Sounds like the answer. Yes. Get him Friday work all weekend and then we should have everything prepared.
Um, this afternoon, Wednesday, ready to go for Thursday morning. How many NHCs have you been to. My very first one was at Bally’s. So I think I’ve probably been to about 13. 13 is an impressive number. There’s a few players who’ve been to more, but not many. Do you have any dinner plans for the weekend? I always make dinner plans and then I always end up canceling.
So you’ll usually find me at the, yeah, the TA hanging out in the casino. You’re the anti, Jonathan kinship. He refuses to make a dinner plan. You make the plan, but then don’t go through with it. Exactly. I imagine life spins out of control, dealing with all the various characters who are going to be on hand over the course of the weekend.
When you’re at treasure Island, do you go to the inside Starbucks or the [00:12:00] outside Starbucks? I actually go to the CVS because I don’t drink coffee. I have to have a diet Coke first thing every morning. So that’s my first stop. Every morning is CVS. And I do see, I get to walk by the race book. So I get to see a lot of familiar faces going to the CVS.
They’re up bright and early, already in the race book, studying any predictions for this year’s NHC. Who do I think is going to win? Well, it could be, who’s going to win. It could be something that you think’s going to happen. Something about your own work schedule. I’m like really excited about all the bonuses opportunities that we have over $20 million of bonus opportunities.
Probably over 10 players playing for, you know, millions of dollars. And so that makes me really excited because I think one of these days somebody is going to hit it. Who knows it might be this year. Michelle, thank you. You’re playing hurt. I can hear in your voice. Thanks for taking time to come on the, in the money players podcast.
I appreciate it. And I know the listeners do too. [00:13:00] And thanks for having me and see you soon. Peace. Now I’d like to welcome for her first appearance on the player’s podcasts. Somebody I’ve wanted to have on for a long time, a long time listener and a horse player. Who’s made quite an impact in her brief time playing tournaments over the last couple of years.
Karen, Carrie, how are you today? I am very well. Thank you. That’s quite the introduction. Thank you, Pete. You, you deserve one. I’ll never forget reading the Belmont. Press release when you shouted me out as one of the people that you listened to to get a tournament information and horse racing news. And my favorite part about the whole thing was you mentioned me
well, you are the man. Yeah, for sure. Well, I love both of you guys. You’re both great together and Greg chemistry and, uh, provide so much information. Yeah. I definitely am an avid listener and definitely [00:14:00] you have kept me. Into wanting to do more and more of the contest with a human JK talking about it all the time.
There’s no question about that. Fantastic. How did you start playing in tournaments? Where did the, where did you get the bug? Well, first of all, I lived in Saratoga. I’ve had the home since 2009, so I definitely have been after races and very involved in going to the races and handicapping and playing the races.
But. You mean would have to be, you know, that that’s why our show, the horse players. Um, I loved it. I thought it was great. And it certainly was, looked like a lot of fun. And then you guys just following up with the contest and your conversations about it, it just seemed really something that I always wanted to do.
So I started out. Probably playing in the, the low rollers, for sure. I mean, just to get your feedback, you know, how do you, how do you start? You just have to get [00:15:00] into it. And the first contest that I could get into was those low rollers. And from there I went to the online. Would you, you know, talk it about it all the time and started playing it more of the online and on my own.
I just started following players that were very good players that had a lot of success online, finding. You know how they went about and how their picks were. And then I just started planting. I mean, there’s no substitute for actually playing. It just became something that I wanted to do, like very much so.
And at the start of last year, I, at the very beginning of the year, I was like, okay, this shit, I was ready for it. Uh, lifestyle wise. And it was just a phenomenal year. I don’t know what else to say. I just got lucky in some spots and it was a lot of fun, a lot of fun. First time going out to the NHD. So I’m looking forward to that.
It’s going to be very interesting to see with all those [00:16:00] races, how, you know, the style of the way I handicap, I was hoping to play out, but I’m looking forward to it. You talk about the style that you handicap. What data do you use? I use the GRS. I do like the print it form because what I do is I can too.
Like I’ll get the rat sheets and I’ll put the last four numbers on the top of each horse in the race. And then I go about adding different figures, you know, um, different angles onto that sheet. So yes, I’m very much attached to the printed sheets, but I use my computer because I pull up the DRS and I’m using time for the last.
Probably year and a half and liking that a lot. So I add that to it. I’m watching replace that’s basically it. So, you know, with this amount of races, I think that’s why I said it’s going to be, you know, it’s definitely, I’ve got my work cut [00:17:00] out for me, everybody a lot. There’s no doubt about it. When are you flying into Vegas?
I am flying into Vegas on Thursday. So, um, yeah, early Thursday morning. Yeah. It’s uh, it’s great. And your shows are fabulous and I’m glad you’re caring with the podcast. What’s awesome. Thank you. Thank you very much. We appreciate the support. How many entries do you have for the NHC this year? I only have one.
I came very close to winning a second entry. In the Saratoga contest. I think I was 56 and that was one slot behind a couple of the online as well. So yeah, just going out with one, but for my first time out there, I guess that’s probably a good thing. Might be a little bit easier. Stay a little more focused.
I could definitely see that. [00:18:00] Do you have any dinner plans for this weekend? Something we’re asking everybody on the show. Dinner plans? Not really. No. Um, I am going out there Thursday and Paul Sherman was nice enough to ask if I wanted to sit with his group. So I’m planning to sit. Yeah. During the day it’s his group.
He’s been great by the way. So, you know, to be able to meet somebody like him right at the onset is awesome. He’s been very supportive and just great. I mean, I would have to Caitlin, that was one of my favorites. Tournament’s to go to and what a great tournament they run out there. And as far as the organization goes, can’t tra they’re fabulous.
I mean, they was so organized and also the players and the committee that puts the tournament together. So w what is the word I’m looking for? They, they honored. Okay. Give me an example. They honored [00:19:00] Judy Wagner’s husband. Jared in a tournament day. Um, and that was just great. I mean, she’d be out there for the first time and she’d be part of this whole community of people that have known one another, that highly respect one another.
They had everybody stand up and give them a toast and I never met him, but I did get Judy lovely, lovely woman. That was just a great weekend out there. And. Brian Wagner, a tournament legend in his own. Right. I should send around the article, Theresa Janero wrote about your rise to prominence on the tour.
Some good stuff there. I’ll make sure to amplify that. Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. Well, you know, as far as QP, you provide so much information and some of the early things that. No, I, I just focused on was just getting as much information and reading. We’re talking about 10 years ago, you know, picking up in handicap, the block in downtown Saratoga, but then your books and winning contest player [00:20:00] was one of my earlier books.
Now, you know, the thing has everybody that’s in that book, a meeting,
which is great. It’s really something. I didn’t plan on getting so much praise from you in this article. I feel like I should send you a check. Yeah, no, I know. And, uh, I also have setting with the edge. That’s a, that’s a heavy book, but really good acute as well. Well, thank you very much. That one, I can praise that one from the bottom of my heart, because it was really all Mike and me just writing stuff down, but I do appreciate the support.
There’s no substitute for project planning. So. But you do have to start. You just have to start, you know, I remember the very first podcast, you know, the very first race I had to bet it and you know, you’re just betting every race. And then after you’re playing for awhile, you do relax a bit and single out the racist that you, you liked playing and feel a lot more confident.
And then of course the Belmont, I was there [00:21:00] with my sons and their great avid handicapper. So, and the Belmont is something that we do every year. We’ve been going for. I guess five or six years now, and, uh, always had the success out there. So it was great to have them there with me and we, uh, capsuled that car together.
And, uh, we won and it was, I can’t just say I won I’m there with them and they were very much part of it. We did it. And that was. Fight today. I mean, to go from just starting in this to something like that, it was super exciting, winning a major, always a big deal. And I know there were a lot of people out there rooting for you who will continue to do so over the course of this weekend.
Last question for you, any predictions about what’s going to happen out in Las Vegas? I think there’ll be a lot of attention on David, right? Absolutely. He’s part of this show as well. Yeah. [00:22:00] Yeah, he’s a great player. And that was such a phenomenal run of his in the end. Incredible. I did feel bad for our man Paul Sherman.
I thought he was going to get it done there. I did too. I did too. I thought for sure that was quite a shocker, but yeah, he’s a great player. I teach history. He’s um, It’s amazing. He’s playing for what? Like $6 million. Got it. One last question I lied. I’ll hit you with one more. When you talked about looking at players online, successful players, trying to see what they did.
What’s something you learned by doing that, that improved your game as a handicapper and a tournament player. They will also play CHOC Anthony Trezza. So I was following him for a while with him and, you know, like they chalk and the other players, and he had so much success online [00:23:00] and I can like, see how he played.
And he could definitely play a few chocolates picks as well as, you know, the long shots and spread it out. But yes, he, on his winning ticket entries, he had. Usually a few good, very low jockey that I kind of followed in that, that way. I liked that idea. I think you, you know, you’d have to, uh, go for Spanx, but I think you should lock up some of the smaller.
I can think of a certain podcast co-host who definitely agrees with that sentiment. Karen, come by and say hi out there. I’ll be on with Steve Beck all weekend. And we’d love to have you on there. If you get a free minute and we will talk to you soon. Okay. Thanks. Great talking to you. Cheers. And now for his first appearance on the new podcast, a guest on the old podcast, and we’re going to have him for a much longer visit soon, but wanted him as part of this [00:24:00] NHC pre-game show one of the most popular guys in the tournament space, Tommy, the hammer masses.
How are you today? My friend. Excellent. Peter, thanks for having me on and hopefully more than 30 seconds. Like the last time, when are you flying in to Vegas? I am flying. I’m leaving Florida Wednesday. I don’t know between eight and 10 somewhere there. Nine o’clock leaving. How many times have you played in the NHC?
I don’t know. I would guess five. What data do you use to prepare for the event? I’m guessing I won’t be able to use Clockers, uh, I guess the daily racing form. Is about it. Why do you say you won’t have clock or report? Well for maybe for Gulf stream, but for where else? Right then Anita. Right. But, but I don’t really, you know what, there’s only, I only trust brutal.[00:25:00] I know Bruno. I know Bruno, if he’s, I I’ve seen where he’s played in a contest, right. And only bet what he’s put out. I don’t trust other people. He just worries too much about being good and right around on those days, you know what I mean? I told you the bleep man was going to be busy when we had you on the show.
Oh, okay. I won’t do that again. Sorry. Do you go to the inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks at treasure Island? Probably the outside, but I don’t know. I don’t smoke cigars anymore. I used to go for my walks, smoke a cigar, but I’m not a Starbucks guy. I’m getting so used to making my own coffee. I don’t know if there’s one of those little things in the room.
Yeah. It’s probably going to end. You have to put $2 in and turn the thing to put on the coffee machine. Do you have any dinner plans while you’re out there? No brother is coming in for some vacuum cleaner thing [00:26:00] Saturday. Your brother, a vacuum cleaner salesman. Yeah, yeah. Store and his salesman. Who’s at the Jenner red horseplayer who finally found out I’m the same Tommy masters that won the, you know, he’s read about me, but never put that we’re brothers together, even though we have our rare last name.
So I’m his handicapping service now. And then we’re probably going to be eating hot dogs and playing horses Saturday, Sunday night. I know it feels to me like you might have trouble walking by a race book. If the lights are on. Is that fair to say about you? No, not really. The last thing I want to do with the horses as a living.
So the last thing I really want to do is play horses. I’m not one of those guys that have, you know, you go to you go to people’s homes. They have TPG on, or our HPI on that’s the only channel they have on their TV. 24 seven. That’s not me, but I will play, I can’t pick up the foreman. Handicap. Any breed species?
No, I’ll, I’ll be, if my brother wants [00:27:00] me to help, help his buddy out, that’s what we’ll be doing. Is the buddy playing in the NHC? No, no, no. Just hanging out at the vacuum cleaner convention plan horses. Not too bad. Yeah. Yeah. So we’re going to hug or we’re actually, we are going to go see, probably going to go see a absent that Caesars palace synth.
Interesting. All I seen is. Somebody sent me a video once of this quiet little shy girl that comes up and does her act right. And she does a little puppet act and I’m sold. You have to find that on YouTube. We’ll put a link in the blog, watch it first. I’d watch. Sure. What’s your best finish at the NHC? Oh no, I don’t even think I can.
Anything to even come close to anything $40. Okay. Any predictions for this weekend? Yes. I kept keep dreaming [00:28:00] about it. Do tell. Yeah. I promised that date, but I really liked the guy. Dave good friends is a good friend. He’s on the show. Okay. So what, what I, what I dreamed is that he wins it right? And that after he’s he realized what he has done the damage he has caused he’s at the top of the pirate ship, ready to jump.
And I have to talk him down. That’s Tommy, Massis everybody player to watch in any tournament in which he competes, though, there’s a limit to the amount of hammering he can do in the NHC format. Thanks. Pete. Can’t wait to see everybody out in Vegas, state your name, age, occupation, and place of birth.
Elliot tonical I’m 41 and I live in Louisville, Kentucky. I’m in sales, and I understand you own a piece of a race horse, or two, maybe couple that our listeners would have heard of. So I was in a couple of Donegal syndicates still in, and a couple of Donegal syndicates, the [00:29:00] most famous horse you would have heard of.
And this was the first syndicate I was ever involved with was keen ice. So you all, you probably heard of him. He beat one. That was pretty good. As I recall, he did. Yep. That’s his claim to fame and, um, uh, just a great experience for me and my family. And. Um, had a little, a little, a small little, little piece, but there a lot of, a lot of fun, a lot of memories and a lot of pictures around my house.
That’s for sure. He’s not the only podcast famous horse that you’ve been a part of. Yep. There’s art Glo. Uh, there’s a few that have ruined some tickets for you guys. That’s for sure. But you get that’s your own fault. Donegal should pop up, uh, as a, as a threat to tickets. Whenever they show up. So you guys are slobbering up to include them.
So I can’t, uh, I can’t stress that enough, especially with three-year-old Turkers on big days. Now, were you part of the one that won on Arlington million day in the three-year-old race last year? [00:30:00] I was, that was Kerrick and, uh, I was dumb enough not to bad. I think character was like 32, 33 to one. I did help a friend who the pick four and I think it paid like.
It was, it was a big pick four late pick four late tick boxes. It does make me feel better to hear that you didn’t bet either, actually that, that soothes my soul to some degree. Well, I feel like I already have wind money on it. Right? When you have the steak and a small piece of it, you already essentially have a wind at, on it.
Anyway. So, but yeah, that was, uh, I know, I feel like I bet the lower price and not the higher price. It makes no sense. I guess you have more confidence. Yes. But when you’re all in, you already are in, when you already have the skin in the game, it should be the exact opposite of that. I would say. I agree. I agree.
But, uh, no character should be running back there in a couple of weeks. So he’s exciting. And. Um, it’s just been a lot of fun and that it’s a great, it’s been a great, it’s been a great experience and a good way to go in for a small, [00:31:00] um, invest relatively small investment. And we get a lot of the great perks and I’ve got to do the walk through Derby and travel around and.
Yeah. The only time I’m going to share a Toga is when keynotes one of the drivers. It’s the only time I’ve ever been. Amazing. We might have to try to fix that this year. Couple of rapid fire questions now about the NHC. So I can let you get on with your day. We were yapping a bit off air before this started.
When he flying in. Tomorrow I get there at like 1245 and tomorrow being Thursday. Yep. And I it’s frustrating. I see all these people on Twitter that have gotten out there. Does that put you at a disadvantage? The time thing, the time zone changes? The thing that kills me and I’ll have my kids calling me on the way to school at 7:00 AM Eastern, which is for Vegas time.
And so I’ll have to get up. Um, but that’ll be my time to study. I go down to the breakfast place at PI and study and eat breakfast and, and kind of get going and try to stay on [00:32:00] Eastern time. And it’s, that’s the only disadvantage, I think the time, when did your preparation start? I think Saturday when the fairgrounds came out.
Yeah, it was Saturday when fairgrounds came out, I printed everything and I wish I retracted that. So fairgrounds, so I’ve got I’m ready for hopefully Saturdays come out today being Wednesday. Um, but I started, yeah, I’m pretty good for Friday’s card. I feel really good about Friday’s card. What data do you use?
We use formulator. I use stats, race lens. I’ll also use, I’ll also look at pace projector on time for them. Um, and then I’ll look at the clock or reports, you know, as we get closer, those are my, those are my main things. How many times have you qualified? This is my fourth time. And what’s your best finish?
So far 15th, pretty good. Who years ago? That’s very good. Just $5 away though, from the final table. Um, so it’s still [00:33:00] kind of bitter I’ll take it. It was a great run and great thrill. Any predictions about this year, I’ve got two seats this year and I had two seats that year. I just, I want them to have both in make the cut would be kind of a preliminary goal, but.
I love to have one on the top 20 again, that would be great. Um, but I’m dreaming of the big check and, um, I feel like I got nothing to lose. Right? I’ve already, I qualified relatively cheap this year. I didn’t invest as much money as I have in the past. So, um, it’s just a great experience. You talked about this.
I mean, the takeout we know is not the greatest, but it’s, I think you said Paul Paul Sherman, or someone said Paul Sherman, it’s the experience. And it’s like, no other it’s an event it’s just. Uh, that’s why I get upset when people complain about the takeout and about, but it’s, it is the experience that like no other, um, and it’s, I’m just, I’m excited for the energy and just, you know, everything from people within the program, to the characters, you see, it’s something like no other.
So I’m looking forward to it. [00:34:00] Elliot Godspeed out there. Thank you so much. For many, this is the guy who has the best resume in the history of the NHC. He’s a former NHC tour champion. He almost went one better this year and won his second NHC tour. I’m talking of course, about Paul Sherman. Paul, how are you today?
Fine. Thank you very much for your kind words. I’m fine. I’m sitting here in my room in Vegas, watching the sunrise beautiful day. I’ve got my computer out. I’ve got. Uh, my, my sheets. I’ve got, uh, well, I’m all set to go and wanted to start. So, Paul, just a question about winning the tour and then playing in the NHC, particularly relevant with Dave good Freud and playing for the 6 million.
I was looking back at the stats and you have the best finish in the event. Of a tour winner with your sixth place finish. Other than you, since [00:35:00] the advent of the tour, it looks like the best the tour winner has done is about 170 second. Is that just random or is there potentially a causal negative effect for the tour winner?
When it comes to showing up at the NHC with all the attention, all the added pressure of trying to take home that giant bonus. Well, Pete, I think there’s a lot of pressure. There’s a lot of attention and I believe that a lot of these, uh, champions who’ve who’ve shown how great handicap is. There are, they are, uh, throughout the course of the year, tend to change, change what they do.
This is a problem with a lot of, a lot of, uh, participants who come in
Looking at race replays, they’re going to use different things that they use to get there. I think that a lot of people included the tour champions tend to change the way the handicap. You wrote an article [00:36:00] about one of the tour champions a few years ago, who was describing how he or she was going to change the way, uh, he or she was handicapping.
And I’m thinking, how, how can you know why we’ve saying something that brought you so much success? So this is, this is not only, not only, uh, Something for towards champions, but something for regular players. Who’ve just because it’s a big tournament. That’s because of the NAC, you know what I’m saying?
The way you’re handicapping, you don’t start looking at, at, uh, at sheets. You’ve never looked at sheets. You don’t start looking at race replays. If you don’t know what race looks like, you look at what, what got you there, you, you use what got you there and, you know, even do well, you know, if it hits for you, it doesn’t, but don’t change your style just because it’s the NHA.
That’s not a mistake. I can see Dave Freud making, not only does he have all the success in horse racing tournaments, but this is a guy who’s literally been under the bright lights [00:37:00] at the final table in poker tournaments, playing for hundreds of thousands, as well as already having a final table appearance at the NHC.
Do you think this is a concern? I don’t think it’s a concern for them. Um, in fact, the, the anemia who the final table. Uh, before the 500 people started, I went up to him and said, I think you’re going to win, uh, through this. That’s the kind of personality he has and he’s used to it. So he has as good as, not as any.
Of winning this thing, a big and home, I guess it would be $6 million for him. Yeah, not too bad. I know you guys were competing tooth and nail on the tour, but as so often happens, it sounded like your friendship actually deepened despite competing against one another. What advice do you have for Dave heading into this opportunity?
Well, I, again, just do what he’s done all along. Um, he’s a great player. He’s always been a great player. And I think that, that just, if he could [00:38:00] relax, he should relax. And if you could have fun, it’s just trying to have some fun with it. Um, but I, um, I’m eager to see, I think, I think he has as good a shot as anybody who’s had to, uh, win the tour and win the tour championship.
He’s also, he’s also going in. Awful role. And I’m a big believer in, yeah. I think that that people who have been playing throughout and playing up to the NHC have a little advantage over people. Who’ve been a bit off for awhile. My, my brother has in played in a, in a, in a big tournament a few months, and he’s, he’s worried about, uh, coming in off the layoffs and I said, well, you’re coming in fresh.
So maybe that’ll be good. But I think there’s a sort of down having, having competed after the very end. I know going right from there to the MHC. I think that’s a plus. Now you’re a positive person. So maybe this question is just going to seem totally loaded to you, but any disappointment in the wake of such a [00:39:00] close call on this year’s NHC tour?
Well, like we talked about, I can’t play defense. I did the best I could. And like, we’ve also talked about not only to win these tournaments, do you have to be. The best handicap of that day. You also have to be luckier than Evelyn that day. And, you know, I did the best I could. I traveled around, I plan all the tournaments I could, but Dave was just great.
You know, he was, he was, uh, he had the run of a lifetime. I ran into him. I actually sat close to him at the, at a mammoth tournament in early, early December. And he was, he was probably in that 30 or 40th place in the tour and we were talking and he was saying, you know, I only have a few towards scores. I think I’m going to try when I’m going to go to LaSalle.
Um, and you know, I can’t, I can’t catch you, but maybe I’ll come in top five. Maybe I’ll get CCBC spot. And, um, and [00:40:00] here’s what I’m thinking. I’m thinking, boy, I hope he does win today. Because if he wins, then that means that a few of the people who are behind me or to have one, and that will protect me right now.
He just said he didn’t win. But then he goes out to LaSalle and wins that. And then the next week I’m playing in that one of the $75 online tournament, uh, with 500 people and. I see, he comes in certain, my brother calls me cause definitely came in third because, well, that was the eighth. So I didn’t know that was East, got two more scores to galleries.
He’s right there with you. I suppose you still got a winner, another tournament. It’s not going to win something. And uh, and he did and he did. So he, he deserves it. Uh, he, he, uh, he’s a great handicap and he always has been. And, uh, I’m not disappointed that I’m not going for. Uh, for the, uh, for the extra 5 million.
Yes, but a lot less pressure on me, a lot less pressure. But [00:41:00] if I do win the tour, if I deal with the Annecy this year, he will have cost me $500.
How many times have you qualified in total? I have qualified, I think, 17 years in a row. I believe your best finish. Third, third behind, um, John Carty. When it was at red rock and then I had two, six one, one, one, one, and one, the tour and, uh, another, uh, you know, the first spinal table. Contests trivia that Conti NHC first article I ever wrote about tournaments, I barely knew what they were.
I wrote a piece interviewing John for horseplayer magazine, and I probably wrote your name in the article before we’d ever met. What are your dinner plans for this weekend? My identity plans. Well, tonight we have a traditional dinner myself and my brother Mitcham and then Scott Carson, or go [00:42:00] into Yardbird.
chicken and waffles. That’s tonight, tomorrow night. I’m not sure it’ll be, uh, it’ll be, uh, a lot of people I think then you catch what you can, you know, 10 minutes, 10 minutes, a dinner back to start in, uh, a little break back to studying. So no, no real dinner plans until a really tonight. Tonight. Is it tomorrow night?
Well, we’ll play it by ear. And then it’s on the fly. When you’re a TA, do you go to the inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks?
You’re one of those guys I’m going to know. I stayed at the Nissan across the street. I love T I love the fact that they run the tournament. They treat us very well, but I prefer that the nation fair enough. And. Not only is it, is it it’s a nice facility, but I like to be able to yeah. Get out of life. It got some hour.
And if I was still in GI, [00:43:00] I would never leave. Um, and I believe it’s important too, to be able to stretch your legs. It’s the fresh air and walk around. And you know, I’ve, I’ve been at tournament’s course failed world series, the Orleans, where I’ve been inside of the ballroom before for five days. Um, so I like to sack that.
Definitely. So I like the addition and it’s close by to get out, I guess, may I can walk around. It’s a little, a little different just to see her, any predictions for this year’s event, with regard to the NDC, the reason I’ve had some good success here is because you have a better sense of seeing races that meet your criteria for, uh, plays you like with all the races and all the tracks.
They either will hit or they don’t hit. And when they do hit, you’ll do well. If don’t hit them, you just had a good time. That’s Paul Sherman, NHC hall of Famer. Thanks so much for your time today. Thank you, Pete. And now I’d like to welcome to the NHC preview show [00:44:00] a woman responsible for one of my favorite stories thus far heading into this year’s and HC Shona, Rosenblum.
How are you today? I’m good. How are you? Things are going really well. Trying to clear the decks before heading out to Vegas. And that leads me directly to my first question for you. When do you plan on arriving out that way? I’m actually headed to the airport in about 45 minutes. Perfect. Perfect. How many NHCs have you attended?
I’ve been to two before this one actually worked a couple for Breeder’s cup. Uh, in years past. So I’ve been as a guest before, but never as a player. So, um, I’m excited to get out there. This is your first time qualifying for the NHC. How did you punch your ticket? It’s a cool story. So I’ve been playing in theaters for the last few months.
I had a super busy summer, but in the fall and after breeders cuts, things kind of slowed down a little bit. So, um, I was [00:45:00] messing around and played in a feeder. Uh, it was $18 center. And ended up and I’d won a few theaters in the past. And I was like, Oh, this is actually not, not too tough. So I’d had some disappointments, but in this case I won the theater and that the, I realized that I needed to play in the theaters that were the day before, because I didn’t have time to handicap when it was an early bird.
So I played in one the day before I qualified for a Sunday tournament. And, uh, I really just put the work in and Pete Redondo and I sat down at the table. We were up at my folks house and we sat down on the table and we were like, don’t bother them. We’re qualifying so many chiefs. He had a seat and I had a seat in the, in the qualifier and we went through, meet me, talk to him.
We talked it out. He made some decisions. I made other decisions, obviously. And, uh, at the end of the day, my, uh, entry heat it up a little bit. And I made a few calls at the end and ended up qualifying. I ended up making second place by like 40 [00:46:00] cents. Beautiful, beautiful. Unless anybody think that Shona is.
Somebody there, uh, listening to, uh, Pete Ritondo or anybody else’s advice. I’ve seen you out there in the backyard at Saratoga with the pen and the form. And no you’ve been playing in these tournaments for a few years. How did you get involved in the first place? It’s funny because I realized that people thought Pete qualified for me.
And when I, when I found that out, a few people made comments. I was like, no, no. Like we were both. We were both in that qualifier then. And I’m the one who ended up qualifying and know we do the homework together a lot. But, um, I like to tease team Recondo a lot because they’re petrified of any odds that are.
Anywhere close to being considered Shaki in this case talk got me home because I, I, like I said, I qualified by 40 cents. So if I hadn’t had that talk to your pick in the beginning, I wouldn’t be where I was at the end of that day, but I got into it. This actually, this is, this is [00:47:00] a crazy story. I learned to read the racing form three years ago.
So it was out at the NAC. Uh, I think it was 2016. I was covering for Breeder’s cup. You know, we were giving away BCBC seats, but the top point, uh, winner on Friday and Saturday each got a see, and then that NC champion gets to see, uh, additionally there’s a bonus associated. So if you win the BCBC, you’re eligible for a $3 million bonus.
If you win the NHC and then if you win the NHC, you’re eligible for that bonus to rolling bonus, you may want to promote that program a little bit. What else am I supposed to do? I’m fitting their treasure Island for three days in a row, and everyone’s having fun gambling and I didn’t know what was going on or how to do it.
And so I had FOMO and I just put the form down and I started walking around to people and asking what’s this what’s that? What’s this? I think that’s the first use of FOMO in podcast history. We’ll let the older listeners Google. I remember Matt Bernier sat down with me for half hour and kind of pointed out some of the highlights.
And [00:48:00] then various members of team or Sendo were helping me figure it out as well from the other people who were there. So I was like, okay, I think I know enough to place a few bets. I didn’t want to go to the bedding windows because in the beginning I was intimidated by growing up because there was all these different ways to place a bet.
And also, I didn’t want to get in the way of any of the players. So I ended up downloading transpires. Um, I downloaded twin fires and I signed up and everything I placed for best that day, I ended up betting $44 and I got back, I don’t know, like two 60 or something. I was like, this is easy. Like, I’m going to keep doing this.
And one of the first bits I placed into inspires with a $20 bet on a course called social media. Perfect for you with your company, a grand slam social. Exactly and it wasn’t a hunch bet the horse. I liked the horse. Well, that’s an impressive ROI to be sure you [00:49:00] chose some good initial tutors in the game as well.
Not a bad way to get started and not a bad way for the story to continue. That’s for sure. Let me ask you a question about Mr. Rotunda. Now, from what I understand, he did not end up punching his ticket to Vegas, to play in the tournament. Will he be along? Will you give him a little pocket change to go in the casino and play slots while you’re up there playing horses?
How’s that going to go? So, uh, initially grand slam social was hired by NPRA to come cover the event. So I was always going to any seat, but I was going to work like I have in the past. So when I qualified, I ended up bringing another one of the members of the grand slam teams in to work on the project.
So there’s two girls from grand plan, Molly, Miguel, and cannon Christofferson. They’re there to work and I’m there to play. And we had this whole idea, you know, we’re always thinking about content creation [00:50:00] and things like that. And we had this funny video idea where we would. Uh, position P as the, as my plus one, they have, you know, how they have like the spouses, like there’s an itinerary and things to do.
So we’re going to follow Pete as he goes and get, you know, go shopping like this whole kind of, and then cut to me like. Studying and playing. Um, yeah, he’ll be out there. That is fantastic. And I’m glad he’s not taking his lack of qualification too hard. It sounds like he’ll be willing to participate in the social media part of it, which is great.
I can’t wait to see that that’s going to be fun. What data do you use in your handicapping? Has it evolved from that day in the ballroom with the racing? I use the formulator now. I like to look at replays a lot. Growing up as a horse person, I’ve been around horses and written since I was five years old.
So I really like to look at the body language [00:51:00] of the horses and, you know, because there’s not a lot of time. To study at the NHC during the, the post, you know, at post time race, after race, after race, I would think it would be tricky to do much body language stuff, just because of the sheer number of races, as opposed to a one track tournament where you could actually physically go to the paddock and look at them for.
Right. Exactly. So I, um, I like to go back and watch the replays. I like to see a horse that. I guess a little bit of trouble or gets battered or, or have to kind of persevere through something and keep going. I really like to see that. So even if the horse doesn’t win the race, I love to see some sort of trouble early on that they can overcome.
And I even watch after the race is done, luckily the replays continue and they’ll, they’ll show the horse trotting back to the winner circle. And I like to kind of see what they look like there to like their soundness level and where their ears are and kind of. You can get a sense of whether they’re enjoying themselves and they, they have a heart and want to do it, or if they aren’t really that into it.[00:52:00] But other than that, it’s just a pen. And the, as a form, it’s pretty old school. I’m a little intimidated by some of the guys who have spreadsheets and all this other stuff out there. Our man, John Fisher brings his own monitors and computer. He looks like he’s got enough computing power to put a chip into space.
Yeah. And even on Twitter, you know, I’ve been following the conversation a bit, but I’m taking Thursday off and then Friday and Saturday, obviously, but. I’ve had business as usual here with grand slam and the team and our clients. And I’ve seen starting on, I think it was yesterday or the day before someone had seated that they got up at four 30 in the morning.
To start handicapping for the day. And I was just like, I don’t have that high. That’s not uncommon. It’s not uncommon. I’ll tell you. I mean, just from some of the folks I’ve been talking to and getting people at all kinds of weird hours and you see the emails in your inbox and you’re like, okay, they’re up early, it’s serious business.
That’s for sure. Do you [00:53:00] feel like that’s a major. Disadvantage to you trying to find the time that some of your competitors have, or do you feel like what you’re doing is unique enough and the format of the tournament is such that you’re in there with a fair chance. We all qualified, right? We all deserve to be there.
It’s not easy to qualify. There’s a lot of people out there who are really, really good at this. Some people have multiple seats and that’s fine, but in my opinion, we all made it there. And so we all have a shot at winning regardless of the tools and. Um, the technology that’s being used. I think a lot of it is preparation, but there’s, there’s enough percentage of, of luck and, and things going your way in the mentum that it can, it can make it possible for anyone who’s there.
That’s a great point. Any predictions for this weekend? Know, I feel like I’m such a rookie when it comes to this, because I’ve, again, I’ve been there multiple times, but I’ve never really. I’ve never gone with the player hat on. So I [00:54:00] think this is going to be a big learning experience for me. I’ve asked for advice from a lot of people and I’ve gotten some excellent tips.
It’s a little bit from here and there, but everything from recommended odd brackets, like five to one to 12 to one, you know, in terms of like the first day, what kind of odds they’re looking for to I’ve also had people say. Only handicap the races that you’re the best at. So if you are really good at sprints versus the distance races, focus on those there’s enough races out there where you can pick, you have the benefit of being able to pick the ones that you are a little bit better at.
And then of course, don’t be afraid to take a shot. I think that’s going to be the biggest one, finding that price, horse, and not being afraid to go great stuff. We wish you the best of luck. Look forward to seeing you out there. Thanks for having me. Can you please state your name, age, and profession for the microphone.[00:55:00] Michael Bay, chalk 55. And I am a political consultant. How many times have you been to the NHC? I think it’s 11 or 12. I went one year when I didn’t qualify. I don’t know if that counts. What’s your best finish. Well, I won the NAC in, um, 2012. I’ve finished 23rd in 2011, and I finished, uh, 40 ish, I think, in 2016.
And how much did you win the year you won? I want a million dollars. American. When will you be flying into Vegas? This time around. I’m coming in Thursday, not to play the last chance, but I’m just coming in Thursday early to get acclimated. Uh, if I could work it out to where I could come in Wednesday, uh, I would, but, uh, family life and business life [00:56:00] don’t allow that on normal basis.
So I’ll be coming in Thursday. What kind of data do you use to help you at the NHC? I use, uh, I’ll construct rudimentary track profiles for the tracks that I’m going to play. So just that I know it gives me a sense of how those surfaces and distances are playing and then I’ll use, uh, rely heavily on brisk net figures.
And also I’ll probably glance at third graph figures. And finally, I’ll look at optics to just give me a sense of what. The shape, uh, in the shape of the race looks like, and that also contributes to, or supplements my track profile because I can identify the, the looks of what a horse that is, that are winning these types of races looks like on a graph, which helps me, uh, kind of figure out who’s going to win any dinner plans so far for the weekend.
Very [00:57:00] important dinner plans are extremely important. And I think that is the last thing that I’ll do. And, um, but I, it makes me nervous right now that I don’t have plans for, for any dish and you know, me, Pete it, so, you know, that I’m, I’m being truthful. You know, I like to have a meals mapped out my dinners, uh, and I don’t.
And so, um, it gives me great pause that, that, that, that particular detail has not been taken care of, but I’m sure that I’ll have. Three or four very good dinners while I’m in Vegas. Where was your victory dinner in 2012? The victory dinner was, uh, was that, uh, the win in Alegra it’s a little pizza place or Italian place right off the wind sports book.
And that w the reason why was, um, I took a long time at the window at treasure Island, trying to get my million dollar check, which they some. For some odd [00:58:00] reason, they really didn’t want to cut it right away. And so that took a lot of time. And the other reason I had tickets to Garth Brooks at the wind that night, cause I had no idea that I was going to win and my wife had come in town and we were going to go.
So we had made our way over to the wind just to see if we could get in for the last half of it. And they wouldn’t let us in. So we ended up, uh, You know, hunkering down at, uh, at, uh Alegra but, uh, that was not an appropriate victory dinner. It was not. That’s so funny. Do you like the inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks to treasure Island?
Well, this is a question that now moves over to my political leanings. Uh, I am now anti Starbucks. I will not step foot in a Starbucks because their founder and CEO is thinking about running for president 2020, which I believe would, um, greatly. Undermine the chances of defeating Donald Trump. [00:59:00] So I will not be supporting Starbucks.
So let’s say very outset, any predictions for this year, um, feel very. Good about where I am, uh, emotionally, which is a big part of my handicapping as you and I have discussed before psychologically, I guess is better. Um, I think I’m in a good place psychologically. I’m going in with a lot of confidence.
Uh, but as you and I both know, you know, regardless of how confident, how well you handicap, you have to be the luckiest person out of 600 plus on those three days in order to win. Now, you can. You know, you can do well. You can probably make them money without being an extremely lucky, but even that takes a lot of luck.
So I’m just hoping that the convergence of my good, emotional, psychological state converges with some sort of lucky bio rhythm, uh, over the course of those 72 hours in Las Vegas, Godspeed, Michael [01:00:00] Bay, Chuck in your quest to become the first ever two time NHC winner. Thank you. Appreciate it. Please state your name, age, and profession.
Nate there’ll be 41. And I’m the vice president of marketing at Santa Anita park, talking to you, Nate about contests reminds me of those old Sy Sperling ads. This might just be something that happened in New York, but the idea was that he was the guy who owned the hair replacement company and he was particularly.
Uh, qualified to do his job because he was also a client you put on wonderful contests and you also play in them. I’m always fascinated by that. And I’ve asked you this before, but it’s, it’s a pet question and I’ll return to it. What about playing in contests makes it easier for you to run them? Well, I think it’s a couple of things.
I mean, the biggest advantage is just that I’m [01:01:00] constantly talking to tournament players and contest players and getting feedback and ideas and hearing their thoughts and strategies. So I think that that helps you put on a better contest. And then, uh, you know, hopefully when I’m playing in contest, all that information.
It comes together and, uh, and helps my chances to, uh, to do well. So, you know, as you know, Santa Nita, we do a lot of live money contest. So NFC will be totally different with the mythical format, but, uh, we’ll see how it goes. Where’d you qualify? Uh, at Los Alamitos, it was a kind of a sperm decision that after Santa Anita’s long, uh, kind of six month winter, spring, summer season ended was either a week or two after that end of the Tom Quigley and a couple of Leo and fluorine and a couple of our good, uh, Eddie, Logan players said they were going out there and asked me to meet them up there.
So just, uh, went out and took a shot in the $500 contest and, uh, and got lucky and finished. Second, when are you flying into Vegas? [01:02:00] Uh, I get in on a Thursday kind of mid day. What kind of data do you use? Uh, I wanna use a couple of, sorry. Um, you know, I’m a classic DRF BP guy, but then a lot of replays are what I’ll use.
So I’ll go. And at least the mandatory races I’ll try and watch as many rebates plays as I can. And, uh, I think with what is there seven or eight tracks? I probably won’t get through, uh, too much of the, uh, optionals, but, uh, I’ll see what I can do. How many times have you qualified. This will be my first time.
So I’m, uh, I’m looking forward to that interesting experience. I’m sure. How many have you been to in total? I assume you’ve been just to support your Santa Anita players over the years. Yeah. Usually, uh, we we’ve had about around 50 players from Santa Anita in the last few years. So I usually try and go out either Thursday, Friday, and just check in with everybody.
We usually host a dinner, so I’ve, I’ve, uh, I’ve seen it for one day, pretty much a [01:03:00] few last four or five years, but never the, uh, experience different the other side, or been there for all three days, which it’s going to be interesting. Speaking of dinner. Do you have any dinner plans booked already for this weekend?
We’re putting this together now probably, uh, gonna try and do some earlier dinner. So I get a little time to get some work in, but, uh, nothing too crazy. Maybe a Thursday night and then probably the rest of the schedule depend on how I do it in the contest. As far as whether the, uh, there’s going to be more fun, involved or more handicapping.
I like it it past visits to treasure Island. Do you go to the inside Starbucks or the outside Starbucks? Ooh, good question. I think, uh, I think the insight is, uh, is my usual spot, but I’ve, I’ve been to both for sure. Any predictions for this year’s NHC. Oh, I think, you know, I mean, obviously it’s the sharpest horse players around the country all there, so it’ll be, uh, a tough field and there’s no question never playing [01:04:00] in it, uh, that I’m, uh, I’m a big, long shot, but I’m just going to try and have fun.
And, uh, I’m sure we’ll see the, uh, the usual suspects at the top of the leaderboard, uh, on the S um, you know, those types of guys that we see always there that are, uh, being, you know, Great to see Jonathan kitchen’s name up there again. I was reading for him, so we’ll uh, we’ll see what happens. Yeah. He’s all right.
Thanks so much, Nate, for coming on the show today. All right. Thanks, Pete. Okay. We’ve heard from a lot of players playing at this year’s national HorsePlayers championship. Many of them have mentioned our next guest. All eyes are going to be on him playing for millions of dollars in bonuses, Dave. Good Freud NHC tour champion.
Welcome back to the end, the money players podcast. Great to be here, Pete, really, uh, really excited, a big weekend coming up, generally speaking. When do you get to Vegas for the NHC? And when did you get in this year? [01:05:00] Generally speaking, I would normally get here probably the Wednesday before two days before it starts.
I’ve been here probably a full week before it started this year. What is your frame of mind heading into this event? If I were just looking at your Twitter feed, I wouldn’t be too sure from the conversations we’ve had privately on the phone. You sound fantastic focused. Where’s your head at right now? My man, I feel great.
Totally relaxed. Just chilling. Um, you know, everything’s in place. Uh, we’ll see what happens. Uh, okay. Do the best of controlling what I can control at this point, but everything’s in place. I feel great. Now, obviously I had a little modicum of success since Thanksgiving and horse racing tournaments. And may that continue for one more event?
We’ve had a lot of different responses. When I ask people about their dinner plans, we have those who [01:06:00] have planned obsessively. We have those who plan and cancel everything. We have those who refuse to make plans. What are your dinner plans this weekend? I’ll be eating swiftly. At the end of contest, play on Friday alone and hopefully the same on Saturday night.
If I’m playing day three, I will, you know, sneak out, you know, as soon as my last play’s done, go grab a bite to eat and try and be asleep by as early as seven 30, eight o’clock at night with all due respect to the friends and acquaintances and. Competition out here in Vegas, you know, when I’m done at the end of the day of the contest, I just want to get the heck away.
I don’t want to hear any bad beat stories. I don’t want to hear how I should have had this or should have had that. I just want to completely decompress and sadly in some ways, but realistically, in some ways, the best way to do that [01:07:00] is not to be around other people. Right. When you say decompress, are you talking to go, you really talking about decompressing or are you just talking about going back to the room and keep grinding on the work?
I’m talking about going to going somewhere to eat dinner, most likely PF Chang’s one of the nights to eat and, you know, go over the day in my head, but I don’t want to be around a group of HorsePlayers commiserating about the day and just obsessing about the day. I just want to, you know, go over what happened to have an idea of what I’m going to do in my head for the next day.
And then pretty much. Eat dinner and go home and go to sleep. And pretty much start for Saturday mornings. Start at like two, three in the morning, four in the morning on Saturday morning, after a night of sleep, I think I’m much more likely to be effective work-wise, uh, after sleep, as opposed to after a long day of grinding of the tournament on Friday.
Makes sense. You know, your bio rhythms, that’s important. How many times have you qualified for this [01:08:00] event? According to the MHC web site. They say it’s my 14th time. I guess I have to believe though. What’s your best finish? So far? Uh, fifth, I believe in 2016, three years ago. Final table. How did sitting at the NHC final table compare to the various experiences you’ve had at poker final tables?
It’s not the same, uh, you know, it’s a completely different event versus a poker tournament versus a horse racing tournament. It was incredibly exciting, uh, you know, leading after day two and making that final table in 2016 and there was a great blueprint quite frankly, for what it takes to. Go deep in this tournament again this year and in subsequent years.
And it’s something that at least I have in my back pocket, knowing what it takes to make the final table poker final tables are so much different because of the, uh, [01:09:00] independent chip model, the ICM considerations, the laddering, and how you go about. The strategies that you play. There are some similarities in the laddering.
If you’re not in contention to win it in this particular tournament, for me, there really is no ICM consideration with the insane difference between first and everything else. The money is so much at the top. You’re talking about laddering different strategies to get to different places in the price structure.
Is that right? Of course. Yes. And trying to, you know, you know, get the most out of the equity you have in the tournament at whatever point you’re at you’re at, in the tournament. When you get down to making those considerations late in a horse racing tournament, how much does your particular opinion of a race or set of races?
Come into play as opposed to what is proper to do according to the math. In other words, if you love a mid price or a short price, [01:10:00] but there’s so much more equity in theory, and going for the longer price based on the price structure, what do you do? Push comes to shove math wins. If you’ve got a thousand dollars in your bank roll and you have to get to 1600 and there’s a four to five shot in the race, you’re much more likely best off just playing the four to five shot, regardless of what your opinion on the four to five shot is, as opposed to trying to figure out another way to.
Double your bankroll without that particular horse in a push come to shove case that in that particular case, I would just lean towards the math and getting from point a to point B in the easiest way, regardless of opinion. But you know, a Indian does matter. And, um, it’s a, it’s a balancing act at times.
Between, uh, the math and what you need to do and you know, what you have to do. And one of the great things about the NHC with 53 races, you know, 18 a day 36 before the cut is [01:11:00] there really isn’t any of that FOMO. There isn’t any of that. Pressure that you feel in a lot of other handicapping contests with especially mandatory plays when a 20 to one shot comes in and everybody in the room is yelling and screaming for it, you know?
So what, you know, the idea is to get to, you know, X amount of dollars each day and get enough to get into the top 20 and missing out on one horse isn’t gonna make or break you. And, um, so yeah. Biggest upset of the day. The term FOMO has now come up twice on the, in the money players podcast. I made the joke last time, Dave, that the older listeners can Google it.
Wait, I’m one of those older ones, but you know, FOMO, you’re hip you’re down with the lady. So what you get when you hang out with a bunch of young poker players who are kind and generous enough to hang out with a old fool, not hardly my [01:12:00] friend. Last question. Any predictions for this weekend? It’s going to be lots of fun.
It’s exciting for me. And I’m incredibly blessed to have a special opportunity and I’m going to do everything in my power to make the most of it. And that’s basically what I can predict is what I can control. And I’m going to. Do everything that I can to win this damn turn of it. It’s an amazing opportunity.
And I’m going to try and make the most of it. Well, we’ll be following along with great interest. Every step of the way folks can tune in live. Steve bic.com. Click the listen live link. You can go back there and check out the archive. I know a lot of players do that. Going to be fun, Dave, hopefully we’ll get a chance to, uh, at least wave.
Hi, not going to bother you by talking to you during this thing. As far as I’m concerned, you’re a pitcher with a no-hitter for the next few days. Don’t think like that at all. The best thing for me is to act and treat it like it just a regular tournament and do what it is that [01:13:00] I normally do it. And that’s the way I got to approach it.
In that case, come over and say hi to me and BIC. At some point, we’ll stick a microphone in your face. Godspeed, my friend. Thank you very much, Pete. See out there. And that’s going to do it for the, in the money players podcast, NHC preview show. Lots of thank yous today. We’ll start off by thanking our friends at the thoroughbred retirement foundation and 10 strike racing.
And now let’s get to today’s guests. Let’s see if I can get them all. Thank you very much. Jonathan kitchen, Scott Carson, Michelle Raven craft. Karen Carey, Tommy Massis, Elliot Honaker, Paul Sherman, Shona Rosenblum, Michael Bay, Chuck, Nate newbie, and the man of the hour. Dave gut Freunde. Thanks. Most of all, to all of you for listening, you make the show fun to do reach out, stay in touch, be apart of the community here at the end, the money players [01:14:00] podcast.
I lied before on the previous show, when I said we were also going to do a Friday show, this is your Friday show, took me basically two days to put it together. Don’t have the bandwidth to do another one this week, but we will be back after the NHC. And of course you can catch me all weekend long with Steve Beck firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next in the money players podcast, probably Tuesday I’m Peter Thomas foreign Italian. May you win all your NHC photos. .