Tommy Massis of Toronto is the king of Keeneland handicapping contests. On Sunday, he rode a $1,000 win bet on 19-1 shotBella Noire in Keeneland’s fourth race to a win in the BCBC-NHC Challenge. His winning total of $20,800 bested second-place finisher Blake Jessee of Carmel, Indiana, by nearly $8,000.
Massis, who also won the BCBC at Keeneland in 2015, took home $30,000 for his latest win, along with a fully paid $10,000 berth in the BCBC at Churchill Downs and a fully paid entry plus expenses into the 2019 National Horseplayers Championship in February in Las Vegas.
Runner-up Jessee, who collected $15,000 in prize money in addition to a BCBC and NHC berth, had a memorable week in the Bluegrass. He got married Saturday, Oct. 6; celebrated in a Keeneland Corporate Suite with his bride and their families the next day; traveled to Thistledown on Saturday, Oct. 13, to oversee Loooch Stables’ entries in the Best of Ohio championship for state-breds; and returned to Keeneland on Sunday to cash for $12,865.
Sunday’s tournament drew 167 entries (53 of which qualified online with the cooperation of Horsetourneys.com and DRF.com) and awarded BCBC and NHC spots to the top five finishers; NHC spots to sixth through eighth place; and prize money to 15thplace.
Also securing BCBC and NHC spots were third-place finisher Jonathon Kinchen of Austin, Texas (double qualified and ineligible for another NHC entry); fourth-place finisher David Rink of Chicago and fifth-place finisher Faron McCubbins of Mount Washington, Kentucky.
NHC spots went to respective sixth- through ninth-place finishers Steven Shaffer of Prospect, Kentucky; Marshall Gramm of Memphis; Nick Tammaro of Houston; and Ken Hopkins of Flushing, New York (eligible due to double qualifying status of Kinchen).
Click here for complete standings.