SHRP to Host NTRA Great State Challenge Online Handicapping Contest on December 7

(Wednesday, October 30, 2002) - Sam Houston Race Park and the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) are teaming up to give handicappers yet another chance to win a trip to Bally’s in Las Vegas to compete in the $212,000 Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship. On Saturday, December 7, the day of the inaugural NTRA Great State Challenge, Sam Houston Race Park will hold the NTRA Great State Challenge Online Handicapping Contest with the top four finishers winning the right to represent "Team Great State Challenge" in the fourth annual Las Vegas event. The four winners will receive complimentary entry into the finals, roundtrip airfare to Las Vegas and two nights’ hotel accommodations. A first prize of $100,000 and recognition as "Handicapper of the Year" will be up for grabs at Bally’s.

Deadline to enter the National Handicapping Championship qualifier is 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 7. Contestants will be required to make $2.00 win, place and show wagers on the six Great State Challenge races:

$275,000 Great State Challenge Juvenile Fillies
$275,000 Great State Challenge Juvenile
$275,000 Great State Challenge Sprint
$275,000 Great State Challenge Turf
$275,000 Great State Challenge Distaff
$275,000 Great State Challenge Classic

Last month, Sam Houston Race Park held a separate handicapping tournament in which 130 contestants tested their mettle to win prize money along with entry to next January’s National Handicapping Championship.

Modeled on the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships, the Challenge races are limited to horses from jurisdictions where the official state horsemen's association is an NTRA member. The top eight NTRA-member horsemen's associations - California, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Texas, based on current dues - are guaranteed one horse in each race. The state with the overall best performance in the Challenge will receive a trophy. Points will be allocated for each race, with the NTRA State Challenge Champion being the top point-holder.

For more information regarding the NTRA Great State Challenge Handicapping Contest on Saturday, December 7, please call (281) 807-8833 or visit the Sam Houston Race Park web site at

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