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Arlington Park Sends 27 Players to Upcoming National Tournaments

| Churchill Downs Communications | 01/26/2010 #

Arlington Park's aggressive schedule of "Live Money" handicapping contests in 2009 has led to a total of 27 players representing the track at upcoming Las Vegas-based national handicapping tournaments.  Six players will carry the Arlington Park banner at the Jan. 29-30 DRF/NTRA National Handicapping Challenge (NHC) to be held at the Red Rock Casino while the other 21 players will represent Arlington at the 2010 Horse Players World Series (HPWS) at The Orleans Hotel & Casino.

In 2009, Arlington Park held two NHC qualifiers - one in July and one in September - with each one offering three berths into the NHC.  The top three July finishers - Joe Scanio of Brooklyn, N.Y.; Scott Carson of Yorktown Heights, N.Y.; and Robert Witt of Peotone, Ill. - will join the top three finishers from the September qualifier - former NHC champion Stanley Bavlish of Las Vegas; Creighton Schoenfeldt of Elmwood Park, Ill.; and Don Allen of Bradley, Ark. - in this year's NHC.

Throughout 2009 Arlington Park held multiple live money handicapping contest series at both the track itself and across its vast network of Illinois Trackside OTB operations that offered its winners berths into the 2010 HPWS.  Plus, the spring OTB and fall OTB tours offered an additional berth as a series-long "consistency" prize to the overall point earner who did not otherwise win a berth though an individual contest win, and unlike the NHC, the HPWS allows contestants to play multiple entries and as such two of Arlington's 21 winners earned berths in more than one of the series.

Winners in the spring 2009 series who are headed to Las Vegas in February are: Bobby Wegner of Chicago; Michael Wegner of Skokie, Ill.; Matthew McBride of Arlington Heights, Ill.; Curt Phillips of Elgin, Ill.; Jan Nilsen of Plano, Ill.; Joseph Russo of Oak Park, Ill.; Stan Koper of Chicago Ridge, Ill.; Otto Yahnke of Chicago; and Tom Bolek of Palatine, Ill.

Qualifying for the HPWS during the 2009 live meet at Arlington were: Mike Rusovick of Vernon Hills, Ill.; Henry Wessel of Roselle, Ill.; Paul Hoffman of Schaumburg, Ill.; Dan Pavlik of Mt. Prospect, Ill.; and David Sellner of Palatine.

Fall 2009 OTB contest winners who qualified for the HPWS are: Dave Anderson of Prospect Heights, Ill.; Tom Hausheer of Chicago; Tom Zipp of Park Ridge, Ill.; Jim Pommier of Carol Stream, Ill.; Richard Zipp of Palos Hills, Ill.; Paul Taillon of Arlington Heights; and Tom Reed of Northbrook, Ill.  In addition, live meet winners Mike Rusovick and Dan Pavlik each earned a second berth into the HPWS during the fall OTB contest series.

Arlington Park will offer its fans plenty of opportunities to qualify for the 2011 HPWS and the 2011 DRF/NTRA NHC XII throughout the year beginning in the spring of 2010 when another series of live money handicapping contests will be presented at Illinois' Trackside OTB locations.

"We implemented the tours of our parlors in 2008," explained Wesley Ward, marketing and advertising manager for Arlington Park.  "They were an instant success in 2008 and grew in popularity in 2009.  We are eager to bring them back for 2010.

"Our OTB tours are in the spring and fall, when Arlington is not racing live," Ward continued.

The upcoming Spring, 2010, Arlington OTB Tour will visit a different Arlington parlor each Saturday in March and April and will again be hosted by M. Scott McMannis.  Known as "The Professor," McMannis, who daily Arlington Park selections appear in the Chicago Sun-Times, is also the Midwest Correspondent for HorsePlayer Magazine. 

The program for each Tour stop features a noon handicapping seminar conducted by McMannis, followed by an afternoon handicapping contest centering on that day's Illinois Thoroughbred card at Hawthorne Race Course.