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Earns $5,000 Day 1 Bonus Plus $10,000 Entry to Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge 

LAS VEGAS (Friday, January 24, 2015) – Joe Jarvie of Renton, Wash., leads the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship (NHC) Presented by Racetrack Television Network, Sovereign Stable and Treasure Island Las Vegas after Day 1 with a $115.80 bankroll. The building engineer and former NCAA Division I basketball official vaulted to the lead with a $26.20 winner (Fabulous Fit) in Santa Anita’s ninth, the day’s final optional race. As Day 1 leader, Jarvie earned a $5,000 bonus, as well as Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge entry fees, live bankroll, airfare and hotel (cumulatively worth $10,000).

The top five Day 1 leaders earned bonuses. Ed Reidy, who led most of the afternoon, sits in second with $113.70 and earned a $4,000 bonus, followed by Greg Knepper ($104.30; $3,000), Daniel Mandarino ($102.20; $2,000) and Jean Huttepain ($98.90; $1,000).

The Top 10 was rounded out by Linda Rodriguez ($97.40), Ken Jordan ($95), Patrick Stich ($94.20), Joe Masino($93.70) and Robert Pontani Jr. ($92.90).

The full standings can be viewed here.

The 606 NHC entrants were required to place 15 mythical $2 Win and Place wagers – eight on mandatory races that everyone played and seven on any of about 50 other races from seven designated racetracks across the country.

Jarvie found himself alone atop the standings after landing on a 13-1 shot in the day’s final contest race. Six-year-old Fabulous Fit, trained by James Cassidy, had been away from the races for more than two years.

“I just looked at his class and three

[races] back he’d run pretty good,” Jarvie said. “It’d been a while since he’d ran but he had some pretty good works, too.”

Jarvie also scored big in Oaklawn Park’s fourth, a mandatory contest race, won by 63-1 Springandaprayer ($128.20). For NHC scoring purposes, payoffs are capped at 20-1 ($42) to Win and 10-1 ($22) to Place.

This is Jarvie’s sixth trip to the NHC, where he has never finished in the Top 50. He qualified for NHC 16 in a July contest at

For comparison, last year’s Day 1 leader, eventual NHC winner Jose Arias, had $198.80 at this point in the weekend. He went on to become the second Day 1 leader to win the whole contest.

The three-day NHC continues Saturday at Treasure Island Las Vegas. Day 1 bankrolls will carry over to Day 2, which will have eight mandatory races and seven optionals. The top 50 after Day 2 will continue on to a “Final 50” tournament Sunday and the top 10 will play at the “Final Table” to determine the final rankings, including the $800,000 grand prize and Eclipse Award winner. Players outside the Final 50 will play in a separate $65,000 Consolation Tournament on Sunday with reset mythical bankrolls.

About the NHC

In its 16th year, the Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping Championship is the most important tournament of the year for horseplayers and is the culmination of a year-long series of NTRA-sanctioned local tournaments conducted by racetracks, casino race books, off-track betting facilities and horse racing and handicapping websites, each of which sends its top qualifiers to the national finals. Each year, the NHC winner joins other human and equine champions as an honoree at the Eclipse Awards. In addition to the founding title sponsor, the NHC is presented by Racetrack Television Network,  Sovereign Stable and Treasure Island Las Vegas.

About the NTRA

The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of more than 100 horse racing interests and thousands of individual stakeholders consisting of horseplayers, racetrack operators, owners, breeders, trainers and affiliated horse racing associations, charged with increasing the popularity, welfare and integrity of Thoroughbred racing through consensus-based leadership, legislative advocacy, safety and integrity initiatives, fan engagement and corporate partner development. The NTRA owns and manages the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance,, the Eclipse Awards, the National Handicapping Championship, NTRA Advantage, a corporate partner sales and sponsorship program, and HORSE PAC, a federal political action committee. The NTRA has offices in Lexington, Ky., and New York City. NTRA press releases appear on, Twitter (@ntra) and Facebook (