Ken Orchard took the lead early in Saturday’s Simulcast Series Challenge #3 and never looked back. Vaulting to the top of the leaderboard with only his second contest wager, Orchard ($929.25) held off challenges by Terry Flanagan ($862) and Ed Betlow ($741.15) to remain in front. Orchard found value in his winners and cashed on six of 19 races.
"I tend to focus on certain trainers. Trainers that have a passion for the industry and their stable, which led me to Joe Orseno," Orchard said in regards to strategy. Orseno, a Monmouth native, came through in a big way in the 5th race at Gulfstream with Becky B, a $51.40 winner. Orchard had spread $20 across the board on the maiden filly.
"I figured I'm either going home or going to the top," said Orchard. The Simulcast Series Challenge #3 was his first win in a contest. Orchard defeated a strong field of 262 entries, the second largest in SSC history, building off February's high of 279.
Orchard captured the top prize of $13,100. Top ten earned prize money and top fifteen join 30 other finalists in the Simulcast Series Invitational on Saturday, April 9. There they will compete for two spots in the 2012 DRF/NTRA National Championships in Las Vegas.
Saturday’s format included contest wagering on Aqueduct, Gulfstream and Tampa Bay Downs. Players were required to wager on one horse per race with a $10 minimum per race and 10 races minimum. Starting bankroll was $100.
Official Top Fifteen:
S. Orange, NJ
Morris Plains, NJ
E. Brunswick, NJ
Long Branch, NJ
W. Chester, PA
White Plains, NY
*Based on 262 entries.
Simulcast Series Challenge #3 shook up the Monmouth Park Player of the Year Award Standings as well. Current Standings through March 19: CLICK HERE.
For more information on the Monmouth Park Player of the Year program, click here.