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The 9th National Handicapping Championship
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9 Years and Counting!

Richard Goodall's win at the NHC makes it Nine Years in a row for Brisnet members.

Congratulations go out to veteran tournament player and longtime member of, Richard Goodall, on his outstanding victory at the 9th annual National Handicapping Championship. For the win Goodall captured the $500,000 grand prize and title of Handicapper of the Year.

Goodall winning check Goodall, like last year's winner Stanley Bavlish, was an original member of BRIS back in the pre-Internet era of the late 1980s. He is a regular Ultimate Past Performance user. Goodall crushed more than 270 qualifiers with a bankroll of $272.30. He was $76 ahead of another Brisnet member, Don Beardsworth, who collected a hefty $150,000 for second. This was by far the largest margin of victory in the history of the NHC.

"I will be a member of BRIS for another 20 years," stated Goodall at the NHC Awards Banquet at Red Rock Casino.

Handicapping Style

"I am a generalist. I try not to focus on just one thing. Being a bit of a contrarian I do look for horses or trainers overlooked by the bettors. Trainers who are doing well but for whatever reason are flying under the radar. I steer clear of the major trainers at the major tracks because they offer no value. At one point last year I believe Todd Pletcher was 0 for 123 with horses with odds over 10/1. The flipside to this is I have days when I take my lumps but I am willing take that risk."

National Handicapping Championship

"My goal when I started the tournament was to double my bankroll. With an ultimate goal of getting to 220 points. After the first day I was at $149 and I was determined not to get conservative on the second day. Stick to what I got me here. Demand value. Play horses 10/1 or higher.

I also shifted my emphasis this year to the tracks I thought would get the least amount of play in the tournament. Absent the mandatories, my thinking was to go opposite from everyone else. Use the contrary tracks. On the bigger tracks you are more likely to share a longshot with multiple players. Focusing on Fair Grounds, Tampa and Oaklawn I felt I could minimize that from happening. Sure enough when I hit Big Love Bill at the Fair Grounds, I was the only one near the top that had it.

Big Love Bill had some angles I like to play. The trainer Josie Carroll was only hitting at 11% but Bill had a couple things going for him. Big Love Bill had posted strong six furlong work four days before the race. One of my favorite angles. Plus, when Carroll gave the mount to Husbands I was going to play this horse no matter what. Husbands is underrated and has had some success with Carroll. I made the decision to play him right then.

Goodall and wife

Richard Goodall and wife Sally Wang

After I won that race it was still early Saturday afternoon but I felt pretty good about my chances to win. I told Sally (Goodall's wife and six-time NHC qualifier Sally Wang) what happened but I told her we couldn't say anything until after the leaderboard updated. At the time the leaderboard wasn't updating very frequently, so it was real advantage to me to keep the information to myself. Everyone would have been firing away at longshots if they knew my score. When the leaderboard updated nearly an hour later, I had already had the points I needed to win it. At that point I focused on increasing my point total so a "capper" couldn't catch me. With my last three plays I hit a couple of places horses including one in the finale that put me out of reach of anyone."

The funny thing is Sally was busting to tell someone. Finally, she went outside of the casino and called her relatives in China. So China found out I won before Las Vegas," laughed Goodall."

Contest Handicapping

"My opinion on mandatory races is you should treat them like your option plays. Demand value and don't be afraid to go against the grain. Sometimes it will cost you but it has worked for me.

Being disciplined at tournaments is important. Try not to stray from your game plan. Focus your energies on races that offer the best opportunity for a price. Avoid those mid-day races with short fields. Don't even look at them. Advanced preparation is key."


"Truthfully, BRIS was a big key to my victory. The fact I was able to download (Ultimate Past Performances) and handicap Fair Grounds' Friday and Saturday cards early Tuesday and Wednesday was a huge advantage for me. By working ahead I was fresher and better prepared to tackle the other contest tracks. A day before the tournament had even started I already had four picks laid out for Fair Grounds, including the horse that helped me win the tournament, Big Love Bill."

Special Thanks

"Thanks to my wife Sally a million times over, BRIS and HTR."


For this first time in this event, the NTRA paid down to the top 30 finishers. No less than 17 of those cashing were members, bringing home an aggregate of $773,400 in prize winnings.

2000 champion Judy Wagner was well behind after the first day, but her resolve and determination paid off on day two. By nearly doubling her bankroll on Saturday, she won $1,500 in day two prize money and another $5,000 for finishing 15th overall. Wagner switched to Brisnet products years ago and has been a regular user of the Winner's Choice and Ultimate PPs ever since then.

Another Winner's Choice user fared very well at the event. 6th place finisher Robin Buser was a late entry in the event.

"I just wanted to drop a line and let you folks know that your 'WINNER'S CHOICE' sheets for Saturday, January 26 came in quite handy in my preparation and performance in the NHC Championship at the Red Rock. During the 2nd day of competition, I scored place money on selections CANDY BALL (Fair Grounds 9th), SOLDIER'S DANCER (Gulfstream 10th) and CARVAJAL (Tampa Bay 3rd). My play of the day was nailing STAR BROOK in the 7th at Tampa Bay at 10.5 to 1!

I finished 6th overall and was only $10.90 behind the 2nd place finisher! Not bad for qualifying with less than 48 hours notice before the beginning of the tournament, as an alternate due to the original qualifier having claustrophobia and failing to get on his flight to Vegas at the airport on Tuesday (see article by Dave Tuley in the Friday, January 25, 2008 edition of the Daily Racing Form). Thank you for your assistance." -- Robin D. Buser

To date all nine winners of the National Handicapping Championship are members of Members have accumulated nearly $3 million in earnings since this popular event began.

Congratulations go out to all the members who participated in the Las Vegas championships. Six of the top 10 finishers in the Coast Casino Horseplayer World Series, including the top three overall, are also members of

Brisnet representatives were there at both events to support the many members participating who did not have access to a computer or printer.

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