April 24, 2024

Troop wins National Handicapping Championship

Last updated: 2/1/10 6:02 PM

Brian Troop posted a record Day 1 total en route to the Handicapper of the Year title
(Harold Roth/Horsephotos.com)

Brian Troop of Barrie, Ontario, parlayed a record-setting Day 1 performance
in the 11th annual Daily Racing Form/NTRA National Handicapping
Championship (NHC) into the title of Handicapper of the Year on Saturday, winning the
two-day competition at the Red Rock Casino in Las Vegas with a final bankroll of
$266. He earned a $500,000 first-place prize and will receive an Eclipse Award
at next year’s ceremonies.

Troop, 61, opened a sizable lead on the rest of the 302-person field with a Day 1
total of $232.60, smashing the previous Day 1 record of $190 set by Gwyn Houston
in 2001, and comfortably held off all challenges with a $33.40 score on Day 2.
Robert Gregory of Durango, Colorado, accumulated more than $100 on both days to
finish second, earning a second-place prize of $150,000 with a $249.80 total.
Ted Simmons of Lexington, Kentucky, compiled a Day 2-best score of $181.80 to
rally for third, collecting $100,000 for his $249.20 total.

Brian Herrity, of Mankato, Minnesota, came next at $240.80, pocketing $40,000
for fourth, and Elaine Kowaleski of Farmingdale, New Jersey, rounded out the top
five at $237.80 and won $25,000.

Troop’s score was the third-highest winning score in NHC history behind Steve
Wolfson Jr.’s $279.60 in NHC VI and Richard Goodall’s $272.30 in NHC IX. He
managed to maintain his lead on Day 2 despite having just one winner and one
place horse on Saturday.

“I was lucky, a lot of short prices came in,” Troop said. “I feel like I backed
into it.”

A member of BRISnet.com since 2008, Troop qualified for the tournament in a
December 6 contest that took place at Turfway Park. He finished fourth in that
event, but the top two in that competition had previously qualified, leaving the
way clear for Troop to earn his second straight berth in the NHC.

Troop also automatically earns an exemption into next year’s finals. NHC XII
will be held again at Red Rock on January 28-29, 2011.

Registrations for the 2010 NHC Tour are now being accepted at www.ntra.com/nhctour.
Full standings and results for this weekend’s just completed NHC can be found at

Highlights of NHC XI are available at