Michael Beychok

2012 NHC Champion and Eclipse Award Winner

Michael won the 2012 National Handicapping Championship taking the grand prize of $1 million and the Eclipse award for best handicapper of 2012. Beychok finished 23rd in 2011 and 40th in 2015. Other notable tournament results include a 2nd in the 2000 Youbet Online Handicapping Challenge. He is a 7 time NHC qualifier and the all-time leading money winner in handicapping contests.

Beychok has been handicapping horses for over 35 years and is a true believer in the value of giving back to the fans of the sport.  Beychok is founder and chief handicapper for Beychokracing.com, a website dedicated to horserace handicapping and education.

His high profile as a handicapper led to Beychok being a featured cast member on the Esquire Network TV reality show Horseplayers.

Michael Beychok is senior partner in Ourso Beychok, Inc., a political consulting and advertising firm based in Louisiana.  As a direct mail consultant for over 20 years, Michael has worked on hundreds of campaigns in dozens of states ranging from U.S. Senate to City Council. Michael is responsible for the designing and writing of the creative part of the campaign plan as well as having input on the targeting, message development and budget. Michael has been producing award winning mail for clients for over 25 years.


Barbara Bowley

Top Female Contest Player/Physicality Handicapper

Barbara Bowley is the leading female handicapper in the country in horse physicality assessment. She is the only woman to have won a $100,000 contest, is regularly atop the DerbyWars leaderboard, and has won major prizes in all the top online sites, including HorseTourneys, HPQualify, and DRFQualify. Bowley is regularly featured in Forbes magazine as a horse race contest expert.

A former professor with two graduate degrees from Columbia University, she comes from a racing family, where she grew up around racehorses as long as she can remember. She took care of foals as a young girl and developed her horsemanship skills to become one of the youngest female assistant trainers in the country at age 18.

She is familiar with all aspects of horse racing, having been a breeder, owner and assistant trainer in the Mid-Atlantic circuit. Her life growing up around horses and her natural intuitive style have proven successful at reading their psychological state, physical suitability and readiness to win.

Barbara is known for never being afraid to take any horse at any price if it looks like it is has potential to cross the finish line first.  She has won contests on 87-1 shots and is known to be dangerous to find the cap horse that has a legitimate chance.

She is a natural teacher, and even taught herself how to handicap by shadowing the top players in the field. Barbara has made instructional videos for Derby Wars for beginners to experts, but her specialty is helping people find their own style for winning. She has had success in live contests and online, though online is her specialty. An expert in learning strategies, she often uses music and other techniques that stimulate the right side of the brain to help her tap into the part of the brain that can “read” the psychological state of the horse.

Watch Barbara’s 100K interview!

Handicappers/ Bloggers


Deborah has accepted the role of blogging her life as an emerging contest player in the new reality blog series “On The Edge” which premiered exclusively on TheTournamentEdge.net July 2016.

Deborah hails from El Dorado, Arkansas and has worked in printing for over 26 years.  She is a history buff, avid reader, lover of the outdoors & fishing, and passionate animal lover. Her love for horses began as a child and despite her love for horses and horse racing, she has never entered a racetrack or made a wager.

Follow her journey as she begins her career as a horse racing handicapper and contest player as she blogs about her struggles and successes along the way on the new TTE reality blog series “On The Edge.”


Bob Felty is currently an Athletic Director and Assistant Principal at Tri-Valley High School in Hegins, PA.  He is in his 8th year in his current position and his 15th year at Tri-Valley after serving as a social studies teacher and gifted coordinator for his first 7 years.  During his tenure at Tri-Valley he also served as the varsity girls’ basketball coach for 12 years culminating in a state championship in 2013.  Bob is married to Melissa Felty for 9 years and they are the proud parents of Benjamin(7), Ava (5), and Hannah (3).

Bob’s passion for horse racing began in 1992 at age 16 when his father took him to Penn National Race Course.  He has been handicapping and betting the horses ever since.  Bob entered the tournament scene in 2014 and finished fifth in the Belmont Challenge in his very first live tournament.  He also played on the NHC tour the last two years and qualified for the NHC both years.  He plays under the handle “ladydawgs” (the mascot of the high school girls’ basketball team he coached) on Derbywars and won the 20k on August 20, 2016.   


Dustin is an executive editor, overseeing newspaper editorial operations at The Record Herald and Echo Pilot, both located in southern Pennsylvania. Two years ago, he took his longtime passion for betting horses into the tournament ranks where he has enjoyed success highlighted by a third-place finish in DerbyWars 100K game and a pair of runner-up placings in the 25K.

For the first 10 years of his journalism career, Dustin was a sports writer that covered minor league baseball and high school sports. During that time, he also wrote columns previewing several years worth of Triple Crown races and covered three editions of the Belmont Stakes. Recently, Dustin has made the transition from sports to news as he manages an editorial department which serves a circulation base of nearly 7,000 print subscribers. Though, he has been physically removed from press boxes and post-game buzz in clubhouses, Dustin has maintained a presence on a local ESPN radio affiliate where he talks baseball and horse racing on a weekly year-round basis.

Since January, Dustin has featured several tournament winners from DerbyWars in his columns which appear on the DW tournament site as well as Horse Racing Nation. Dustin blends his knowledge of handicapping and tournament strategy with his nearly 20 years of professional writing experience.


Jon is from New Orleans, Louisiana and currently resides in Little Rock, Arkansas. He is a graduate of Jesuit High School in New Orleans, and Louisiana State University (LSU) where he was a 4-year letterman on the #1 nationally ranked tennis team and 2x SEC Champions. He earned his MBA from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette (ULL), attended Law School and Medical School before settling down in his current career. He devotes much of his time outside of work with his twin brother and his 2-year-old son. He often jokes that when his son was born, he handed him a racing form. Before entering the handicap world, Jon has seen much success on a national level playing in many fantasy sports contests. He was leading the Footballguys Players Championship (FPC) high stakes fantasy football league where his $350 initial investment nearly paid $150,000, falling from the glory in the final week of the season. He has finished as high as 311 of 11 million entries’ on ESPN’s NCAA Basketball Tourney Bracket Challenge, earned as high as a 16 streak on ESPN’s Streak for the Cash, and won an NFL Pick’um Challenge having gone 70% against the spread for all 255 NFL regular season games.

Jon has had one of the most amazing entry’s known to entering the horse racing world. Jon started his horseracing journey three years ago at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, AR. It was there that he was noticed by producers and asked to shoot the pilot for the fame Horseplayers reality series on Esquire TV. At the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge where the show was shot he witnessed one of the cast members finish as the Runner-Up, while his NOLA hometown fellow handicapper finished off back to back wins. As for the show, Jon didn’t make the final cut. However, he took that experience and energy and combined it with his fantasy sports background.  He then channeled it into the handicap universe where he indulged himself in this positive new direction where he had the opportunity to grow and be mentored by some of the game’s elite names. In 2013, he qualified for the 2014 Horseplayers World Series where once again he found good fortunes as he was a table mate to the Winner. That same year at the 2014 Kentucky Derby he landed a spot in the Winner Circle with the California Chrome Contingency compliments of fellow handicapper and friend, Robbie Rodriguez. To finish off his first year on the NHC Tour, Jon finished in the Top 150 handicappers on tour and punched his ticket to Las Vegas to participate in NHC 16. He followed that effort by winning a spot to NHC 17 at the Keeneland Fall Handicap Tournament, also earning a spot in the 2015 Breeders Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC). In 2016, at the NHC 17 once again he found himself amongst greatness as one of his table mates landed a spot at the Final 10 Table. His magic didn’t stop there, in only his 2nd ever attendance to the Kentucky Derby somehow he landed himself entry into The Mansion at Churchill Downs amongst the celebrities and socialites to view the races and get an up-close look at The Kentucky Derby Trophy (pictured above). In only his 3rd year on the NHC Tour, he has been ranked as high as the Top 50 and looks to cap off a 3 for 3 qualifying effort to the prestigious NHC. Jon has gained some valuable experience having participated in numerous live handicap tournaments at Monmouth, Keeneland, Santa Anita, Del Mar, Oaklawn, and the Fairgrounds. He has played over 1000 online tournaments not only having cashed along the way but winning entry to many major tournaments such as the Horse Players World Series. He has even been seen as a live guest on the Derby Wars Wednesday Webcast and has been mentioned by many of the games’ best players as the next ‘Rising Star’ in the handicapping world. He has been mentioned on several occasions in Peter Thomas Fornatale’s DRF Blog by fellow handicappers. He has been given nicknames as “Whodat,” “Boom Boom,” and “The Hurricane.” Jon can be followed on Twitter @nolagistics and is a guest contributor to the TTE Team.


Nicolle Neulist lives in Chicago, and loves all things Chicago racing: Hawthorne, Arlington, and Illinois-bred pedigrees.  Though the horse racing bug did not bite Nicolle until 2013, a lifelong love of trivia and puzzles made handicapping a perfect fit.  Nicolle’s favourite type of contests to play are head-to-head battles.  But, well befitting their focus on the Chicago circuit, Nicolle’s biggest contest win to date is a sole-survivor victory in a $1,000 Hawthorne game on DerbyWars.


Name a horse racing job and chances are George O has probably done it. His first job ever was at historic Hialeah Park back in the late 70’s. Since then,  he has managed to be a mutuel clerk, Customer Service Representative, Marketing Manager, Jockey Agent, on-air talent, horse owner, track announcer (in English and Spanish) and successfully executed a plethora of other horse related assignments.

Between the 70’s and the present, George managed to fit in a career in the entertainment industry.  He appeared in six movies,   extensive  commercials and a decade long stint at Univision in Miami, the nation’s largest Spanish language TV network.  While at Univision,  he appeared in  top programs Sabado Gigante,  Despierta  America, De Pelicula, La Piñata Loca, Lente Loco and the show titled named after him “Giorgiomania”.  He hosted many prime time program alongside famous Hispanic talent including Paul Rodriguez, Carlos Ponce,  and Sofia Vergara.  His most popular show was “Lente Loco” co-hosted by Cuban bombshell Odalys Garcia.

George Ortuzar is now a resident of Los Angeles where he continues his entertainment career in addition to staying involved with his true love, horse racing.    While in Southern California, Ortuzar announced at and served as Marketing Manager,  Hollywood Park.  One of his biggest joys was running, promoting, and hosting the Hollywood Park tournaments and was active at the Park until its closure.

He teamed up with HPQualify.com (Horse Players Qualify) and recently officially joined The Tournament Edge, LLC  a horse racing contest education  company  of internationally recognized top handicapping experts, educators, and entertainers .   Ortuzar will lead their Hispanic Division.

See TVG Feature

Follow George on Twitter