The Hawthorne Invitational


Click here for a summary of the contestClick here for the complete Official Final Results.


The Hawthorne Invitational, presented by The Daily Racing Form, is one of the most competitive handicapping contests in the country, featuring a who’s who of top-rated contest players: 6 NHC winners, 3 NHC Tour Champions, and 6 Hall of Fame Handicappers.

Plus winners of:

The Breeders Cup Classic | The Pegasus Betting Challenge | The Keeneland Grade 1 Gamble | Belmont Stakes Challenge | Monmouth Pick Your Prize | Santa Anita 3-Peat | Travers Challenge | Del Mar Handicapping Challenge | and many more…

On Sunday, June 25th approximately 60 players will compete for over $50,000 in prizes, playing a $2500 bankroll across 4 mandatory races, 3 optional plays and a grand finale Hawthorne Derby.


WIN YOUR WAY IN: We’re giving away 3 entries to this otherwise invite-only contest as part of the prize pool in our NHC Spring Qualifier Contest on Saturday, June 24th.  This contest is a $500 live bankroll with no entry fee, no mandatory races and an open wager format (bet however you want on the races that you feel best suit your skill).  Click HERE to register and learn more.

WATCH & WAGER ALONG: The Hawthorne Invitational will be streamed live on YouTube (subscribe for alerts) featuring expert wagering analysis and contest strategy by Emily Gullikson (OptixEQ) and Ed DeRosa (Horse Racing Nation), with real-time race previews, reactions and discussions with contest players.


First Name Last Name Name Plate
1 Jim Benes 2013 NHC Winner
2 AJ Benton Cashed 4x in 1st 4 NHCs
3 Michael Beychok 2012 NHC Winner, Hall of Fame
4 Matthew Bickey Horsetourneys Breeders Cup Winner
5 Paul Calia 2023 NHC Winner
6 Roger Cettina 2nd Place NHC (2x)
7 Scott Coles 2019 NHC Winner
8 Kevin Costello 2021 NHC Tour Champion
9 Jorge Cruz-Aedo 2021 Horsetourneys Tour Winner
10 Justin Dew 6x NHC Qualifier
11 Dylan Donnelly 2023 Monmouth Pick Your Prize Winner
12 Bryan Doranski Hawthorne Contest Top 5 Finisher
13 John Fisher 16x NHC Qualifier
14 Tony Garafalo 14x NHC Qualifier
15 John Gaspar 14x NHC Qualifier
16 Greg Gass 5x NHC Qualifier
17 Marshall Gramm 2020 BCBC Winner
18 Gaylord Grundy NHC Top 5 Finisher
19 David Gutfreund NHC Hall of Fame, Tour Champion
20 Paul Hoffman Top 5 Finish NHC Tour (2x)
21 Jordan Jayne Hawthorne Contest Winner
22 Jeannie King 11x NHC Qualifier
23 Kyle King Hawthorne Contest Winner
24 Brady Klotz 2nd Place Pegasus Challenge
25 Christopher Larmey 2022 Invitational Winner, Hall of Fame
26 Gregory Lewis 9x NHC Qualifier
27 Anthony Mattera 2nd Place Players Championship
28 Carson Matties Youngest Invitational Player
29 Duke Matties Orleans Fall Classic Winner
30 Paul Matties, Jr 2016 NHC Winner
31 Kenneth McMahan Keeneland Gamble Winner
32 Matt Miller 2021 BCBC Winner
33 Christy Moore Travers Stakes Challenge Winner
34 Michael Mulvihill 3rd Place Pegasus Challenge
35 Frank Mustari 2019 Invitaional Winner
36 Justin Mustari 2021 NHC Winner
37 Dave Nichols 3x Top 15 NHC Tour
38 Mark Odorisio Hawthorne Contest Winner
39 Eddie Olczyk Pegasus Challenge Winner
40 Joe Paladino Hawthorne Contest Top 5 Finisher
41 Leonard Peterson 7th Place in 2023 NHC Tour
42 Dylan Rossi Founder of WinningBred
43 Anthony Sagan Co-Owner Two Phil’s
44 Marc Scanio 1st Time Hawthorne Contest Player
45 Paul Shurman NHC Hall of Fame, Tour Champion
46 William Shurman NHC Hall of Fame
47 Steven Simonovic 10x NHC Qualifier, Top 5 Finish
48 Melvin Simonovich Hawthorne Contest Winner
49 Patrick Stich Monmouth Pick Your Prize Winner
50 Trey Stiles Most All-Time NHC Appearances (tied)
51 Paul Weizer 2nd Place BCBC
52 Henry Wessel 1st Time Hawthorne Contest Player
53 Steve Wolfson, Jr. 2003 NHC Winner, Hall of Fame
54 Darren Yarwood Hawthorne Contest Winner
55 Tim Yohler Del Mar Challenge Winner
56 Tony Zhou Belmont Challenge Winner


as of 6/20/223


We’re always eager to meet more horseplayers!  Use the form below to introduce yourself.  THANKS!

The Invitational showcases a wide range of betting styles and strategies. Tell us about your experience as a contest player and horse bettor.

Event Date(s)

Sun, Jun 25 @ 12:30 PM - Sun, Jun 25 @ 6:00 PM


Club Hawthorne & Fanatics Sportsbook in Crestwood