Night School Tops 30,000 Online Attendees, Takes Show On The Road To Preakness

Racing News
Posted 06.03.11 at 1:41

Following a Monday off in honor of Memorial Day, Night School hits phase two of its 40-week national fan education run on June 6 with a discussion of “Multi-Race Wagering Strategies”.

Through 14 sessions, the interactive on-line program has exceeded the 30,000 cumulative mark in attendees, as horse racing fans worldwide are treated to a 90-minute expert discussion on various industry topics. The Night School sessions tackle a unique aspect of racing each week and include a well-rounded expert panel and hundreds of questions from a fan base eager to learn more.

Created by Horse Player NOW’s Joe Kristufek and Jeremy Plonk, Night School is featured on more than 30 websites throughout the horse racing industry and debuted on Feb. 21. Presenting sponsors are Keeneland, the American Quarter Horse Association, National Thoroughbred Racing Association and Daily Racing Form. The collective acceptance of Night School by often-competing factions in the industry has been a remarkable success and indicator that racing fans are returning to the front burner of the industry’s consciousness.

Panelists who have lent their expertise in recent sessions, in addition to Plonk and Kristufek’s weekly appearances, have included Caton Bredar, Jill Byrne, Jerry Bailey, Gary Stevens, Donna Barton-Brothers, Ken McPeek, Tom Amoss, Randy Moss, Jay Privman, Mike Welsch, Terry Finley, Dan Metzger and Rene Kierans.

On June 13, Night School will explore “Breaking Into the Industry” with Doug Reed of the University of Arizona’s Racetrack Industry Program serving as a guest panelist. On June 20, Daily Racing Form’s Steve Crist joins the panel to discuss “Pick Six Wagering Strategies”, and on June 27, American Quarter Horse handicapping will take center stage.

On Preakness Saturday at Pimlico, Horse Player NOW took the Night School fan education teachings to the infield. Armed with wipe boards and markers, television monitors and a public address sound system, the team mingled with and educated fans of all levels (see attached photos) in the Wagering 101 tent.

“We were asked by fans who attended the 2010 Preakness infield if we could enhance the Wagering 101 experience and we responded,” said the Maryland Jockey Club’s vice president of communications Mike Gathagan. “We tripled in size of the area, and the pros from Horse Player NOW were in full force with helpful tips on the entire Preakness day card.”

Thousands of potential racing fans passed through the Wagering 101 tent throughout the course of the day, and were educated in simple wagering strategies and how to read the information in the track program.

“Fans of all makes and models, interests and demographics passed through the tent and nearly all left with the same impression – racing is a whole lot more interesting when you understand what you’re doing,” said Horse Player NOW’s managing partner Jeremy Plonk. “Their level of appreciation repeated itself over and over, which was most rewarding to those of us in the teaching mode.”

“I’m tired of all the negativity within the industry,” said Horse Player NOW co-owner Joe Kristufek. “People keep complaining that the horseplayer is a dying breed, but most of them aren’t willing to make an effort to do something about it. New and intermediate fans who visited us in the tent were craving knowledge. Education is what Horse Player NOW is all about, our staff isn’t afraid to get into the trenches and get our hands dirty. The future of racing depends on it.”

Fans can access Night School live each Monday from 5:30 to 7 p.m. PDT, or catch it in the archive tab “Completed Events.” Archives are available on all websites that carry the program, as well as access to any downloadable videos, study materials and more. Night School continues its 40-week run through December 19.

Horse Player NOW is co-owned, managed and operated by lifelong racing enthusiasts Joe Kristufek and Jeremy Plonk, who share worlds of combined experience working on the inside of the industry. They bring an array of insight while placing the horseplayer first. For more information, visit or contact Jeremy Plonk at or 570-459-4501.


March 2013

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