The 2011 Foxwoods World Poker Finals $10,000 No-Limit Championship became a showdown between two of the top three chip leaders to start final table action. In the end, Daniel Santoro, of North Bellmore NY, captured the 2011 Foxwoods World Poker Finals $10,000 no-limit championship. Santoro’s payday was $449,910, which included a $25,500 seat to the WPT championship in Las Vegas.
Three hours of heads-up action between Christian Harder of Annapolis, MD, and Daniel Santoro resulted in five all-in hands, with the short stack winning each of the confrontations. Harder won the first four with the fourth finally giving him the chip lead. Four hands later Santoro recaptured the chip lead when he faced his first elimination hand.
by Lou Krieger
Each year the world’s best poker players and myriad pretenders converge in Las Vegas to compete in the World Series of Poker. The series used to be held downtown, at Binion’s Horseshoe in “Glitter Gulch,” but ever since Harrah’s purchased the WSOP and moved it to the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino just off the Strip, its growth, success, and popularity over the past half-decade has been almost unimaginable. The Rio’s big draw is its convention center, which is large enough to hold more poker players than you could ever imagine convening in one place, if you haven’t yet seen and experienced it for yourself.
At 56-years-old, Robert Castoire is a ship’s officer marking his twelfth circuit cash, ninth final table and third victory. Castoire’s prior circuit win came at the hands of Mark “Pegasus” Smith as Castoire beat him heads-up at Choctaw. The two have played five final tables together, and Pegasus has outlasted Castoire three times. But not this time.
By Greg Sellgren
The race was on at Daytona Beach Kennel Club & Poker room, and frontrunner Nick Schwarmann of Orlando personally knocked out every opponent until he had the first-place money of $167,940 in his hands. After only a few hands heads up, Schwarmann’s queen-six flopped a six against Rebecca Koransky’s ace-nine, sending her back to Longwood, Florida with $83,970 in second place. Travis Klein (third place) and Joe Stempek (fifth place) were two of five locals representing Florida at the final table. Stempek was able to double his short stack, but was eliminated by Schwarmann for $33,588.
The main event at the Bicycle Casino’s Big Poker Oktober festival was big alright, as 5,057 players took 4,112 re-buys, and the bargain-priced $125 + $25 tournament generated a prize pool of $1,012,025. When all was said and done, 495 players made the pay ladder, but Duey Duong, of Aliso Viejo, CA was on the highest rung of all. He defeated Kevin Lewhailer heads-up to claim first place money of $252,425 after overcoming a huge field.
Lewhailer, from Los Angeles, took home $125,000 for finishing second. Gary Fessia finished third, to win $62,400. Brian Patrick and Harry Williams claimed $32,000 and $22,500 respectively for their fourth and fifth place finishes.
The Seniors Poker Group and guests recently enjoyed two special poker events at the Claude Pepper Senior Citizen Center in Los Angeles as part of a current series of classes focused on “Six Ways to be Sure You are a LOSER,” taught by me. On Aug. 19, high-stakes poker pro Yosh Nakano—founder of the International Poker Players Association—recalled his experiences playing against some of the top poker players, including Doyle Brunson, the late Stu Ungar, and Johnny Chan, as well as in Larry Flynt’s very high stakes home games. On September 2, our special guest was Barbara Enright, the only woman elected to the Poker Hall of Fame and the only woman to ever reach the final table at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event.
Full Tilt’s Alderney License Yanked, Company Sold to French Investors
Among a handful of important news items surrounding embattled online poker giant Full Tilt Poker was the decision by UK regulatory agency Alderney Gambling Control Commission (AGCC) to withdraw licensure of Full Tilt and several of its subsidiary firms. In its decision, the AGCC asserted that “FTP had fundamentally misled AGCC about their operational integrity by continuously reporting as liquid funds balances that had been covertly seized or restrained by US authorities, or that were otherwise not actually available to the operator. Serious breaches of AGCC regulations include false reporting, unauthorized provision of credit, and failure to report material events.”
by Barbara Rogers
Seneca Niagara in Niagara Falls, New York stood their ground against some of the biggest tournaments in the country, hosting their Fall Classic Poker Championship in September. Poker room manager John Wood said, “against all odds the Seneca Gaming and Entertainment Poker Team held their Fall Classic.” It all starts at the top with Director of Seneca Gaming and Entertainment Tina Abrams, who has the vision and passion necessary for poker that enabled this success. And huge it was, when more than 775 players showed up for four days of non-stop tournament action. They were rewarded with over $300,000 in prize pool payouts.
Pegasus Flies High in Indiana: Mark Smith Becomes the WSOPC’s All-Time Ring Leader
Horseshoe Southern Indiana, Mark “Pegasus” Smith captured his fifth circuit gold ring in Event No. 1, $345 no-limit hold’em, surpassing Men “The Master” Nguyen and Chris Reslock to stand as the all-time circuit event ring leader. When the final table began, three players busted within a few minutes, leaving six to play it out for the gold ring. Play slowed down a bit, and five hours into the final table, three players remained.
Smith then acquired a massive chip lead and went on to defeat Christian Schumacher of St. Paul Park, MN for the title, earning $19,441for his finish.
Boardwalk Empire: Bobby “the Blade” Oboodi Bloodies Borgata’s Big Field
Although players around him at the Borgata Poker Open final table were forced to put their tournament life at risk repeatedly, Bobby Oboodi made it through the final table without ever being all-in, cruising to his first World Poker Tour title and a $922,441 payday.