We now have the all important stats for this event.
A total of 745 players have entered the WPT La Poker Classic which has generated a prize pool of $7,152,000. First prize will be a cool $1,778,001 and even 2nd place will walk away over $1,000,000. With the top 72 places getting paid, there is plenty to play for.
Tournament Director, Matt Savage told me he is delighted with the turnout. Matt has done a lot of work re-vamping the whole tournament structure for the entire LA Poker Classic series. As well as the main event, Matt introduced a lot of new side events which has increased the overall turnout for the series. This has helped make the LA Poker Classic the second biggest poker event behind the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas.
Looking around the tournament room, there were a lot of late entrants. It is always the top players who arrive during the 2nd or 3rd level. Maybe they think they do not have to bother themselves with the early stages – who knows. Some the late entrants included Peter Eastgate, Bertrand ‘Elky’ Grospellier, Chris Ferguson, Joe Hachem and Annie Duke. Some of them did not hang around long. I saw Peter Eastgate hit the rail soon after he sat down. I was very disappointed that Mike Matusow was had also left the tournament room before I had a chance to get a copy of his book. Unless he comes back tomorrow, I’ll have to look on Amazon.
Many of the partypoker players are sitting with very nice chip stacks. Unfortunately as we reached the later stages of the day we lost a couple of our players. Robert from Sweden was seen heading to rail at about 7pm. He has come out to Los Angeles with his family so I’m sure they will enjoy their time here. Mario from Germany and Joe from Canada were also missing from their chairs so I presumed they have also busted.
By the time the chips were bagged up at 8.30pm we still had 11 players left in the tournament.
Here are the important chip counts at the end of Day 1.
- Chip leader is Masa Kagawa with 124,575 chips
Partypoker players in position and with chip counts:
27 Sergei Norikov 71,025
28 Malte Moennig 70,950
71 Jeff Kimber 50,600
98 Andrey Marsev 44,575
109 Salvatore De Luca 42,975
200 Rudger Gravestein 31,450
219 Marco Callari 29,300
266 Mykhailo Demydenko 24,875
306 Nicholas Verkaik 20,000
326 George Grant 18,225
406 Gavin Greenwood 11,650
Speaking with the players as they left the tournament room, many were happy with their days work and were looking forward to Saturday. Many went into Los Angeles for dinner in a chic restaurant in Beverly Hills. Because it was Friday night, some were hoping they might run into a famous movie star. Unfortunately we only saw other poker players. But at least the dinner was delicious
We are back on Saturday for Day 2.