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Luxembourg is not the first country that springs to mind when you think of poker but it could be where the Grand Prix UK Knockout title is heading after the weekend. Goncalo Castanheira hails from the tiny country but his stack in the $109 buy-in $250,000 guaranteed online event is anything but small. His 1,845,236 chips are enough to lead the 120 players who have progressed to Day 2.

In addition to his tournament-leading stack, Castanheira has accumulated $231.25 worth of bounty payments, which means he has already recouped his tournament buy-in and then some.

Second-placed Viorel-Ioan Popa has 1,621,729 chips in their stack and will fancy their chances of going all the way when Day 2 commences on March 7.

Slightly further down the chip counts, you find a trio of players who are regulars in high-stakes events. Ben Warrington (1,560,776), Joshua McCully (1,368,221), and Christophe De Muelder (1,333,662) have done their chances of glory no harm at all by getting of to blistering starts.

Team Online’s Matthew Staples is through to Day 2 but with a shallower stack of 356,274 chips. Staples has not yet bagged a bounty but is guaranteed at least a min-cash for his efforts, as are all Day 2 players.

There are 16 Day 1s left, including today, if you want to catch the Luxembourg-based grinder. Some 803 players have bought in so far, meaning another 1,697 players are required to hit the $250,000 guarantee.

Grand Prix UK Online Knockout Top 10 Chip Counts

Place Player Country Bounties Chips
1 Goncalo Castanheira Luxembourg $231.25 1,845,236
2 Viorel-Ioan Popa United Kingdom $50 1,621,729
3 Vojtech Skalak Czech Republic $125 1,575,342
4 Alan Ford United Kingdom $281.25 1,569,681
5 Ben Warrington United Kingdom $112.50 1,560,776
6 Kolja Keller Germany $256.25 1,411,186
7 Joshua McCully New Zealand $50 1,368,221
8 Christophe De Meulder Belgium $268.75 1,333,662
9 Assad Kamran Argentina $275 1,309,005
10 Patrizio Di Miceli Germany $143.75 1,297,516

Vamos! Augusto Leads The Mini Knockout

The $11 buy-in $50,000 guaranteed Grand Prix UK Mini Knockout has seen 2,330 players buy in so far, with 341 of those starters punching their tickets for Day 2. None of those 341 survivors has more chips than Brazil’s Marcelo Augusto, who turned his 100,000 starting stack into a tournament-leading 2,287,437.

Augusto also collected 25.31 worth of scalps after sending six opponents to the rail on his march to the top of the chip counts.

Only two other players have managed to break through the two-million chip barrier. Joseph McAfferty has 2,158,807 chips and $40.31 worth of bounties, while Ivan Vankovich returns to the tables with an arsenal of 2,079,450 chips and $25.62 worth of bounty payments in tow.

Like its $109 buy-in bigger brother, there are 16 flights remaining in this value-packed event. Will you enter one and catch the Brazilian leader?

Grand Prix UK Online Mini Knockout Top 10 Chip Counts

Place Player Country Bounties Chips
1 Marcelo Augusto Brazil $25.31 2,287,437
2 Joseph McAfferty United Kingdom $40.31 2,158,807
3 Ivan Vankovich Belarus $25.62 2,079,450
4 Jernej Nemanic Slovenia $28.75 1,993,526
5 Nandor Fejes Hungary $14.99 1,926,778
6 Thomas Dimmock United Kingdom $18.75 1,865,364
7 Ayhan Danin Germany $30.78 1,702,861
8 Josue Carius Brazil $39.99 1,702,001
9 Marcin Galkowski Germany $23.74 1,681,602
10 Mirko Petrovski Malta $28.12 1,651,929

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