Daniel Black Holds Chip Lead at End of First Day
Stateline, NV -- A winter blizzard didn't stop Harveys Lake Tahoe from attracting an impressive turnout for its World Series of Poker Main Event Championship.
The $1,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold'em tournament attracted 246 entries, creating a $354,240 prize pool. The number of participants is up considerably from last year's number. The prize pool also increased by 15 percent, even though this year's buy-in was reduced from the previous year.
A massive snowstorm first hit the south shores of Lake Tahoe on Friday. By Sunday night, when the first day of tournament play had concluded, nearly three feet of snow had fallen around the Harveys Lake Tahoe Resort and Casino. Snow accumulation was even more severe in the mountains, particularly at the Heavenly Ski Resort, which is located just steps away from the main casino floor.
Despite many maintenance roads being closed due to white-out conditions, somehow 246 players managed to make it through the blizzard and take their seats when the tournament began on Sunday at noon. By midnight when play ended for the day, there were only 51 surviving players.
The end of Day One chip leader is Daniel Black, from Cloverdale, CA. He is one of only three players currently over the 200,000-chip mark. The other leaders are Stephen Brown and John Miner.
The average stack size is 96,470. Play resumes at 12 noon on Monday. The antes will be 400, with blinds at 1500-3000.
The Main Event Championship is a three-day tournament. Monday's action will play down to the final table consisting of nine players. The final table will be played on Tuesday.
This is the ninth of ten WSOP Circuit gold ring events being held this year at Harveys Lake Tahoe. The final gold ring event will be played on Monday-Tuesday (Nov. 22-23).
The first eight WSOP Circuit gold ring winners at Harveys Lake Tahoe were as follows:
Phillip Hui (Event #1 champion -- NLHE)
Manh Tran (Event #2 champion -- NLHE)
James Sparks (Event #3 champion – Omaha High-Low Split)
Devin Jackson (Event #4 champion – H.O.R.S.E.)
Cyle Curtis (Event #5 champion – NLHE)
Matthew Hughes (Event #6 champion – Six-Handed NLHE)
Joel Casper (Event #7 champion – NLHE)
Tom Masinter (Event #8 champion -- NLHE)
A total of 2,086 players have participated in the nine WSOP Circuit events played at this year's Haveys Lake Tahoe series. That means each event has attracted an average of 235 players.
The impressive attendance figures at Harveys Lake Tahoe are consistent with big turnouts at all WSOP Circuit stops, so far. All four WSOP Circuit events have experienced increases in both attendance and prize money. Numbers were up significantly at Council Bluffs, Hammond (Chicago), and Southern Indiana. A new addition to this year’s schedule held at the IP Casino-Resort and Spa in Biloxi also produced impressive numbers.
Harveys Lake Tahoe is located on the south shore of crystal blue Lake Tahoe, beneath a wall of snow-capped mountains, making for one of the most astounding views of any poker destination in the world.
Northern Nevada has a rich poker history. Few may remember that the WSOP had its origins, not in Las Vegas, but rather in Northern Nevada. The first WSOP-style tournament was played in Reno at the Holiday Casino in 1969. That first gathering of poker players was called the "Second Annual Gambling Fraternity Convention," and was won by Crandell Addington, later a Poker Hall of Fame inductee. Poker patriarch Benny Binion was so impressed with the concept that he held the first WSOP the following year at Binion's Horseshoe in Las Vegas, in 1970.
Now some 41 years later, poker remains alive and well in the Reno-Lake Tahoe area. In addition to the ten scheduled gold ring events on this year’s schedule, there are nightly No-Limit Hold'em tournaments and plenty of mega-satellites. Cash games are going on inside the poker room around the clock.
This year, all players on the WSOP Circuit can accumulate points which are used to qualify towards the WSOP Circuit National Championship tournament, to be held in May 2011 in Las Vegas. The $1 million freeroll tournament will be nationally televised and will be open to only 100 qualifiers. For the first time ever, a WSOP gold bracelet will be presented to the winner.
ABOUT HARVEYS LAKE TAHOE RESORT & CASINO
Harveys Resort & Casino is the largest resort casino property at Lake Tahoe. A wide variety of resort features include: 740 rooms and suites; nearly 75,000 square feet of casino space; five great restaurants including the stunning 19 Kitchen • Bar (overlooking beautiful Lake Tahoe), Hard Rock Cafe, Sammy Hagar’s famous Cabo Wabo Cantina and the elegant Sage Room Steakhouse (est. 1947); a full-service health club and pool; elaborate convention center services; Harveys Cabaret theatre (home of the Improv Comedy Club); race and sportsbook; poker room; wedding chapel; and family arcade. Harveys also presents the celebrated Lake Tahoe Summer Concert Series, which features superstar artists including Elton John, Eagles, Bob Dylan, Kenny Chesney and many more. In 2010, Harveys Resort & Casino was awarded 35 Casino Player Magazine Best of Gaming Awards including: Best Steakhouse (Sage Room); Best Headliners; Best Video and Reel Slots; Best Race/Sportsbook; Best Poker Room and Best Poker Tournaments. For more information and reservations, please visit: www.HarveysTahoe.com.