Mike Heshmati Wins Final WSOP Circuit Gold Ring of the Season at Harveys Lake Tahoe

Winter Blizzard in High Sierras Fails to Freeze Turnout at Another Circuit Series

Stateline, NV – The winner of the tenth and final World Series of Poker Circuit gold ring event held at the Harveys Lake Tahoe Resort and Casino is Mike Heshmati, from Morgan Hill, CA.

Heshmati collected $9,590 in prize money.  He was presented with his first gold ring, which is the ultimate token of achievement awarded for winning a WSOP Circuit event.  This marks his fifth year to play on the WSOP Circuit.  He cashed once previously, back in 2008.  Heshmati is a 37-year-old project manager. 


The $345 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournament began on Monday at noon and ended Tuesday night.  The tournament attracted a decent turnout of 11 players, a sizable number considering there three feet of snow fell in the last two days and many roads leading into South Lake Tahoe were closed.

The overall winner in the point race for this year’s Harveys Lake Tahoe series is Andrew Barber, from Rocklin, CA.  He edged out two rivals -- Tom Masinter and John Deng, both of whom won gold ring events.  Barber won the point tally with a second and a third place finish in two events.  He also cashed in the Main Event.

Joining the Main Event champion Stan Quinn, Barber earned an automatic bid into the WSOP Circuit National Championship.

This year, all players on the WSOP Circuit who cash will accumulate points which are used to qualify towards the WSOP Circuit National Championship.  The tournament is 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.

This was the final WSOP Circuit gold ring event held this year at Harveys Lake Tahoe.  The 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)
Stan Quinn (Event #9 MAIN EVENT champion – NLHE)
Mike Heshmati (Event #10 champion – NLHE)

A total of 2,197 players participated in the ten WSOP Circuit events played at this year's Harveys Lake Tahoe series.  That means each event has attracted an average of 220 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 now completed 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.

This is the seventh WSOP Circuit stop to be held at Harveys Lake Tahoe.  It is one of only three stops which have been a part of the WSOP Circuit season every year.  The others are Harrah’s Rincon (San Diego) and Harrah’s Atlantic City.
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.  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.


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.