TUNICA, MS. – Jim Mink is the winner of Ring Event #7, $345 buy-in H.O.R.S.E. at Harrah’s Tunica. Mink works as an oilfield consultant in his hometown of Houston, TX.

Since his first major tournament cash at a final table here at Harrah’s Tunica back in 2007, Mink has been drilling the Circuit, searching for that first victory. It would take three years and as many final tables for him to finally reach WSOPC black gold, but Mink, who works in one of the most high-risk/high-reward industries in the world, knows all too well about what they say about something worth having.

76 players entered in the Superbowl-Sunday start event at Harrah’s Tunica and generated a total prize pool of $22,116. The tournament was originally scheduled to go two days, but the final nine players agreed to play it out for the $6,983 first place prize, the gold ring and 50 points toward the Circuit National Championship. The elimination of the money bubble in ninth marked the start of the official final table with Mink near the top of the leader board.




Chip Count

Josh Palmer

Daphne, AL



Jim Mink

Houston, TX



Jeff Welch

Greenfield, IN



Scott Carlson

Tampa, FL



David Perkins

Kansas City, KS



Christopher Wolfe

Rolla, MO



Shane Paxton

Greenfield, IA



Steve Winkel

Germantown, TN




While the final table of ring event #6 ($555 buy-in NLH) was still in its middle stages, final table play of the H.O.R.S.E. event began at 6:25pm with the eight mixed game finalists each with their eye on a Circuit win.

Play began in the hold’em round with blinds at 3,000/6,000 and limits of 6,000/12,000. Stephen Winkez saw an early exit in that round after running A-K into David Perkins’ pocket aces. In his third major live tournament cash, the Germantown, TN resident took home $820.

Perkins was in turn eliminated in the stud round after moving the rest of his chips all-in on fourth street with 3x-Jx-Ac-Kx against what appeared to be a benign hand in front of Christopher Wolfe X-X- - . Wolfe was far ahead than Perkins knew however, calling and revealing his two down cards -   . Blanks through the final street were dealt to both players and Perkins, a 29-year-old poker player from Kansas City, KS was eliminated.  He earned $950 for seventh.

In the same round, Shane Paxton was eliminated in sixth place, worth $1,154, after losing a hand all-in on fifth street against Jim Mink. Mink’s trip sixes beat Paxton’s tens and his day was finished. Paxton is a 28-year-old former hospitality manager turned poker player from Greenfield, IA. He is a veteran of the 82nd airborne infantry division who began playing poker back in 2000.

Josh Palmer, a former insurance salesman turned pro was eliminated in fifth place after three-betting all-in    to Wolfe in the hold’em round. Wolfe was behind on a queen-high flop with his   , but turned a king and stayed ahead after the   hit the river. Palmer took home $1,475.

With antes and bring ins of 2,000/4,000 the razz level saw two more players hit the rail. Scott Carlson was the first to exit after he was unable to pick up a fifth non-pairing low card to go along with his      in an all-in against Mink. Carlson’s Ace to jack was no good against Mink’s A-8 low and Carlson, a senior writer for rakeback.com headed off to pick up $1,991 for 4th.

Wolfe was eliminated in 3rd place in an all-in with 7x-3x-10x. The resulting hand was an A-10 low which was trumped by Jeff Welch’s A-9 low hand. Wolfe earned $2,844 for third.

Heads-up play between Mink and Welch began at 1:35 am. Mink was down to a 2-1 chip deficit against Welch, but played masterfully during the one on one matchup to pull even in chips before surging to a dominating lead. With his opponent down to a few big blinds in the Omaha 8 round, Mink managed to scoop the final hand with  [   . For his runner up finish, Welch pocketed $4,321.

Mink, who had numerous final table finishes, including a runner-up finish in last year’s event here at Tunica was more than happy to finally claim victory at the WSOPC along with a modest first place prize of $6,983.

Mink said after his win that because of his profession, he doesn’t get a chance to play all that often and that it was “a thrill” to finally take one down.

Still to come are 25 events and 2 ring events. See the complete Harrah’s Tunica Circuit schedule and previous results here.  The WSOP Circuit at Tunica runs through February 15th. You can find the complete 2010/2011 WSOP CIRCUIT SCHEDULE here.