Has a New Ruler
Caldwell Wins $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em Championship
Becomes Fourth Canadian Gold Bracelet Winner in 2011
Salesman from Ontario Collects $668,276 Top Prize
Full House at
the 2011 WSOP-- Tournament Attendance Up 11 Percent Over Last Year
Bracelets Won – 26 More Still to Go
upon a time, there was a magical kingdom filled with poker players.
The kingdom was quite
small. It was led by a succession of royal dynasties. Everyone
recognized and respected the rulers. They were powerful and seemingly
The rulers of
the small kingdom earned their rites. Most of the kings and princes
brought along decades of experience to each reign. Year by year, they
gained wisdom from what they had done before and built empires upon the
experiences of the past.
But as years
passed, many outside the kingdom attempted to challenge the hierarchy.
For a long while, all attempts to challenge the authority of the wise men
failed. Some of the challengers were permitted to remain within the
kingdom following defeat. But they lived and worked as fiefs in a feudal
pecking order until they too, could rise and become rulers themselves. It
was a pyramid of power and wealth based upon years and years of poker
Then came the revolution.
One by one, the kings were
gradually overthrown. They were toppled from power by a young brazen band
of invaders. As they continued to flood into the kingdom, the size of the
empire grew. And with their vast numbers, the feudal lords became less
and less powerful. By the end of the 20th Century, their power and
mystique had all but disappeared.
A new emerging underclass took
their place. Many of the newcomers were in their 20s. No longer
were the rulers of the kingdom men in their 50s and 60s. The most
powerful forces within the kingdom became the younger people, who had brand new
ideas about the proper way of doing things.
By 2011, all that remained of
the old kingdom were distant memories. Few remembered how the kingdom was
before, nor recognized what it had become. The kingdom exploded in size
and power. Instead of just a few hundred subjects, the kingdom came to
include tens of thousands. What happened within the kingdom was watched
and followed closely by millions of people in more than a hundred nations
around the world. Those responsible for maintaining the kingdom built a
newer, flasher, bigger palace. People from all over talked about the
kingdom. They wanted to visit the kingdom and see its treasures.
And as they came, the old guard continued to disappear from memory.
On June 18, 2011 an army of
2,828 warriors stormed the castle. For three long days, the forces
battled. By the end of the conflict, only one warrior remained standing
on the battlefield. He would come to rule the kingdom. It was
discovered that the new ruler came from a vast frigid land to the north.
His name was Kirk Caldwell.
For the eighth time this year, a
poker player who had never previously cashed in any World Series of Poker
tournament ever in his life, won a gold bracelet. High-stakes tournament
experience simply didn't matter when the cards were dealt and the chips began
circulating in a whirlwind of frenzy. A younger, hungrier, more
determined challenger rose to the top of the poker hierarchy and added yet
another cannon blast into the drawbridge of what had previously been a dynasty
based on the notion that it takes experience to win.
Kirk A. Caldwell won the latest
tournament at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. The 31-year-old
Canadian who works in retail sales, enjoyed the biggest score of his life by
winning the $1,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournament. This was Event #32
on the 2011 WSOP schedule.
collected the fabulous sum of $668,276 in prize money. He was also
awarded the symbol of supreme achievement in the game – the WSOP gold
bracelet. He became the fourth Canadian to win a WSOP crown, so far this
to his ultimate conquest with the help of his friends. A few months prior
to the tournament, several of his buddies in the Toronto, Ontario area decided
to host a mini-satellite, with the top prize being a trip to Las Vegas with an
entry fee into a gold bracelet event. Caldwell won the first
battle. Then, he won the second, too.
And so, Caldwell rules the
kingdom, at least until the next battle comes. He rules, until the next
campaign when he too shall be challenged by a new band of invaders.
Inevitably, he too shall be toppled from power as all rulers eventually
are. Yet he shall forever have this one shining day and this indelible
memory of when the entire poker kingdom was his and his alone.
For a comprehensive recap of Event #32,
please visit the WSOP.com tournament portal page HERE.
EVENT #32 CHAMPION – KIRK A. CALDWELL
World Series of Poker $1,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em champion is Kirk A.
Caldwell, from Orangeville, Ontario (Canada).
Caldwell is a
31-year-old retail sales clerk.
born in Brampton, Ontario (Canada).
nickname is “Pudge.”
the first year Caldwell has attended the WSOP.
earned his travel funds and entry fee into this tournament by winning a small
private single-table satellite with friends in Ontario. One of the organizers of the regular poker
game decided to host a mini-tournament which included the chance to come to Las
Vegas and play in a gold bracelet event.
The stipulation was that the winner pledged 15 percent of his action to
the players in the group.
Based on the
agreement, Caldwell’s poker buddies received the lump sum of $100,241,40.
victory, Caldwell collected $668,276 for first place.
Caldwell’s first time ever to cash in a WSOP event. He becomes the eighth first-time casher to
win gold bracelet this year.
official records, Caldwell now has 1 win, 1 final table appearance and 1
in-the-money finish at the WSOP.
has $668,276 in career WSOP winnings.
to be classified as an amateur poker player (in WSOP records and stats). He is the fourth pure amateur to win a gold
bracelet this year.
becomes the fourth Canadian citizen to win a gold bracelet at the 2011
WSOP. This matched the total number of
wins by Canadian players last year.
THE FINAL TABLE
final table was comprised of the top nine finishers.
The final table
contained no former gold bracelet winners.
This was the seventh (of 32) final tables with no previous winners,
which guaranteed a first-time champion.
were represented at the final table – Brazil (1 player), Canada (3 players) and
the United States (5 players).
took three of the top four money positions, and four places among the top ten.
runner up was Corbin White, from Austin, TX. He earned a nice consolation prize amounting
play began at 8 pm on a Monday evening.
Played concluded at 3:10 am, early on Tuesday morning.
table was played on ESPN’s so-called secondary stage. The main stage was used to host the
Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split World Championship, which ran at the same time. The
new final table set this year is getting raves in terms of design and
streamed live over WSOP.com. Viewers can
tune in and watch most of this year’s final tables. Although hole cards are not shown, viewers
can follow an overhead camera as well as a pan-shot of the table. The floor announcer provides an official
account of the action.
OTHER IN-THE-MONEY FINISHERS
The top 297
finishers collected prize money.
gold bracelet winners who cashed in this tournament -- aside from those who
made the final table – were the following players: Layne Flack (197) and T.J. Cloutier (200).
With his cash
in this tournament, Poker Hall of Famer T.J. Cloutier has now cashed 25 of the
last 26 years at the WSOP.
are to be included in all official WSOP records. Results are also to be included in the 2011
WSOP “Player of the Year” race.
of the Year” standings can be found at WSOP.com HERE.
ODDS AND ENDS
tournament attracted 2,828 entries. All
$1,000 and $1,500 buy-in events this year so far, have attracted 2,500-plus
This is the 924th
gold bracelet awarded in World Series of Poker history. This figure includes every official WSOP
event ever played, including tournaments during the early years when there were
no actual gold bracelets awarded. It
also includes the 16 gold bracelets awarded to date at WSOP Europe (2007-2010). Moreover for the first time ever, one gold
bracelet was awarded for this year’s winner of the WSOP Circuit National
WSOP gold bracelet ceremony takes place on the day following the winner’s
victory (or some hours later when the tournament ends very late). The ceremony takes place inside The Pavilion,
which is the expansive main tournament room hosting all noon starts this
year. The ceremony begins at the
conclusion of the first break of the noon tournament. The ceremony usually starts around 2:20
pm. The national anthem of the winner’s
nation is played. The entire
presentation is open to the public and media.
Video and photography is permitted by both the public and members of the
bracelet ceremony took place on Tuesday, June 21st. The national anthem of Canada was played in
honor of his victory.
was scheduled to be played over three consecutive days/nights – but extended
into a fourth day due to the late finish.
Day One began
with 2,828 entries and ended with 362 survivors.
Day Two began
with 362 players and ended with 35 survivors.
began with 35 players, which played down to the winner.
officially began on Saturday, June 18th at noon. The tournament officially ended early Tuesday
morning, June 21st, at 3:10 am.
2011 WSOP STATISTICS
Through the conclusion
of Event #32, the 2011 WSOP has attracted 41,286 combined total entries. $62,559,360 in prize money has been awarded
conclusion of this tournament, the breakdown of nationality of gold bracelet
winners has been:
conclusion of this tournament, the national origin (birthplace) of winners has
conclusion of this event, the home-states of (American) winners have been:
New York (3)
conclusion of this tournament, the breakdown of professional poker players to
semi-pros and amateurs who won gold bracelets has been:
(25): Jake Cody, Cheech Barbaro, Eugene
Katchalov, Allen Bari, Harrison Wilder, Matt Perrins, Sean Getzwiller,
Viacheslav Zhukov, David Diaz, Andrew Badecker, Tyler Bonkowski, Brian Rast,
John Juanda, Aaron Steury, Darren Woods, Jason Somerville, Bertrand
Grospellier, John Monnette, Elie Payon, Mark Radoja, Chris Viox, Dan Idema,
Andy Frankenberger, Chris Lee and Sam Stein
Semi-Pros (3): Sean R. Drake, Amir Lehavot, Oleksii
Amateurs (4): Geffrey Klein, Foster Hays, James Hess, Kirk
tracking first started in 2005, this year’s WSOP has the greatest disparity of
professionals winning over semi-pros and amateurs than any year recorded, so
far – with 25 out of 32 events being won by pros.
conclusion of this tournament, the victories of 8 of the 32 winners (25
percent) marked the first time the new champion had ever cashed at the WSOP.
held over the past 11 years has included at least one multiple gold bracelet
champion (meaning two or more wins within the same year). The last year the WSOP was comprised
exclusively of single-event winners was back in 1999. The record for most multiple gold bracelet
winners within a single year was in 2009, when five players managed to win two
or more titles. So far, no player has
yet won two gold bracelets (this year).
The streak of
consecutive male WSOP gold bracelet winners has now reached 192 consecutive
events. Aside from the annual Ladies
Championship, the last female player to win a WSOP tournament open to both
sexes was Vanessa Selbst, in 2008. The
longest “cold” streak for female players occurred between years 1982 and 1996,
when 221 consecutive open events passed without a female champion.
finish by any female (open events) at this year’s WSOP was by two players --
Maria Ho, who finished second ($5,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em) and Kim Nguyen,
who also finished as the runner up ($1,500 buy-in Six-Handed Limit Hold’em).
finish by any defending champion at this year’s WSOP was by David Baker, who
finished in sixth place after winning the previous $10,000 buy-in No-Limit
Deuce-to-Seven Draw Lowball World Championship.
tournament records set at the 2011 WSOP (to date):
Heads-Up tournament prize pool in history ($3,040,000) – Event #2
live Omaha High-Low Split Tournament in history (925 entries) – Event #3
live Six-Handed tournament in poker history (1,920 entries) – Event #10
Deuce-to-Seven tournament prize pool in history ($1,184,400) – Event #16
live $1,500 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournament in history with single day start
(3157 entries) – Event #18
live $1,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em tournament in history with single day start
(3175 entries) – Event #20
consecutive-days starting field sizes in poker history (combined 6,350 entries)
– Event #18 and Event #20
live Pot-Limit Omaha tournament in poker history (1,071 entries) – Event #22
Mixed-Game (Eight-Game Mix) in poker history (489 entries) – Event #23
Seniors tournament in poker history (3,752 entries) – Event #30
Seniors No-Limit Hold’em championship prize pool in history ($3,376,800) –
single-day live tournament start in poker history (3,752 entries) – Event #30
records set at the 2011 WSOP (to date):
35-year span between Artie Cobb’s first cash in this event (1976) and most
recent cash in the same event (2011) represents the longest time span in WSOP
history. He accomplished this in
Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split (Event #25).
Hellmuth added to his record as the individual all-time leader in cashes (80)
and final table appearances (41), with his second-place finish in the
Deuce-to-Seven Lowball Championship (Event #16).
RAISING AWARENESS: BAD BEAT ON CANCER AND THE WSOP
Bad Beat on
Cancer was created in 2003 by Phil Gordon and Rafe Furst as an easy and fun way
for poker players to donate to the Prevent Cancer Foundation. It all began when Chris Moneymaker pledged 1
percent of his 2003 Main Event winnings and went on to capture the championship,
contributing $25,000 when he was awarded the $2.500,000 first- place prize. By taking the pledge, wearing the patch, and
joining ‘Team 1%’, players can feel good supporting a cause that only benefits
when they win. As the official charity
of the WSOP, pledges simply indicate to the payouts staff that they are
donating 1 percent of their winnings, and the funds are automatically withheld.
A tax receipt is generated and sent to
their mailing address. Several high
profile professionals have made ‘life pledges’ of 1 percent of all their
winnings -- including Annie Duke, Phil Hellmuth Jr., Lee Childs, Paul Wasicka,
Andy Bloch, Dennis Phillips and others. Since
2003, the initiative has raised over $3,500,000 for cancer prevention research,
education, and community outreach programs.
Players can pick up a patch and join Team 1% by stopping by the Bad Beat
on Cancer booth, located at the 2011 WSOP opposite the Amazon Room in the
Nevada Cancer Institute based in Las Vegas is a benefitting charity from the
Bad Beat on Cancer.