Hammond, IN (October 14, 2011)—Shattered. Obliterated. Crushed. Dominated. You pick the word. It’s business as usual at Horseshoe Hammond as yet another attendance record has been, well… Annihilated!

Hammond has made a name for itself as one of the largest and most successful WSOP Circuit stops. In 2009, a year after its opening, it set the single tournament attendance record in Event #1 with a whopping 1,412 entrants. A year later, it raised the bar by surpassing its own mark and hosting 1,611 players. That number was good enough to make it the largest poker tournament ever held in the Chicago area. 

Hammond has done it again this year by attracting an astounding 3,001 players in Event #1. That’s almost 1,400 more players than last year!

“The growth here in Hammond just continues year after year,” Charles Ciresi, tournament director, said. “As soon as you think it can’t get any bigger, the players keep coming out.”

The $350 re-entry tournament will pay 297 players a piece of the $873,291 prizepool. The champion will walk away with a cool $124,438. Not a bad return on a $350 buy-in!

Competition is taking place in the expansive concert hall, The Venue. Typically reserved for entertainment acts from all over the country, the WSOPC has taken over the 3,400 seat arena and filled it with poker tables and dealer chairs. 

When this tournament began on Thursday, October 13, every seat in The Venue (located on the third floor) was filled. Tables were reserved in first floor poker room to accommodate the larger number of players, and even more were set up in Vintage 51, a bar right outside the poker room, to host single-table satellites. Despite these added measures, over 500 alternates were seated over the two starting days of Event #1.

This is the fourth year Hammond has hosted the WSOP Circuit, and the third consecutive year it has set an attendance record. Big things are in store for Hammond in the years to come.

“There’s no reason why we can’t hit 3,500 to 4,000 next year,” Ciresi said. “We’re thinking Las Vegas in July numbers.”

The WSOP Circuit will take place at Horseshoe Hammond through October 24. There will be 12 ring events as well as daily satellites and nightly 7 p.m. tournaments.

To see full registration and prizepool information for Event #1, click HERE.

A full schedule of all tournaments taking place at Horseshoe Hammond is available HERE.

Stay glued to WSOP.com for all tournament information and final reports.

Each final table of the 2011/2012 Circuit tour will be streamed live on WSOP.com.