No matter how good a poker player you are, anytime you enter a major tournament, you're an underdog to win.  In fact, you're a huge underdog to win – a real longshot.

Well the Palm Beach Kennel Club is accustomed to seeing lots of underdogs around the race track, including many pups who turn into champions.  Such was the case today when a special dog named “Nidette” managed to win a major stakes race which was one of the biggest victories of the season in greyhound racing.

Poker players hope to follow Nidette's example.  A total of 646 of them jumped from the starting gate, which was set up in two different opening flights.  The first session began at 11 am and the second session started at 7 pm.  The night ended at 2:30 am.  Players played about eight hours in duration.

Going into the backstretch at the conclusion of Day One are 249 runners who will jockey for position on Day Two, to be played on Sunday. Leading the pack is Steven Bennett, who is the only player above the 200,000-chip mark.

But plenty of other dogs are barking in this field, including – 2007 World Champion Jerry Yang, tow-time gold bracelet winner Josh Arieh, longtime pro Manny Minaya, Circuit multiple gold ring winner David Nicholson, dual gold ring winner Nancy Birnbaum, Rex Clinkscales, and many others.

Here's a glance at the top ten:

Steven Bennett    --    213,900
Chris Rauscher    --    165,300
Michael Johnson    --    163,300
Mark Kerness    --    154,400
Jonathan Bakishian    --    149,300
Ryan Carter    --    141,200
Bruce Yarmron    --    134,000
Natasha Barbour    --    133,200
Clarence Jones    --    130,300
Phillip Hui    --    113,000
 

Players are getting some much-needed rest on Saturday night as action resumes on Sunday at 2 pm.  We'll run around the poker track so to speak for about 12 hours and then be closer to the homestretch.  The final table will be played on Monday and will be livestreamed on ESPN3 with commentary from host Bernard Lee.

Also note that it's not too late and join the race.  Registration for the Main Event stays open until shortly before play resumes at 2pm on Sunday.  The entry fee is $1,675.

The prize pool and payouts will be announced on Sunday.  You can follow all of the Day 2 action with our live updates from the floor.