Springfield's Jones enjoys dominant Day 2 in Main Event

This page is the hub for information on the WSOP Circuit at Horseshoe Tunica Hotel and Casino. Check back here (http://wsop.com/n/8fo) for information and links on this ongoing tournament series.

Tunica, Mississippi (6 May 2019) - Twenty-seven-year-old Blake Whittington, a North Carolina native now living in Chattanooga, Tennessee, had the weekend of his poker life at Circuit Horseshoe Tunica, culminating in his triumph and personal-best $151,789 payday in this Circuit series' Main Event.

After a slow first weekend for Whittington, a tour regular, he caught fire. He only had a min-cash in the multi-flight Event #2, $400 No-Limit Hold'em, to show for his first five days of play. Then, in Event #6, $400 Pot-Limit Omaha, he finished as the runner-up, to Oregon's Maxwell Young in an event where Whittington and Young battled for the lead throughout the event's late stages.

Then things got even better for Whittington. In Thursday's Event #9, the single-day $400 No-Limit Hold'em, he finished the job, earning his fourth Circuit ring and a $23,883 cash over a final table loaded with prior ring winners. A short night of sleep later, he was back for the start of Flight A in Event #10, the stop's $1,700 No-Limit Hold'em Main Event.

After an evening where he came out on top of a couple of deep-stack collisions, he emerged as the flight's dominant chip leader, with over 700,000 in chips, and he stayed in the overall lead through the next day's Flight B as well. “I've never run like this,” he told the WSOP late on Day 1A. Once the two flights were merged for Sunday's Day 2, Whittington continued to run well, though he finished the day a distant second in chips to that day's runaway leader (and Main Event fourth-place finisher) Jesse Jones.

That left the Day 3 finale, where Whittington's run-well stayed true. He helped cripple Jones's stack and took a dominating lead with four players remaining, and he was never seriously challenged before he closed out his overall fifth Circuit win.

Whittington locked up an automatic entry into August's Global Casino Championship in Cherokee, NC by winning the Main Event. However, his series performance was so dominant, once he made the money in the Main Event, he would have emerged as the Tunica's Casino Champion and earned the automatic invite that way instead. After winning Event #9, Whittington held the lead in the Casino Champion race with 90 points, a lead he held until Young logged a min-cash in the stop's final event (Event #13) to nose ahead with a 92.5-point total.

Winning the Main Event, however, awards zero Casino Champion points, since the winner gets the automatic Casino Champion seat anyway. Had Whittington not won the main, however, he would easily have accumulated the points to retake the lead from Young. Young already has his own seat to Cherokee locked up, but he gets the official Casino Champion honor.

If there was an ongoing theme at Circuit Horseshoe Tunica, it was that prior Circuit winners did very well. In addition to Whittington's fourth and fifth Circuit rings and Young's sixth, another highlight of the 12-day series was the record-setting 13th Circuit win logged by West Palm Beach, Florida's Maurice Hawkins. Hawkins snapped a tie with California's Valentin Vornicu by claiming victory in Event #8, the 432-entry Monster Stack tourney, just three weeks after pulling even with Vornicu with an event win at the recent Cherokee stop.

The repeat winners didn't stop there. Arkansas' Daniel “Duma” Lowery, a full-time sawmill owner and part-time regional tourney player, collected his own eighth career ring by taking down Event #2, $400 No-Limit Hold'em Multi-Flight $200,000 Guaranteed. Lowery's $52,378 cash was the largest payday of the series outside the Main Event. And New York's Eric Rivkin closed out the schedule by winning Event #13: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Double Stack (1 Day), to collect his own second ring.


CASINO CHAMPION UPDATE

Maxwell Young's min-cash in Event #13 gives him a total of 92.5 points, just past Main Event winner Blake Whittington, giving Young the Casino Champion honors in Tunica.

 


  


COMPLETED EVENTS

Event #1: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Double Stack Big-Blind Ante (1 Day) - Michael Ledford tops a 260-entry field to earn $21,023 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #2: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Multi-Flight $200K Guaranteed - Daniel Lowery outlasts an 894-entry field to collect $52,378 and his eighth career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #3: $400 No-Limit Hold'em (1 Day) - Scot Wilken bests a 173-entry field to earn $15,410 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Noon - Day 3 of Event #10 (Main Event) 

$250 NLHE SENIORS I - Gary Kuykendall tops a 253-entry field to collect $12,399 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #4: $600 No-Limit Hold'em Big-Blind Ante - Sohale Khalili triumphs over a 196-entry field to earn $26,245 and his third career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #5: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Six-Handed - Charlie Dawson defeats a 190-entry field to win $17,243 and his second career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #6: $400 Pot-Limit Omaha - Maxwell Young emerges from a 124-entry field with an $11,456 winner's payday and his sixth career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #7: $400 No-Limit Hold'em (1 Day) - Charles Davis bests a 172-entry field to win $15,328 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #8: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Monster Stack - Maurice Hawkins outlasts a 432-entry field to win $31,372 and his record-setting 13th career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #9: $400 No-Limit Hold'em (1 Day) - Blake Whittington triumphs over a 308-entry field to win $23,883 and his fourth career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #10: $1,700 No-Limit Hold'em - Blake Whittington defeats a 466-entry field to earn $151,789 and his fifth career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #11: $250 No-Limit Hold'em Double Stack (1 Day) - Michael Sanders romps over a 287-entry field to win $13,779 and his fourth career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

$135 LADIES No-Limit Hold'em - Morgan Hayes defeats an 83-entry field to win $2,656 and her first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #12: $400 No-Limit Hold'em Double Stack (1 Day) - Chris Lynch tops a 168-entry field to collect $14,969 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

$250 NLHE SENIORS I - Lavern Fross tops a 161-entry field to collect $8,693 and his first career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

Event #13: $40No-Limit Hold'em Double Stack (1 Day) - Eric Rivkin triumphs over a 200-entry field to win $17,161 and his second career Circuit ring. Official Report | Winner's Photo | Results

(All winner's photos -- Image credit: IMPDI Worldwide / twitter: @impdiworld)