WSOP Seniors - No Limit Hold'em Championship Results & Report
42nd World Series of Poker 2011
|WSOP Seniors - No Limit Hold'em Championship|
Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino|
3700 West Flamingo Road
Las Vegas, NV, 89103, US Full Schedule
A Senior Moment
James Hess Wins Seniors World Championship Biggest Seniors Event in History – 3,752 Entrants Shatters Previous Record Set...
Profile: James Hess
Date: June 17, 2011
Game Type: No Limit Hold'em
|9||USA||Leo Whitt AKA "Leon Phelps"||$44,202|
|23||USA||Jack Ernest Ward||$16,715|
|38||Japan||Mitsuhiro Nakao AKA "HIRO"||$10,839|
|50||USA||Paul ""X22"" Magriel||$8,847|
|56||USA||Bruce Van Horn||$7,260|
|63||USA||Robert Whalen AKA "Poto Bob"||$7,260|
|71||Ireland||Michael Nolan AKA "juniorbud"||$6,010|
|78||USA||Larry Ormson AKA "Juice"||$5,031|
|82||USA||Timothy Peters AKA "Timster"||$4,254|
|88||USA||Mike Sica AKA "Little Man"||$4,254|
|109||USA||Edwin St Amour||$3,106|
|115||USA||David Kopp AKA "Wizard"||$3,106|
|120||USA||Rodney Shows AKA "Coach"||$3,106|
|138||USA||Richard Korbin AKA "Pissant"||$3,106|
|154||USA||Lawrence Scholl AKA "Larry"||$2,667|
|165||USA||Dan Alspach AKA "Dan A"||$2,667|
|170||USA||Mike Epstein AKA "Magic"||$2,667|
|189||USA||William Davis AKA "CHEF D"||$2,667|
|204||Netherlands Antilles||Stephen Massa||$2,667|
|206||USA||Darin Ann Parker||$2,667|
|230||UK||Trevor Whiteway AKA "clever trevor"||$2,329|
|241||USA||Kenny Piel AKA "Bad Hat"||$2,329|
|245||USA||Charles Williams AKA "Cannonball"||$2,329|
|263||USA||John Roveto AKA "Junior"||$2,329|
|269||USA||Michael Moore AKA "Big Store"||$2,329|
|272||USA||Dan Kelly AKA "djk123"||$2,059|
|278||USA||William Davis AKA "CHEF D"||$2,059|
|288||Canada||Sherry Ripa AKA "animaux"||$2,059|
|327||USA||Gary L Vick||$2,059|
|348||USA||Michael Woods AKA "White Tiger"||$1,823|
|380||USA||Gerald White AKA "Jerry"||$1,823|
A Senior Moment
James Hess Wins Seniors World Championship
Biggest Seniors Event in History – 3,752 Entrants Shatters Previous Record Set in 2010
Talent Manager Collects WSOP Gold Bracelet and Half-Million Dollar Prize
2011 WSOP Passes Halfway Point
Full House at the 2011 WSOP-- Tournament Attendance Still Up Double Digits Over Last Year
30 Gold Bracelets Won – 28 More Still to Go
OVERVIEWPoker is a natural pastime for all seniors. It may very well be the only competitive game which allows persons 50, 60, 70, or even 80-years and older to compete on an equal playing field with opponents who are in their 20s and 30s.
Where else but a poker table could a 61-year-old grandmother become a “world champion,” as happened a few years ago when Clare Miller won a WSOP gold bracelet?
Where else but a poker table could a crusty 80-year-old Korean War vet outplay and outwit more than a thousand other competitors, which occurred when Paul McKinney won his gold bracelet?
Where else but a poker table can seniors proudly use all the knowledge and experience life has given them, and at the same time -- feel young again?
Well, everyone in the universe who could make it to Las Vegas and post a $1,000 buy-in seems to agree.
This year’s Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship attracted the largest turnout in poker history -- with a whopping 3,752 entries. Incredibly, attendance was up nearly 20 percent over last year's turnout, which was then an all-time record. In fact, the capacity crowd represented the largest single-day start for any live tournament in poker history.
That may take a moment to sink in. So, let’s repeat slowly: The Seniors No-Limit Hold’em Championship was the busiest day in live poker history.
The 2011 champion is James Hess, from Encino, CA. He earned $557,435 in prize money -- the biggest payout ever for what is commonly known as the “Seniors World Poker Championship.” Hess was also presented with his first-ever WSOP gold bracelet, the game's ultimate achievement. This marked Hess' third time to cash at the WSOP.
Predictably, the battle was not easy. What was originally planned as a three-day competition extended into an early morning fourth day, when the action concluded just shy of 4 am. Hess made trip sixes on the final hand of the tournament, topping his final adversary, Richard Harwood -- who showed two pair.
With the conclusion of Event #30, the 2011 WSOP has now crossed the midway point -- both in terms of total days and number of events. So far, several attendance and prize money records have been set at the Rio in Las Vegas.
EVENT #30 CHAMPION – JAMES HESSThe 2011 World Series of Poker $1,000 buy-in Seniors No-Limit Hold’em champion is James Hess, from Encino, CA.
Hess is a 50-year-old talent manager.
Hess is originally from Cambridge, MA.
Hess is a graduate of the University of Southern California.
Hess is married and has two children.
Hess’ first recorded live tournament cash took place in 2010.
Hess’ best previous showing was a second-place finish in a tournament at the Venetian. His best prior WSOP finish was a 32nd-place finish.
Hess has been coming to the WSOP for the past seven years.
For his victory, Hess collected $557,435 for first place.
According to official records, Hess now has 1 win, 1 final table appearance, and 3 in-the-money finishes at the WSOP.
Hess currently has $575,073 in career WSOP winnings.
Hess is to be classified as a professional poker player (in WSOP records and stats), since he plays recreationally and has a full-time job.
THE FINAL TABLEThe official final table was comprised of the top nine finishers.
The final table contained no former gold bracelet winners – which is the sixth finale this year which guaranteed a first-time winner.
Only two nations were represented at the final table – Great Britain (1 player) and the United States (8 players).
The runner up was Richard Harwood, from Granada Hills, CA. He earned a very nice consolation prize amounting to $342,407. Harwood is a television director. He has directed many notable shows, including The Incredible Hulk, Sherif Lobo, Harper Valley PTA, and several Bob Hope Show specials. Harwood has also directed sports programming, including the Olympic Games.
The eighth-place finisher was Walter Browne, from Berkley, CA. During the 1960s and 1970s, he lived in New York and was regarded by many authorities as the second-best chess player in the United States, behind Bobby Fischer (at one time, a world champion grandmaster). He is a six-time U.S. national chess champion.
Final table play began at 9:20 pm on a Sunday evening. Played concluded early Monday morning at 3:45 am.
The final table was played on ESPN’s so-called secondary stage. The new final table set this year is getting raves in terms of design and appearance. No stage in the history of poker has ever looked as spectacular. Viewers will be able to see ESPN’s coverage again once the WSOP Main Event begins in July.
Action was 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 FINISHERSThe top 396 finishers collected prize money.
Among former gold bracelet winners who cashed in this tournament -- aside from those who made the final table – were the following players: Andre Boyer (42), Mike “Little Man” Sica (88), Susie Isaacs (132), Rich Korbin (138), Mike Carson (139), Mike Carson (139), and others.
Paul Magriel, the former world champion backgammon player who is now a tournament circuit regular, finished in 50th place.
Dr. Bruce Van Horn (Ada, OK) finished in 56th place. He is best known as runner up in the 1996 Main Event Championship, won by Huck Seed.
Rene Angelil (Henderson, NV) enjoyed a min-cash in this tournament. He is the husband-manager of international superstar Celine Dion, and an avid poker player.
Tournament results are to be included in all official WSOP records. Results are also to be included in the 2011 WSOP “Player of the Year” race.
ODDS AND ENDSThis was the largest seniors-related poker tournament in history. Attendance shattered the previous record, set at last year’s WSOP. The total number of entries at 3,752 surpassed 3,142 figure by 610 players. This represents a 19 percent increase in attendance, an almost unconscionable turnout given that last year’s attendance was the largest in history by nearly double the old mark.
Moreover, this was the largest single-day start of any live poker tournament in history. Even the previous record setting WSOP Main Event Championships of recent years had four Day Ones, meaning the 3,752 players who began the start of this event constituted the largest live field in one place at any one time in poker history.
WSOP officials called Friday, June 17th the busiest day in poker history. Nearly 6,000 players were processed through the Rio in various WSOP-sanctioned tournaments which began on that day. This is a 24-hour record for any establishment.
The most senior “Senior” in the field was 87-year-old Tony Grand Cantalup (yes, that’s his name). When he was introduced to the huge crowd Grand Cantalup grabbed the microphone and stated, “I’m not sure which is going to last longer in this tournament, me or my chips!”
Three players in the field were 87-years-old. There were four 86-year-olds who played.
This is the 922nd 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 Championship.
The official 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 media.
Hess’ gold bracelet ceremony took place on Monday, June 20th. The national anthem of the USA was played in honor of his victory.
EVENT HISTORYThe Seniors Poker Championship has been successful due in part to the efforts of “Oklahoma” Johnny Hale, who is known as the “Elder Statesman of Poker.” Hale has organized many senior’s poker events over the years. Prior to the start of this year’s Seniors Championship, Hale addressed the large crowd. He conducted the annual “Roll Call,” which provides for a moment of silence and reflection on behalf of many deceased poker greats, such as Benny Binion, Johnny Moss, and others. Hale is also the caretaker of the Seniors Poker Hall of Fame. During a break on the first day of play, all living members of the Seniors Poker Hall of Fame were photographed as a group on the main stage inside the Pavilion.
This year’s tournament awarded the famous “Golden Eagle” trophy, which is engraved with the winner’s name(s). The trophy is a keepsake that is passed forward from champion to champion, similar to the tradition of the Stanley Cup in the National Hockey League.
To be eligible for entry into the Seniors No-Limit Hold’em Championship, the entrant must be age 50 or older -- which means the player had to have been born prior to June 17, 1961.
A tournament similar to the Seniors World Poker Championship was first played in 1993. It was spread at various locations in California and Nevada during the first eight years of its existence. Then, in 2001 an exclusive event for seniors was added to the WSOP schedule. Jay Heimowitz won the first official WSOP Seniors championship gold bracelet.
A woman has won the Seniors Championship just once. That took place in 2006 when Clare Miller was the winner.
The oldest winner was Paul McKinney, who was 80-years-old when he won the Seniors Championship in 2005. McKinney, from West Virginia made a famous quip following his victory. He shared his secret for success by saying, "I like moonshine whisky, big cigars, and young women."
The Seniors event is a No-Limit Hold’em tournament. This has been the game since inception at the WSOP in 2001. The buy-in has always been $1,000.
TOURNAMENT PLAYThe tournament was played over four days. It was originally scheduled to last three days. But the record field side made that impossible.
Day One began with 3,752 entries and ended with 529 survivors.
Day Two began with 529 players and ended with 36 survivors.
Day Three began with 36 players, which played down to the winner.
The tournament officially began on Friday, June 17th at noon. The tournament officially ended early Monday morning, June 20th, at 3:45 am.
NEW STATISTICS (2011 WSOP – HALFWAY POINT)Through the conclusion of Event #29, players from the follow states have combined for the following number of in-the-money finishes. The current state leaderboard reads as follows:
Nevada – 424 cashes
Through the conclusion of Event #29, players who have entered the most WSOP gold bracelet events are as follows:
Tom Dwan – 26
Through the conclusion of Event #29, players who have cashed in the most WSOP gold bracelet events are as follows:
Kirill Rabtsov – 5 cashes
Through the conclusion of Event #29, female players who have cashed in the most WSOP gold bracelet events are as follows:
Melanie Weisner – 4 cashes
MORE 2011 WSOP STATISTICSThrough the conclusion of Event #30, the 2011 WSOP has attracted 37,773 combined total entries. $56,871,510 in prize money has been awarded to winners.
Through the conclusion of this tournament, the breakdown of nationality of gold bracelet winners has been:
United States (20)
Through the conclusion of this tournament, the national origin (birthplace) of winners has been:
United States (15)
Through the conclusion of this event, the home-states of (American) winners have been:
Through the conclusion of this tournament, the breakdown of professional poker players to semi-pros and amateurs who won gold bracelets has been:
Professional Players (24): 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, Mark Radoja, Chris Viox, Dan Idema, Andy Frankenberger, Chris Lee
Semi-Pros (3): Sean R. Drake, Amir Lehavot, Oleksii Kovalchuk
Amateurs (3): Geffrey Klein, Foster Hays, James Hess
Since 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 24 out of 30 events being won by pros.
Through the conclusion of this tournament, the victories of 7 of the 30 winners (23 percent) marked the first time the new champion had ever cashed at the WSOP.
Every 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.
The highest 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).
The highest 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.
New tournament records set at the 2011 WSOP (to date):
• Biggest Heads-Up tournament prize pool in history ($3,040,000) – Event #2
New player records set at the 2011 WSOP (to date):
• The 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).
• Phil 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).
Day 2 of Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship In the Books!
After ten more levels of grueling competition here at the Seniors No-Limit Hold’em Championship, Day 2 saw 529 hopefuls play their way down to the final four tables. During this time our money bubble was burst and 396 seniors found themselves in the money after navigating their way through a record setting field. Following that milestone, the bustouts began occurring at a frantic pace and the familiar call of “payout!” was heard across the Amazon Room.
John Bovin, our chip leader after Day 1, was dispatched during the second day of competition and finished in 65th place. Notable players Paul “X-22” Magriel (50th) and Susie Isaccs (132nd) also made deep runs but ultimately fell short of their goal.
Heading into Day 3, our new chip leader is Craig Koch of Eugene, OR, who built a massive stack of 915,000. Other big stacks to keep an eye on during tomorrow’s final day of play include Bruce Baker (573,000) and Richard “Dick” Harwood (520,000). Jack Ward (488,000) will also be a major story during Day 3, as he looks to make the final table of this event in back to back years.
While the biggest stacks in the field will be drawing most of the attention, short stacks Craig Zotter (91,000) and Gary Braufman (52,000) wanted us to know that they will be players to watch as well.
Check in with PokerPages to follow all of the action, as the remaining players battle for the $557,435 1st place prize and the coveted WSOP gold bracelet.
End of Day 2 Players and Chip Counts
Day One Bagged, Bovin Leads the Field
Today marked a record-setting number of entrants for the Seniors Championship, with exactly 3,752 seniors packing into both the Pavilion and Amazon Room. Similar to last year, the event had such a large player pool that it actually interfered with starting times of other tournaments, including the Event #31: $3,000 Pot-Limit Omaha, which was delayed by a little over an hour.
By the end of the day, we dwindled down to just 529 players. Just a handful of "notables" remain, including Susie Isaacs (26,500), Shirley Williams (10,300) and Paul Magriel (56,100).
Big names who busted early include Amarillo Slim, Dennis Phillips, Lon McEachern, T.J. Cloutier, Berry Johnston, Tony Ma and Charles "Woody" Moore. Harold Angle also busted, which means we will crown a new champion this year.
It appears our current chip leader going into day two is John Bovin, who managed to amass a commanding 113,000 in chips. Other big stacks include Charlie Sewell (74,800) and Rick Mombourquette (66,700).
Back to schedule
Thomas Preston, Jr., better known as Amarillo Slim, was born on December 31, 1928, in Johnson, Arkansas but spend most of his youth in Amarillo, Texas. One of the most famous...