Day 1a of the European Poker Tour Barcelona main event saw 263 players ante up the €5,300 buy-in, but only 137 survived the day. Day 1b saw an additional 495 players buy-in (and 262 survive), bringing the total starting field to 758 — a big bump over 2009’s total of 468. The crowded field creates a total prize pool of €3.79m, from which the ultimate champ will get €825k.
Day 1b saw Spanish homeboy Luis Rufas as chip leader with 232k, followed by Zachary Zorik (one of the few Yanks to make the trip during Thanksgiving week) in second with 183k. Despite his triple-crown motivation, Daniel Negreanu will not be one of the 399 players moving on to Day 2 action. Neither will EPT London winner David Vamplew, Thor Hansen and Nacho Barbero, among other prominent casualties.
In other tourney news, Harrison Gimbel bested a 289-strong field to win the inaugural WPT Regional Series Fall Poker Open at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida. Gimbel, who won $2.2m in January for bagging the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, picks up a substantially smaller, yet entirely respectable $330k for winning in Florida. For the record, Gimbel’s 20 years old. Because we really need some way to feel superior to Gimbel right this second, we remind everyone that there’s all sorts of bars that still won’t let him through the door … Nope, our old, broke asses still feel inferior.