European Poker Tour (EPT) San Remo champion, Ludovic Lacay, is the man that everyone is trying to catch as the World Poker Tour (WPT) Venice Grand Prix leaps into its third day of action.
If you happen to be visiting one of the romantic cities in the world, then why not pop into the Casino Di Venezia and check out the action at the WPT Venice Grand Prix. The casino that is so old it is rumored that Jesus himself once owned the Baccarat tables, has delivered a great tournament that has seen 173-players create a prize pool of $647,571.
The man who emerged from the Day Two pack with more chips than anyone else was Ludovic Lacay. The Frenchman with close to $3 million in live tournament earnings stole the show from the second level of the day and never took his foot off the accelerator. When the Day Three action starts, Lacay will be searching for his third WPT final table after previous third and second place spots in Barcelona and Marrakech respectively.
Another performance of note came from the heads-up cash specialist Lauri Pesonen. The Finnish pro had the unfortunate task of being seated to the immediate right of Lacay for the entire five levels of play during Day Two. Yet despite the constant barrage from his left, Pesonen ended the day second in chips with 287,300. Pesonen, who doesn’t normally play live tournaments because they are, ‘boring,’ is currently on a mini-heater with a 14th place finish at WPT Baden followed by a 34th place finish at the EPT London Main Event where he also snagged a side event for $60,283.
The WPT itself is also well represented in the final 36-players after Mike Sexton finished the day in seventh place with 241,500 chips. The man with more experience than the other 35-players combined is a great bet to make that final table, meaning the WPT had better find a replacement commentator, and quick. As Day Two came to a close Sexton found himself seated to the direct left of the Day 1A chip leader Steve Behm, who was locked in a war of attrition with the World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet holder Rocco Palumbo.
How about this for a crazy hand:
Rocco Palumbo opened from the hijack and Steve Behm flatted on the button. The flop came down [Kh] [Jd] [9h] and Palumbo fired out a c-bet for 5,500. Action onto Behm and he moved all-in for 150,000. Palumbo was not going to be shoved around, but he picked the wrong time to stand his ground. The Italian calling with top two pair, Behm turned over the straight and after winning the pot promptly handed the dealer €100 as a tip. It’s a nice life if you can find it.
The WPT Season XI Player of the Year (POY) race is also growing interesting with two of the top five players still in the 36-player mix at Venice. TV producer, and writer, Matt Salsburg has had a great season with a win at the WPT Grand Prix de Paris followed up by two more Stateside WPT Final Tables. Salsburg, who hasn’t had a stack of note throughout this entire tournament, sits in second place on the POY leader board behind Paul Volpe who is not in action today. Sitting in fourth place is ‘Mad’ Marvin Rettenmaier. The German won the WPT Cyprus Merit Classic before adding a fifth place finish at WPT Baden to his impressive Hendon Mob results.
Both players are in action with 36-players remaining.