Mario Lopez has won his second Latin American Poker Tour Main Event after defeating Oscar Quijada in heads-up action at the Conrad Punta del Estate Resort & Casino in Punta del Este, Uruguay.
Mario Lopez is on a poker high carrying a danger of getting his wings burnt by the sun.The Argentinian professional is grabbing the headlines once again. This time he has topped a field of 267 players to win the Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) Main Event at the Conrad Punta del Estate Resort & Casino in Punta del Este, Uruguay.
It’s the second time Lopez has won a LAPT Main Event title. The first coming in Season 7 when he defeated 609 players on his way to a $117,991 score at the Vina Del Mar Casino in Peru.
Lopez has now earned $1.6m in live tournament earnings, with $1.1m arriving on the back of a kite bearing the stamp 2015. This man is a firestarter. In the summer he was runner-up to Paul Hoefer at the World Series of Poker’s (WSOP) Little One for One Drop, earning $399,455, and he topped that a few months later when he won the Estrellas Main Event at the European Poker Tour (EPT) Barcelona festival for $451,107.
According to the Global Poker Index (GPI) rankings, Lopez is ranked #11 in Latin America, #4 in the Latin America Player of the Year race, #6 in Argentina, #2 in the Argentinian Player of the Year race, and carries a world ranking of #126.
Lopez manipulated the field in a myriad of ways to earn the Day 2 chip lead. He would lose it late into Day 3 after Chadi Moustapha – runner-up to Claudio Moya at LAPT8 Peru – picked up the baton and ran with it. Moustapha would start the final table with that chip lead, but would bow out in fourth place after running pocket sixes into the pocket jacks of the eventual runner up Oscar Quijada.
Six of the final eight players were of Argentinian descent. Lopez was one of two players searching for his second LAPT title. The Chilean Patricio Rojas won the Main Event in Peru back in Season 6 for $123,840. His valiant attempt would end in sixth spot after having his AK savaged by the pocket aces of Ariel Eghi.
267 players created a prize pool of $776,970 in the fifth stop of Season 8. In the end, the battle for the trophy would come down to two men – one full of experience, and the other not so. Lopez started with the chip lead, it passed momentarily to Quijada, before Lopez snatched it back. Then this happened:
Quijada raised to 300,000, Lopez three-bet to 600,000, Quijada moved all-in, and Lopez called. It was pocket jacks for Lopez and pocket sixes for Quijada. You can use your imagination to figure out what happened five cards later.
Lopez joins the following cast of LAPT8 victors:
• Oscar Alache won in Chile – $131,962
• Josh Kay won the Bahamas event at the PCA – $367,928
• Shakeed Kazemipur won in Panama – $180,112
• Claudio Moya won in Peru – $135,876
Final Table Results
1st. Mario Lopez – $155,730
2nd. Hilario Quijada – $103,580
3rd. German Christiansen – $75,760
4th. Chadi Moustapha – $61,140
5th. Ariel Eghi – $47,940
6th. Patricio Rojas – $36,280
7th. Jorge Alberto Cantos – $26,660
8th. Ruben Barros – $19,580
The next stop on the LAPT8 will be the Grand Final in Sao Paulo, Brazil: Nov 25-29.