A 24-year-old student from the University of London has taken down the PokerStars MEGASTACK London event and with it a Platinum Pass, and BetStars and PokerStars partner in Big Race.
Whenever I hear the number 300, I think of the Spartans. Blood. Guts. Phalanx. War. I don’t know if the Battle of Thermopylae was on the mind of the PokerStars team when they created the $25k buy-in Player’s No-Limit Hold’em Championship, but it’s on mine.
At the time of writing, 35 players of all shapes and sizes, have experienced war to win a $30,000 Platinum Pass giving them a seat in the biggest event of 2019 outside of the World Series of Poker (WSOP).
The latest is a 24-year-old student from University College London called Peter Brankin, and it’s people like the young man studying a Masters in Social Cognition that PokerStars created the idea of the Platinum Pass.
Brankin waded through a field of 751 entrants to make the final table of the £150 buy-in PokerStars MEGASTACK London. The final six players agreed on an ICM split, leaving the pass to play for, and Brankin took it down. The £9,750 purse was his most significant to date. His previous best was a runner-up finish in the 2015 UK Students Poker Championship for £5,000.
Brankin learned to play the game in a 25p/50p cash game over at Harry Lodge’s house. Lodge finished fifth in the PokerStars Championship in Prague back in December.
PokerStars and BetStars Cross Pollinate in The Big Race
In general, PokerStars prefer to separate their marketing efforts when it comes to poker, sports betting and casino, but for the second successive year, they have made an exception for the Big Race.
It’s a move that will bug the hell out of the poker purists, but sports betting poker players will love it. On Sunday, March 4 at 18:00 (BST) PokerStars are organising a $2 buy-in poker event called The Big Race.
In addition to the regular payouts, PokerStars are giving away a broad array of BetStars prizes to the top 110 finishers in the hope that they can migrate some poker players to their sportsbook. There is also the opportunity for one player to win a $3,000 package to the PokerStars Festival Marbella.
In a brilliant twist, the top finishing players in the Big Race will be allocated a horse at random that’s due to compete in the Cheltenham Gold Cup on March 16. The owner of the winning horse takes down a $3k PokerStars Festival package. Second place gets $500 worth of BetStars bets. Third place gets $250 worth of BetStars bets.
The number of qualifiers depends on the number of runners in the Gold Cup. If your horse is a non-runner, you win a $5 free bet.