Brian Rast wins bracelet #5 in 2021 WSOP Event #51

Jon Pill
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Posted on October 29, 2021 5:41 pm EDT

Fear is the Mind Killer read Brian Rast’s hoodie as he took down 2021 WSOP Event #51: $3,000 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em. The line is from Paul Atreides in the novel Dune.

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration,” thinks Paul to himself in the book. “I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.”

Poker is a game more suited to a Mentat’s skill set than to Muad’Dib’s. But the line is still not bad advice for gamblers everywhere. Especially, at a final table where there are hundreds of thousands of dollars between pay jumps, and holding one’s nerve is vital.

This latest bracelet is Brian Rast’s 5th, leaving behind a slot among the four-braceleteers which was almost immediately filled. Just a few hours later Farzad Bonyadi won his 4th bracelet in the $10k 2-7 Single Draw event.

Rast had to outlast 997 other chip stacks for his cut of the $2,661,990 prize pool.

The chips must flow

The money probably means less to Rast than the bracelet. He already has over $22 million in live tournament cashes alone (more profit than prophet, it would seem). Though above the gold, both metaphorical and literal, the thing that spiced up this final table for him was — he claimed — the competition.

“Things have been changing in my life,” Rast explained to the press. “Since COVID, it’s the least I’ve played poker since I started. So coming back to this WSOP I really haven’t played much for almost a year and a half. This was a challenge. This WSOP is more like playing for the competitive spirit of it. […] The thing that really got me fired up about this is the competitiveness of doing it.”

Rast also had one eye on his legacy. With the Poker Hall of Fame nominations out he was thinking about his place in the poker pantheon.

“I turn 40 in a couple weeks and it was on my mind to make the Poker Hall of Fame,” he said. “I think I have a pretty good claim. […] I wanted to come back here this year to the WSOP and show myself that I can still play great poker.”

Rast beat John Gallaher heads up for the $474,102 first-place prize. Gallaher won $293,009 for second place.

Event #51: $3,000 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em complete final table results

PositionPlayer NamePayout
1stBrian Rast$474,102
2ndJohn Gallaher$293,009
3rdTuan Phan$210,913
4thNick Yunis$141,478
5thJun Obara$100,827
6thFrancisco Benitez$73,107

Featured image source: PokerGO (Photographer credit: Antonio Abrego)