The Moneymaker Tour stop in Houston at the Texas Card House has been very busy with nearly every event surpassing its guarantee to create what has been a successful series.
But a confluence of factors made for a sweat when it came to the Main Event $250,000 guarantee, which became the focus over the course of the Day 1 flights. With a $1,500 buy in, the target number to hit the guarantee was 186 entries.
Challenges to hit guarantee
The first obstacle was being in a completely new region of the country for the tour. Houston had been an untapped market and it was not clear how the tour would take to virgin soil.
Another obstacle came when the series was in progress. Mother nature decided to play a role as Houston turned unusually cold in the middle of the week, forcing a day of cancelled events due to frozen roads. The series rebounded well from this disruption in subsequent days.
One of the other obstacles to the Moneymaker Main Event was the poker competition around the country, with multiple big events happening in places like the Borgata and WSOP Circuit in Tunica (both covered by PokerOrg), as well as locally with other Houston card rooms holding their own big events on a busy January weekend.
The main Event was scheduled to have six starting flights, but a slow Thursday attracted just 24 entries to Flight A and Flight B was not held on Thursday. Friday continued with fairly modest numbers, as the two days became the quietest of the series so far.
Main hits guarantee
Despite this, Tony Burns (Executive Manager of the Moneymaker Tour) remained unwavering that the guarantee would be reached with a larger Saturday. And, sure enough, he grabbed the mic late on Saturday night in the final flight to proudly announce that the guarantee had been hit with over two hours to spare.
Now the focus shifts to the poker itself as the entries continue to pour in and set up what will be a very compelling Day 2.
Keep an eye out for a full Day 1 recap article to come, with information on total numbers and who will be advancing on to Day 2 with chips.