The inaugural World Poker Tour Tampa Main Event played out its days 1A, 1B, and 2 over the weekend. The event was held at the Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa. This is across the Everglades and up the coast from the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood in Davie, which hosted the largest ever WPT field earlier this year.
The Hard Rock Hollywood has the advantage over the Tampa site. Davie is a suburb roughly where the sprawl of Miami meets the sprawl of Fort Lauderdale. There’s a lot of people crammed into that neck of the mangrove swamp.
So, when the Hard Rock Tampa managed only half the larger site’s field, it still meant 1,165 players entered the event. At $3,500 per buy-in, the prize pool came to $3,728,000 once the vig had been raked out. This definitely counts towards Florida’s growing preeminence as a tournament poker destination.
Although not a record for the WPT, the event was a record for the SHR Tampa. The casino’s poker room tweeted about the success.
“Registration closed for the @WPT Tampa Championship and it drew 1,165 entries to create a prize pool worth $3,728,000,” the poker room’s Twitter account posted. “Both are new records for us and we thank everyone for coming out to make our first WPT Championship a huge success.”
State of play
Those 1,165 players were slowly distilled down to 284 over the course of days 1A and 1B. The survivor’s combined on Day 2.
Day 2 saw the field whittled down further. Only 40 players rejoined the field today (Day 3). They will be playing down to the TV final table which will play out tomorrow (Day 4).
The SHR Tampa poker room tweeted: “Day 3 of the @WPT Tampa Championship is set to return at noon on Monday with 40 players remaining, Jonathan Jaffe leading, and $613,225 still awaiting the winner.”
The WPT itself also tweeted that “WPT Champions Zachary Smiley and Jonathan Jaffe are pacing the #WPTTampa field” earlier today.
At the time of writing, the latest chip update still has Jonathan Jaffe — 2014’s WPT Montreal champion — in the lead with 20 players remaining. He has a substantial lead (7,695,000) over his nearest rival Kevin Garosshen (5,205,000).
Jaffe started Day 3 with the chip lead and is still going strong. He is a strong contender to be the first-ever WPT Tampa champion. Which is another kind of record to throw on the pile.
Featured image source: Flickr by WPT