This post is serialized and I’ve already posted the next parts. Just a cheap trick to try and get you to come back tomorrow really
In case I didn’t mention it yet, I’m going to Vegas in the summer and whilst there I will play in at least one WSOP event. Whilst Claire was on a mission to get into the Main Event (and yay! she did it!) I’ve only had a few goes so far and haven’t done particularly well. I’ll still have a few cracks at this, probably on PokerStars or Full Tilt, who are running satellites on the weekend before the event with 150 and 100 guaranteed seats respectively.
I also wanted to try and justify to myself playing a satellite in Vegas. These come in two flavours – $225 with $200 rebuys (1 seat for every 50 buy-ins) or a $1060 freezeout (1 seat for every 10 players). Strangely, I’m much more comfortable with the idea of the freezeout than the cheaper rebuy. It’s not a bad structure and a one-in-ten chance of getting through seems achievable if the wind is blowing in the right direction. Plus, so close to the main event, these games are going to be buzzing, and if I can’t make it this ill still be a great experience.
I wanted to win entry to WSOP Event 37 – $1500 No Limit Hold’em, which begins 2 days after we arrive in Vegas and is the last Hold’em event before the big one. It’s not a brilliant tournament with just 1500 starting chips, but a slower structure than the $540 and $225 second chance tournaments that take place every night which I’d also looked at as alternatives, just so I could get a piece of WSOP action. This one also has the added bonus of being an actual bracelet event!
There are a couple of ways to qualfiy directly for the preliminary events – Bodog and Pokershare both have satellites, but they’re at silly times. You can also use PokerStars FPPs to buy in, but I would need to go flat out, and I’m still getting killed in their limit games (you don’t earn points half as fast playing no-limit) so that’s not an attractive option.
So I decided to just pick some tournaments and go for the cash to make my entry fees.
First blood was last Monday 22nd May – I played a $20+$2 shootout on Party Poker, which if you’ve not seen these is quite a strange format. Each round is a single table tournament with the top three winning money and progressing to the next round. The game ends as soon as there are three players remaining, with the highest chip count taking first place, which coupled with the fact that you take your chip count to the next table means you can’t just sneak through.
I finished 1st in round one for $44.31, second in round two for $47.06, second in round three for $90.36 and 3rd in round four for $201.06. Total profit on the night was $360.79 – not a bad start at all. The eventual winner was super-aggressive and that strategy worked for him. I actually lost with 99 against his 96 offsuit. What can you do?
I do like this format, and the strategy to not only survive but win enough chips to be able to survive in later rounds is an interesting one. I’ve played a couple more since – getting money from rounds 2 and 3 respectively. I’ll win it one day
Total profit (so far!) from Party Poker shootouts: $411.30