Borgata Winter Poker Open Update

The beautiful Borgata Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey has played host to several elite poker tournaments, but this year marks the first that its popular Winter Poker Open is not an official WPT stop. That didn’t deter the event’s organizers from offering up ample cash incentives, namely a $2 million guaranteed prize pool for the championship event. The gamble paid off too, because the 2011 Borgata Winter Open kicked off in epic style with the tournament’s best numbers to date.

A whopping 1,472 players entered the first event, the $500 NL Hold’em Deep Stack, on Wednesday. As a result, the event also offered the best payouts for a Borgata opening event – a total of $736,000 altogether. The final table was decided at 3am this morning, and now we can officially report the results of Event #1. The top nine finished as follows: 

  1. Alexander Rocha – $150,850
  2. Joshua Lawson – $94,236
  3. Seungwan Lee – $57,113
  4. Leonardo Palermo – $47,832
  5. Ryan Wood – $39,265
  6. Alex Bolotin – $31,768
  7. Brian Mooney – $25,343
  8. Robert Hanley – $19,275
  9. Shawn James – $13,207

If you’ve been wondering why some of the most notable American pros have yet to make an appearance at the Aussie Millions in Melbourne, then it’s likely because they’ve been hanging out at the Borgata this week. The tournament will run from January 19 – February 4 with 26 events.

The Borgata Winter Poker Open Championship Event has a $3300 + $200 buy-in, and judging by the numbers the tournament has been posting this year, it should draw significantly more than last year’s field of 766 players. It doesn’t start until January 30, though, so poker fans won’t have to worry about splitting their attention between the Borgata Winter Open and the Aussie Millions Main Event which starts this Sunday and finishes on January 29.

Speaking of the Aussie Millions, we can now report a few more event winners. British player Richard Ashby took the title plus an AUD $23,800 check for his win in Event #5: 8-Game Mixed Event. The next day belonged to Tim O’Shea who pocketed AUD $81,370 for winning Event #6: No Limit Hold’em 6-Handed. Today we started getting into the big money, so it’s no surprise that the Full Tilt $25,000 Shootout Invitational went to a big name. U.S. pro David Oppenheim pulled through for a first place finish worth AUD $250,000.

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