Monday, February 24, 2014

Travel Report: Season XII WPT Fallsview Poker Classic, Day 2 -- Roll Up the Rim to Win

In a bit of a rush (as usual) this morning as I get my act together for one more long day of tourney reporting. Yesterday’s second day of play here in Niagara Falls at the WPT Fallsview Poker Classic went well as 114 survivors from a starting field of 383 played down to just 10. That group will reassemble at noon today at an unofficial ten-handed final table, then play down to a winner tonight.

There were a few better known players left as the night edged towards the finish -- e.g., Mike Leah, Mike Watson, Peter Jetten, Shawn Cunix -- but all fell shy of the final ten and so the winner here will be a relative newcomer, although a few have had some nice scores before.

Matthew Lapossie final tabled the EPT6 Barcelona event back in 2009. Josue Sauvageau finished fifth in this same event a year ago. Dylan Wilkerson has 15 WSOP cashes and over $340,000 in career tourney winnings. And Jason James, who has a big chip lead to start the day, also has a number of cashes at the WSOP and elsewhere, although this should mark his biggest to date.

The day began with an enjoyable breakfast meeting with a family friend who happens to be based here in Niagara. Always nice to be able to connect with folks on these trips, and we enjoyed a nice visit before I headed to the tourney room.

I’d already had a couple of cups of coffee before breakfast, drank more there, then during the late afternoon Chris Tessaro introduced me to Tim Hortons coffee, in particular the popular “Roll Up the Rim to Win” promotion which encourages people to buy still more cups of the popular brand.

Chris bought me a cup -- and a chance at cash prizes or even a new car -- while also filling me in on the history behind the franchise first co-founded by the late NHL star after who it is named. The coffee was good (even if I didn’t exactly need yet another shot of caffeine) and while I didn’t win any prizes I did feel connected for a moment with the many other Canadians rolling up the rims of their coffee cups every day.

Speaking of hockey, there was a positive vibe in the room for much of the day as people shared stories about Canada’s gold medal victory in the morning, with the match being replayed on CBC on television screens in the afternoon. Big deal, that.

Must sign off as I have much left to do before play kicks off at noon. Join Remko Rinkema and myself for the hand-for-hand coverage over on the WPT site today. As Remko would say, it should be a barnburner.

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