The recent World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOPC) attracted 1,026 participants who formed a $1,552,338 prize pool. It featured three starting flights and exceeded its initial $1 million guarantee. But, only the top 120 entrants won money, the least payout being a $2,546 score.
Harvey Castro defied the odds when he defeated all his opponents to win his first WSOPC gold ring and $275,660 on July 31 in Durant, Oklahoma. The Flower Mound resident was among the youngest entrants in the event. Yet, he is a collegiate soccer player for Southern Methodist University.
Castro stated after the tournament that he met expectations after being calm throughout. He didn't rush to move his cards in all the hands. The poker pro loves engaging in competitive events and doesn't shy away from making huge buy-ins.
The winner didn't instantly believe he had received the first-place prize and ring. But he promised his fans he would enroll in more tournaments in the future.
Each player that reached the tournament's money bracket returned to Day 2. They battled it out for several hours until only 12 players were left in the tournament, David "The Dragon Pham being the stack leader. Some of the players with amazing runs but missed a seat at the final table were Kami Hudson, Roger Franco, Craig Varnell, Will Berry, and Danny Marx.
The Tournament's Top Payouts and Points
- Harvey Castro-$27660 and 960 Card Player Player of the Year (POY) points
- Christopher Staats-$174,980 and 800 POY points
- David Pham-$130,024 and 640 POY points
- Todd Tucker-$97,797 and 480 POY points
- Arthur Morris-$74,466 and 400 POY points
- Gary Bauer-$57,374 and 320 POY points
- Andrew Watson-$44,723 and 240 POY points
- Eric Bunch-$35,254 and 160 POY points
- Srinivasa Vadlamudi-$28,097 and 80 POY points
What Transpired at the Table?
Pham was the chip leader when the remaining finalists set a nine-handed final table, while Castro was the third player on the chip standings. The latter won a 5 million chips-pot that earned him the top position after several minutes.
Yet, it took him a while to knock out his first opponent at the table. Castro busted Arthur Morris in the fifth position while trying to regain the stack lead.
The former eliminated another player after the dinner break. He ended Todd Tucker's run in fourth place and extended his great form as he busted Pham in the third position.
Castro had a 5:1 chip lead over Chris Staats when their battle of the blinds began. The former kept the latter on his toes by making several jams.
Staats didn't lose focus and got a perfect spot to leverage the chips. Castro used JHeart Suit5Heart Suit to go all in in the event's last hand, and Staats used 9Diamond Suit8Diamond Suit to call his remaining chips.
Unfortunately, the board ran out KSpade Suit3Heart Suit2Diamond Suit7Spade SuitQHeart Suit and sent Staats packing as a runner-up with $174,980. Harrah's Cherokee in North Carolina will host the upcoming WSOP Circuit tournament between August 3 and 14.