The World Poker Tour has stunned the poker community by announcing the largest guaranteed prize pool in live tournament poker history. $40 million will be on offer for the WPT World Championship. It is a $10,400 entry event slated to be played at Wynn Las Vegas between December 12-21, 2023.
World Poker Tour set the current bar high when underwriting the 2022 WPT World Championship for $15 million. Won by Canada’s Eliot Hudon, 2,960 entrants generated a $29,008,000 prize pool, of which the winner claimed $4.13 million.
Record figures for the 2023 World Series of Poker Main Event – 10,043 entries created a $93.3 million prize pool – appear to have encouraged WPT officials. But, needing 4,082 entrants to generate $40 million, this year’s WPT World Championship will need 32 percent more entries than its predecessor.
A Sight for Sore Eyes
“The WPT World Championship at Wynn Las Vegas is poised to reach new heights, and we wanted to match that expectation with a guarantee that no live poker tournament has ever seen before,” said Adam Pliska, the WPT CEO, when announcing details of the 2023 event.
Ryan Beauregard, Executive Director of Poker Operations at Wynn Las Vegas, added, “The astonishing support and excitement we’ve seen from the poker community after just one year is nothing like I’ve seen before. We look forward to the 2023 WPT World Championship and hosting another industry-leading event with an unparalleled player experience.”
Along with the record-breaking $40 million guarantee marquee event, the full WPT World Championship festival schedule has also been released. It features a wide array of more than 30 supporting events for poker players of all levels. The best online poker sites will run online satellites for many events.
Big Selection and Big Money
The festival starts with a $1 million guaranteed, $600 No Limit Hold’em multi-flight tournament on November 29. Other player favorites will follow, including a $250,000 guaranteed WPT Ladies World Championship, a $2 million guaranteed Mystery Bounty, a $1,100 Seniors Championship, and a $10,000 Seniors High Roller.
Multiple mixed game tournaments are also available throughout the festival, ranging from the $1,100 HORSE Championship to a brand-new addition to the schedule, a $3,000 Dealer’s Choice Championship.
Numerically, the 2023 WPT Prime Championship is likely to attract the biggest field. Last year, Stephen Song overcame 5,429 rival entries to claim the winner’s share of a $5,267,100 prize pool. The $1,100 entry WPT Prime Championship boasts a $5 million guarantee this year. It will run between December 7-12, with a televised final table on December 19.
There is no shortage of high-stakes tournament poker in the WPT’s showpiece festival schedule. Its $1 million buy-in ‘Big One for One Drop’ will run between December 18-20. A $25,700 High Roller is set for December 17-18, followed by a WPT Alpha8 – a $50,000 buy-in tournament – between December 20-21.
Star Quality NAPT a Week Ahead of Vegas F1
Beforehand, PokerStars is gearing up for the return of its North American Poker Tour. Absent for 12 years, the online poker site has announced Las Vegas’ Resorts World will be its first stop-off point. Action will take place between November 4-12.
The North American Poker Tour’s Las Vegas main event, a $1,650 buy-in Hold’em tournament with six starting flights, will begin on November 6. Additional events include the $550 PokerStars Cup – running between November 9-12 – and a $5,300 High Roller event (November 10-12).
One week later, Formula 1 cars will be thundering around the Las Vegas streets in the inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix. To celebrate its ongoing partnership with Oracle Red Bull Racing, PokerStars is offering players in Michigan, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania the chance to win their way to Vegas for the most talked-about race on the 2023 F1 calendar.
Via an online sweepstake, three lucky winners – one from each state – will receive a once-in-a-lifetime fan experience that includes flights and a five-night stay at Paris Las Vegas. Each of the three prizes is valued at $35,000.
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