A race to the finish, a huge field, not all of whom making it to the end. The same regular characters, dressed in bright colours, with some oddballs and a load of eccentrics thrown in for a race to the money. Yes, today the EPT went Wacky Races, and there wasn’t a moment to lose.
Around 400 players lined up at the start line for today’s seven levels, but only 112 would make it to the finish line. The rest now lay scattered in various states of repair; some with steam coming from beneath their hoodies, other with egos scraped, all of them leaving empty handed.
The last of these would be Koen De Visscher, the bubble boy for EPT Barcelona, who conked out within sight of the finish when Andre Bucica despatched him with some well-aimed aces over queens.
Bubble boy Koen de Visscher
In the sixties cartoon it was usually the bad guy Dick Dastardly and his dog Muttley causing all the havoc, but on Day 2 in Barcelona it was Bryn Kenney (Sergeant Blast for the purposes of this report). Kenney, a PokerStars qualifier who bags up 693,500 tonight, was the purple-powered rocket man today, dodging all that the opposition threw at him to reach today’s finish line ahead of the rest.
Chip leader Bryn Kenney
Where did that leave everyone else? While it would be beyond the polite limitations of the PokerStars Blog to name a Dick Dastardly, let alone a Muttley, the pursuing cast should make for an entertaining re-run when Day 2 starts tomorrow.
Roman Makhlin finished second on 643,000, while Giuesseppe Pantaleo bagged up 622,500, his highlight clash coming against French woman Marion Nedellec.
Nedellec (Penelope Pit-Stop) took chips from Pantaleo (let’s call him the Hooded Claw) numerous times before Pantaleo finally sent her to the pits with a well-timed, and successful, flush draw.
Unable to assist were the Ant Hill Mob, a veritable troop of young and not so young, who make the modern game what it is. The likes of Dominic Nitsche (535,000), Mathias De Meulder (280,500), Haykel Vidal (534,000), Luis Rufas (502,000), Ruben Visser (116,500), Leo Margets (174,000) and Roberto “Ring-A-Ding” Romanello (372,500) will fire up the Bulletproof Bomb once more at noon tomorrow.
Kristoffer Thorson (Perfect Peter) was at times untouchable, battling against Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier and Nicolas Chouity for much of the day with ease. All the while his fellow Team Pro Alex Gomes (Red Max in his leapfrogging Haybailer), went down to 6,000, then up to 100,000, then down again to a closing stack of 93,000.
Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier
The part of Lazy Luke was played perfectly by Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez. The Argentinian, having overslept this morning, arrived half an hour late today and promptly lost 90,000 of his starting 164,000 within minutes. With his mother watching him intently as he plugged away on the TV table, Fernandez was able to fire up his Chuggabug stack, and run up a final Day 2 score of 186,500 chips.
So Kenney won the day today. Tomorrow he, and the remaining 112 players who made the money, will do it all again. The list of those who won’t is long and distinguished; including the likes of Andre Akkari, Jude Ainsworth, Max Lykov, Liv Boeree, Marcel Luske and Johnny Lodden, all of whom will have to wait until EPT Prague for their next champion’s trophy. Perhaps they can catch a pidgeon instead.
If following all that hasn’t left you exhausted then you can read up on all of today’s coverage use the links below, while the full overnight scores are available on our chip count page.
As always our thanks to our foreign bloggers with whom we converse in GCSE/High School Diploma level gibberish only when absolutely necessary. You can read their work in German, Swedish, Dutch, Italian and Greek. Our thanks also to photographer Neil Stoddart; brought to you by a copyright infringement legal team so powerful it hums.
The sheer joy of surviving the bubble
Thanks for reading the coverage today. We’ll be back before noon tomorrow for Day 3 when 112 players will become 27. And if you’re too young to understand what the hell this Wacky Races rubbish was all about, youtube is your friend.
Until tomorrow, it’s goodnight from Barcelona