The big money European Poker Tour players finally have an award to call their own. The EPT announced this morning that it will present a “High Roller of the Year” award at the end of Season 9. The honor will go to the EPT player who racks up the most EPT Awards points in events with a buy in of 10,000 (€ / $ / £) or more.
Season 9 of the EPT is set to feature more high roller events than any in its history. In all, there will be 16 events that qualify for the High Roller of the Year award. Those will include there Super High Rollers, two 25,000 events, and 10,000 re-load tourneys on every EPT stop. Finally, this year the EPT is introducing a series of 10,000 championship tournaments.
“High Stakes poker action is as exciting as any sport in the world,” said Edgar Stuchly, President of EPT. “These high stakes tournaments provide high-drama, deep strategy and potentially life-changing rewards.”
If you’re wondering what inspired an award available to such a select group of players, you need to look no further than big-money specialist Philipp Gruissem. Last season on the EPT, Gruissen won two events, made five final tables, and banked more than €1.4 million. That kind of performance may never be repeated, but whoever gets closest will take down a coveted EPT Award at the end of Season 9.
In less than two weeks, the top pros will have a chance to earn their first points for this award. EPT Barcelona will host a €50,000 Super High Roller event beginning August 17 to kick off Season 9. It’s part of an eleven-day poker festival that will feature four high roller tourneys. Tournament organizers expect the prize pool in the €50,000 to crest the €1.8 million mark.
Among the 37 people already confirmed to play are Team Pros Betrand “ElkY” Grospellier and Daniel Negreanu, both of whom had very good years in the big buy-in events last year.
“I’ve had great success in high roller events and this season there will be an award for High Roller player of the year,” Negreanu said. “I’ll be shooting for that.”
Heres a quick list of the other confirmed players.
Even if you can’t make it to Barcelona to watch this event play out, you will be able to see the final table near live (in fact, on a one-hour delay) Sunday August 19 at 13:00 CET.
And if you’d like to get closer to the action, the PokerStars Blog will have full coverage of all the big tourneys in Barcelona beginning with the €50,000 Super High Roller. Keep it here for the best in live reporting, interviews, photography, and features.