LAPT6 Colombia: Tournament of champions

June 06, 2013

In the five-plus seasons of its existence, the LAPT has produced 25 individual champions through 26 events. The difference between events and champions is accounted by Team PokerStars Pro Jose “Nacho” Barbero, who won back-to-back events in Season 3.

Four out of the 25 are playing in the field today.

The post has to start with Irish player Robbie Renehan, who won this event last year. Yesterday I wrote that I would be very surprised if Renehan turned up today, given the distance between Colombia and Ireland. Since his back win last August, Renehan has two tournament cashes: a modest cash in a WPT re-entry event in Atlantic City, and a 4th place in a small EPT turbo side event, suggesting that he travels infrequently and isn’t a circuit regular. Surely such a player would not be back this year.

Renehan proved me wrong.

“I won one of the last satellites on PokerStars so I decided to come,” he said. When I told him how surprised I was to see him, he added, “After last year, I had to come back. Plus the weather here is a nice change from the weather in Ireland.”

Current Dublin weather: 17C, 70% humidity. Current Medellin weather: 26C, 35% humidity. His story checks out.

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Renehan likes it here in the City of Eternal Spring

Further on in the room, you’ll find LAPT4 Colombia champion Julian Menendez. He’s on at least his second bullet in this event after playing yesterday. You’ll also find Barbero, who is also on his second bullet today after playing only two hands on the first bullet.

Last but certainly not least is LAPT6 Brazil champion Victor Sbrissa. Sbrissa had quite a final table in São Paulo in late April. In particular, his heads-up play against Daniel Murta seemed inspired, egged on as he was by a lively crowd of supporters that included his father.

Sbrissa, buoyed by his $252,000 win in São Paulo, headed over to Monaco for the EPT Grand Final a week later. He managed a second-tier cash of €18,500 in the €10,000 Main Event before making the final table of the €25,000 High Roller and earning an additional €116,000. All told his trip to Monaco netted Sbrissa about €100,000 to go with the $252,000 he won the week before.

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Sbrissa

The top prize here in Medellin will probably be right around $100,000, less than Sbrissa earned in either São Paulo or in Monaco. Somehow I doubt Sbrissa would complain if he won it, however. Every poker player could always use an extra $100,000, and in Sbrissa’s case a win would allow him to join Barbero as the only two-time winners in the history of the LAPT.

Dave Behr is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.

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