We were making our way through the Day 1a field a little earlier, spotting several familiar faces from LAPTs past.
There was Patricio Rojas, Nicolas Fierro, Damian Salas, Leo Fernandez, Joaquin Melogno, Bruno Kawauti, and Damian Salas, as expected. Also among the familiar faces taking seats for today’s first Day 1 flight are Team PokerStars Pros Nacho Barbero, Christian de León, and Angel Guillen.
But wait… there was someone we haven’t seen sitting at an LAPT table before. Although we have seen her at LAPTs many times.
Why it’s Lynn Gilmartin, sitting just one table away from her boyfriend Angel Guilen to start today’s first day of play.
Indeed some of us have even been interviewed by her at LAPT events, answering her questions about “Nightly Notables” and other tourney-related goings-on. It was hard to resist the opportunity, then, to ask her a few during the day’s first break, the first being why she chose this week and Viña del Mar for her debut as a player in an LAPT Main Event.
“This is my first main event, really,” explained Lynn, who has played here and there before and collected a few cashes, but as a presenter for PokerNews, PokerStars, and now for the World Poker Tour, she’s understandably been otherwise occupied at poker tourneys during the last several years.
“I was just coming to spend time with Angel, and he said ‘Well, why don’t you play?’ And so here I am!”
A happy bit of scheduling helped provide the chance for Lynn’s coming to Chile.
“My schedule with the WPT has been pretty intense and I haven’t had much down time, and mine and Angel’s tours aren’t that well aligned. But this week provided an opportunity and I jumped at it. I thought… why not? I’ll advantage of finally having some available time to get at the tables.”
Despite having been to LAPT stops in the past as a presenter, this in fact marks Lynn’s first time coming to Chile.
“I actually just tweeted yesterday how this was my idea of the perfect paradise because it combines two of my favorite things — wine and the ocean,” she said. “Driving through the Chilean wine region from Santiago was amazing, and then getting to the coast and this place… it’s beautiful.”
As mentioned, the seating draw put Lynn a table away from Angel who after a couple of levels sits a little below the average.
We’ve spotted the latter occasionally looking over and nodding with a non-verbal “How’s it going?” The nods back have communicated it has been so far so good for Lynn who sits with just a little more than the starting stack to begin Level 3.
So what happens when the redraw comes and perhaps the pair get seated a little closer to one another… say at the same table?
“I actually feel like I can read him more than anyone,” said Lynn with a laugh. “He might be a good bluffer at the table, but he’s definitely not in real life. I might have an advantage.”
We let the pair go to use what was left of the break to compare notes. However things go, it has already obviously been a winning trip for both.
Photography from LAPT7 Chile by Carlos Monti. Follow live streaming coverage throughout LAPT7 Chile in Spanish at PokerStars or via Facebook as well as in Portuguese, also at PokerStars or via Facebook.
Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.