They’re back from dinner on Day 1A of the Latin American Poker Tour Grand Final. Most of them, anyway. Unofficially speaking, there were 132 total entries before the reentry door closed tight for the day, with just about 100 of them returning to their seats a short while ago with an idea of enjoying a dessert of four more one-hour levels before play will pause later tonight.

Of those total entries, two-time LAPT champion Oscar Alache accounted for two of them, having reentered after busting earlier, no doubt with an eye toward retaining his lead in the LAPT Season 8 Player of the Year race.

Speaking of LAPT POYs, Chile’s Amos Ben won that award back in Season 6, and ranked inside the top 10 here at the end of Season 8. He’s also ranked near or even at the top of today’s chip counts, having built up over 85,000.

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Amos Ben
Red spades left in today’s field include Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez and Jorge “Baalim” Limon, both of whom are still hovering near the 30,000-chip starting stack.

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Team PokerStars Pro Leo Fernandez
Meanwhile there are three women left in the Day 1A, and by the luck of the draw all three are seated at the same table. Of the trio — all from Brazil — Renata Teixeira is the best off chip-wise as she’s edging up toward 50,000, while Laurie Tournier and Larissa Metrán are each battling with about half that amount.

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Larissa Metrán (left) and Renata Teixeira (right)…
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…and across from them, Laurie Tournier
There are a number of players in the same predicament as Tournier and Metrán, one of whom is Diego Ventura who is just under 20,000 at the moment.

Coming to Brazil has to bring good feelings to the player known as “Die Ventura” on PokerStars. It wasn’t that long ago the Peruvian came to Brazil as a student, and was here spending part of his time working as a waiter when he first discovered poker.

Not long after that, Ventura became a different kind of student — a student of the game — working with coaches to improve to a point where he earned more than $2 million total online including final tabling the Sunday Million multiple times. He also won himself a seat in the 2015 PCA Main Event via an online satellite, and ran that entry all of the way to a runner-up finish and a $907,080 cash.

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Diego Ventura
Ventura earned a couple more small EPT cashes this year while also final tabling a the World Series of Poker “Monster Stack” over the summer in Vegas where he finished fifth. We’ll see if he can work himself into a more prosperous position tonight, much as he managed to do in Brazil before.

Photography from LAPT8 Brazil by Carlos Monti. You can also follow the action in Spanish here and in Portuguese here.

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Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.


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