European Poker Tour Introduction
The PokerStars European Poker Tour (EPT) has become one of the most prominent poker tours in the world, despite its modest emergence. As per the data recorded last year, the tour saw 5,457 players from 118 different countries around the world battled for a collective prize pool of € 29,365,302. It is poles apart from the first ever European Poker Tour event in Barcelona, which saw a mere participation of 229 contestants, each ponied up € 1,000 to play in the main event. In the contemporary tour, the average buy-in is eight times more the earlier one.
During its course, right from the very onset, the tour has enlightened us with some of the most thrilling and exhilarating moments of TV poker ever; it has had its share of champions and charlatan and clowns; transformed rags to riches and in addition to it, landed to some of Europe’s most luxurious destinations. Let us look at this beautiful journey of EPT.
History of the European Poker Tour
Nearly 13-14 years ago, in 2004, the sound of poker echoed in the ears of numerous fans. The previous year saw, Chris Moneymaker, win the World Series of Poker Main Event following the qualification through the PokerStars for a buy-in of mere $39. Being an American ordinary citizen, he caught everyone’s eye with his sterling performance and more importantly became the first World Series champion to qualify through a satellite, proving to be an inspiration to all who eventually aspired to be a poker player. To summarize the European Poker Tour, a high buy-in tour that could be fed through PokerStars collaboration, via online satellites, giving new apprentices a fair opportunity to lock horns with the par excellence players in the world, throwing up a blend of unlikely champions, as well seasoned, notable ones.
European Poker Tour was a vision held by the Englishman, an ace television director and in addition to his existing acquisitions has won the first ever Poker Million tournament on the Isle of the Man in 2000, John Duthie. Owing to the recent inauguration and success of the World Poker Tournament (WPT) in United States, Duthie being galvanized conceived the whole idea of a European analogous.
In an interview, Duthie said “I established the EPT, designed the logo, went around to the casinos getting their agreement, broadcasting agreements, etc. I got [PokerStars] sponsorship money, and basically just spent seven months setting up the company”. He further went on to add that “it [the first tournament] wasn’t huge, but it was a beginning. And what was important was that the players were really embracing it”.
In bringing what he envisioned to life, he went on to integrate his contacts pertaining to TV industry and those in world poker to foster his nascent tour which ultimately was televised in the very year. When asked about the maiden appearance of it, he said “I realized we had to televise to make it a big commercial success”, “and also for the players to be interested to play in it in order to get the exposure”, he further added.
The composition was always prominent with the players as well – a deep stack gave the participants lots of play in the chips and rewarded skill. The tally of champions for the inaugural season clearly manifested that, with the cream rising to the top: Alexander Stevic, John Shipley, Ram Vaswani, Noah Boeken, Brandon Schaefer, Pascal Perault and Rob Hollink, all are contesting at the prime level of poker even to the date. EPT has always pressured on calibre over anything else and it does till date.
Following the first season, the tour has just bloomed and become taller in stature. Till the tour reached to its season number four, the buy-in had climbed up to € 8,000 and the prize pools became prodigious, as did the fields. An increase in the number of halts was also seen, from 7 to 12, and further continued to do so, attaining a peak of 13 various cities each year from season 6 to season 8. While a new venue, Paradise Island in the Bahamas made its introductory appearance in season 4, for the PCA, officially an EPT event.
The European Poker Tour has now been hosted at an aggregate of 20 different destinations, over its course, from Monte Carlo to Warsaw and Loutraki to Kiev. However, there have merely been two cities that feature the tour every single year since its inaugural, Barcelona and London. The fifth season has been the substantial with respect to the number of participants and prize pools, with $60 million of prize money being won across 11 events. Amongst the 7,768 participants who played EPT events that year, 2,237 have won their place through PokerStars satellites. Howbeit, the season four recorded the colossal of the prize ever in the history of EPT, when Canadian Glen Chorny took home a massive $ 3,196,354 prize at the EPT Grand Finale Monte Carlo.
It has had its share of high end drama, as well and not just confined within the boundaries of poker tables. Back in 2010, at the EPT Berlin, tournament was mugged by a few masked men wielding knives who ran away with € 242,000. While no one there was seriously harmed, however the incident created a ruckus in the crowd. Three days after, robbers were apprehended and later sentenced to three years of prison, the bulletin read.
The dynamics of the EPT festival has undergone a change since the materialisation of the High Roller tournament in recent years; these massive buy-ins tournaments feature just the best in the world with short fields and enormous prize pools. However, a group of German professional have subjugated the High Rollers and Super High Rollers so far, this clique includes players such as Tobias Reinkemeier, Philipp Gruissem, Igor Kurganov and Fabian Quoss.
The main events still prolongs its universality and remains as flourishing as ever, and it’s the Brits who are sitting pretty here, leading the board with 13 first-place main event finishes, and at its tail is the United States with 12 and then Germany with 10.
John Duthie commented “I knew it could be a success,” reflecting on how far the tour has come. “But I never really thought that it could have been as big a success as it has been, because it very much requires the complete support of the players. But PokerStars were crucial because they were constantly feeding in the critical mass of players to every single event by running satellites. They were constantly giving me support on the ground, and advising me on press and marketing, so they were very important. Ultimately the European Poker Tour grew so big because it was something the market needed at the time. The European market still needs the EPT, and although other copycats have tried to follow it, it will never be eclipsed by anybody else”. However, the visionary left the European Poker Tour in 2011 to pursue other projects and the poker world is in his forever debt for what a marvel he has provided them with.
Top 10 Prizes in EPT History
The EPT might not possess the same glitz and glamour that the WSOP has, but it still proffers some heavy prizes. Below we look at the some of the biggest prize polls that the EPT has paid out and it can be inferred that they all make the winners multi-millionaires. Now we don’t know about you, but a few million dollars would certainly don’t make anyone grumpy.
|1||EPT4 MONTE CARLO||1||GELN CHORNY||$ 3,196,354|
|2||EPT4 MONTE CARLO||1||PIETER DE KORVER||$ 3,056,255|
|3||EPT7 CARIBBEAN ADVENTURE||1||POORYA NAZARI||$ 3,000,000|
|4||EPT3 MONTE CARLO||1||GAVIN GRIFFIN||$ 2,434,061|
|5||EPT7 CARIBBEAN ADVENTURE||1||GALEN HALL||$ 2,300,000|
|6||EPT6 MONTE CARLO||1||NICOLAS CHOUITY||$ 2,261,000|
|7||EPT7 CARIBBEAN ADVENTURE||1||HARRISON GIMBEL||$ 2,200,000|
|8||EPT7 MADRID||1||IVAN FREITEZ||$ 2,151,600|
|9||EPT7 CARIBBEAN ADVENTURE||1||BERTRAND GROSPELLIER||$ 2,000,000|
|10||EPT5 SANREMO||1||CONSTANT RIJKENBERG||$ 1,967,819|
Playing the European Poker Tour is quite Extravagant?
People who find € 8,000 a bit on the richer side does not need to worry as we let you in on how you can still fulfil your fantasy of playing EPT. If truth be told, it is possible to make EPT poker a reality for just a few bucks. Since it’s a PokerStars tour event, qualification is exclusive to the site, however they proffers satellites to suit every pocket. In fact, if you are willing to put the volume in online, you have a chance of qualifying with your frequwnt player points.
EPT satellites run every day of the week, so there are a handful of feeders that can get you a place into the regular Texas Hold’Em poker EPT satellites for the price of a Big Mac, and you can find these tournaments in the PokerStars lobby in a few months prior to EPT events. These regular satellites typically range from € 22 to € 530, with the number of seats available entirely dependent on the size of the buy-in. in the meantime, live satellites will spring up at the venue in the days precursory to the main events. So what are you waiting for? Start playing a bit of online poker from tome to time, EPT could be your next stop, and then maybe, just maybe, glory might be just around the corner.
European Poker Tour, EPT Buy-ins and Payouts
PokerStars Live (PSLive) account is a must for all players to participate in any EPT Tournament. If you don’t have an account you can signup for free at PokerStars Live website.
EPT Buy-in Options
Below listed methods can be used for for buying in all upcoming EPT Tournaments.
|Event||Cash||Chips||COM/EU Stars Account||Credit Card||Debit Card||Casino Online Shop||Casino Wire Transfer|
|EPT Open Sochi||X||X||X||X||X||X|
*Credit and Debit Cards are not accepted during EPT Barcelona.
** Players who have chosen for wire transfer of funds need to collect at the Casiona Cage.
EPT Payout Options
One can choose any of the below-listed options to withdraw winnings by a single payment method or by combinations of different methods
|Event||Stars Account||Casino Wire Transfer||Cash|
|EPT Open Sochi||X||X||X|
European Poker Tour 2019 Schedule
EPT Sochi – March 20-29, 2019
PokerStars sponsored European Poker Tour has announced its first stop for its iconic live poker tournament, European Poker Tournament 2019 will be live in Sochi, Russia. EPT 2019 season will be the 15th tour since it’s launch in 2004. The Full Schedule of the event is yet to be released, but PokerStars has announced list of 20 events that will take place in a ten-day tour beginning from 20th March 2019.
|Mar 21 – 24, 2019||No Limit Hold’em – EPT National||руб66,000|
|Mar 24 – 29, 2019||PSLIVE No Limit Hold’em – Main Event||руб192,000|
EPT Sochi 2019 Venue
51 Estonskaya street, Estosadok Village, Sochi, Krasnodar region, Russian Federation