It’s busy today in Barcelona as the festival prepares for the Main Event, which starts tomorrow at noon. Before that, the organisers somehow have to compress both the Estrellas main event and the Barcelona Cup down to a manageable size to leave sufficient space, plus there’s the issue of the Estrellas High Roller, which has predictably gone nuts.
Martin Harris is still the man to take you through the Estrellas action. He loves Spanish poker so much now that you have to pronounce his first name “Marteeeeeen” otherwise he doesn’t answer.
But as that monster edges closer to the final table it will never reach, let’s have a quick glance at those other events.
The Barcelona Cup has been a knockout. Of course. This is the event that costs €300 to enter but offers six starting flights. If you make it through to the end of any of the flights, that’s your stack for Day 2. But if you are eliminated on any of the days, you can buy back in the next.
That means you can, if you want, have seven stabs at the tournament. You can play all week!
It’s not immediately clear if anyone has needed (or wanted) to take that option, but the fact remains that the tournament has gradually swelled in size day by day. There were 141 players in Flight A (of which 21 made it through); 229 in Flight B (35); 290 in Flight C (44); 431 in Flight D (65); 754 in Flight E (113) and 1,162 in Flight F, with 173 going through.
It means that 451 will come back at 8pm today after which, finally, NOBODY ELSE CAN BLOODY WELL JOIN IN. They can then legitimately start thinking about the €876,201 prize pool. It means 453 players will be paid, €510 is a min-cash and the winner will earn €135,600.
If you fired only one €330 bullet, that’s return of 410 times your buy-in. For comparison, a one-bullet winner of the €50,000 Super High Roller will get a little less than 25 times his buy-in. The Estrellas main event pays 446 times its €1,000, so marginally has the nod in that respect.
Over to the Estrellas High Roller, which began today at noon. To the surprise of absolutely nobody, this tournament has proven popular. When registration closed after 4pm, there were 1,073 players in this one, stumping up €2,000 apiece. There were, of course, plenty of well-known faces.
Liv Boeree, ElkY, Johnny Lodden, Theo Jorgensen, Matthias de Meulder and Eugene Katchalov, Marc-Andre Ladouceur were there, representing Team PokerStars Pro and Team Online. And Pierre Neuville has hopped into this one too, warming up for the November Nine later this year. Zvi Stern is doing the same while Michiel Brummelhuis, who has been there, is involved too. Oh, and isn’t that Martin Jacobson? And Ryan Riess?
Ognyan Dimov is on the list as well as Jannick Wrang, Sebastian Pauli, Pieter de Korver, Michael Tureniec, David Vamplew, Kevin MacPhee, Max Lykov, Robin Ylitalo, Kevin Stani, Dominik Panka, Benny Spindler, Joao Barbosa, Martin Finger and Andrey Pateychuk. And, if I’m honest, they’re just the former EPT champions I noticed. I’m sure there are more.
The prize pool for that is yet to be fully calculated, tabulated and divided. But here’s what we know: it’ll be a lot.
Start your journey to EPT glory by downloading the PokerStars client and having a crack. Follow this EPT event via the EPT app. There you will get all the latest news, chip counts and payouts. You can download it on Android or IOS. All the EPT Barcelona bumf is on the main EPT Barcelona page, while blow-by-blow Super High Roller coverage is on the Super High Roller page.