Tomorrow night someone will win €1,500,000. Count the zeroes, it’s a hell of a lot money. Enough to let you buy a small fleet of Bentleys, a flat here in Monaco (they do not come cheap) or possibly even a round at Jimmy’z nightclub. Of course, there is a strong likelihood that there will be a deal between the final two players that will see both of them winning in excess of €1,000,000. That really is life changing money whether you’re an amateur or a pro. Jam it into securities and play the occasional tournament or bankroll yourself to play the next 20 seasons of the EPT. It’s your money, it’s your choice.
The previous seven champions have largely taken the pro poker player route, some grinding live and some online. Last year’s champion, Ivan Freitez, hasn’t exactly followed his win with a string of scintillating results despite being a regular fixture on the tour. He’s made one cash: 12th place in a £400 turbo bounty at EPT London for £750. He seems largely to be the exception to the rule, although he has had less time to score follow-up results.
Season 1: Rob Hollink, Netherlands
€635,000 (total live winnings $3,253,404)
Season 2: Jeff Williams, USA
€900,000 (total live winnings $1,963,268)
Season 3: Gavin Griffin, USA
€1,825,010 (total live winnings $4,636,754)
Season 4: Glen Chorny, Canada
€2,020,000 (total live winnings $3,535,814)
Season 5: Pieter De-Korver, Netherlands
€2,300,000 (total live winnings $3,288,350)
Season 6: Nicolas Chouity, Lebanon
€1,700,000 (total live winnings $2,686,136)
Season 7: Ivan Freitez, Venezuela
€1,500,000 (total live winnings $2,456,071)
Season 8: tbc
Nicolas Chouity has cashed in three EPT main events since his win here in Monaco as well as enjoying prodigious online success. Pieter De-Korver has had plenty of cashes since his win three years ago but only one major, a $1,000 6-max score of $110,050 beating Kevin Eyster and Mike Leah to book first place.
Gavin Griffin followed his Grand Final victory with a WPT title which completed his triple crown, the first player to ever do so. Four other players have followed in his footsteps since; Roland De Wolfe, Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier , Jake Cody and, just last week, Davidi Kitai.
Jeff Williams’ 2006 win here in Monaco was his first live cash, he still wasn’t old enough to play in casinos in his native US after all. That changed a couple of years later and Williams tore into the WSOP twice narrowly missing out on bracelets but booking large six-figure scores nonetheless.
After Glen Chorny’s 2008 title there’s been moderate amounts of live tournament scores but it’s all been Stateside with no live scores after 2009. He’s still alive I’ve been told but beyond that we know little.
This year’s winner will get to line up against some of his forerunners. I’ve been told De-Korver, Chouity and Freitez are among those confirmed for Tuesday’s Champion of Champions.
Level 26: blinds 20,000-40,000, ante 5,000
Players: 14 of 665
Average stack: 1,425,000
Click here for live coverage and more features from The PokerStars and Monte-Carlo®Casino European Poker Tour Grand Final.