First Cole South, now Brian Townsend. On his blog posted on Wednesday, Townsend revealed that he’d be stepping down as the lead instructor of the popular poker training site CardRunners. Instead, he outlined his new role: “I will still be around in the capacity that I was before I joined CardRunners as a lead instructor. You can find me in the forums participating in discussion as well as watching the videos.”
Townsend joined CardRunners in 2007 and, since then, has helped grow the site into one of the market leaders. Townsend told his blog readers that two more videos are in the works for June: the end of his $50/$100 heads-up match against fellow online poker player “Urnotindanger2” and a Pot Limit Omaha theory discussion with Tom “LearnedFromTV” Chambers.
Why would Townsend vacate a prominent role with CardRunners? He explained that a focus on poker might be to blame: “CardRunners is still a great business, but it is one that is much more time consuming than I would have imagined. I value the friendships I have created here immensely, but over the previous months, I have started to realize that it is time for me to move on and devote my time to playing poker.” In addition to departing from his role with CardRunners, Townsend will no longer be a Full Tilt Red Pro.
In April, Cole “cts” South announced that he was leaving CardRunners to play poker and complete his degree. South admitted that he was “spread too thin,” telling readers in a blog posted on CardRunners’ website, “In the past year I have, at the same time, been a full-time student, a professional poker player, and an owner/instructor of a poker training site, and I’ve found myself spread too thin.” Additionally, South divested himself of ownership in the training site.
Townsend has had his share of run-ins with Full Tilt that have caused his Red Pro status to be suspended. His most recent violation came in December, when Townsend acquired 30,000 hands involving the mystery Swedish online poker pro “Isildur1.” He added his acquired hands to his existing stash of 20,000, which is a violation of Full Tilt Poker’s Terms of Service. Accordingly, Townsend’s Red Pro status was suspended for one month.
The allegations involving “Isildur1” came after fellow CardRunners instructor Brian Hastings took the Swede for over $3 million earlier in the month. However, Hastings told ESPN reporter Gary Wise, “Obviously I’m happy and I’ll take it, but Brian [Townsend] did a ton of work. The three of us discussed a ton of hands and the reports that Brian made, so I’m very thankful to him and to Cole as well.” Hastings’ comments led to the admission by Townsend of violating Full Tilt’s Terms of Service.
In 2008, Townsend admitted to multi-accounting on Full Tilt Poker and PokerStars. On the latter site, Townsend logged in under the user names “aba20” and “makersmark66.” On Full Tilt Poker, Townsend hit the felts under his Red Pro name of “Brian Townsend” and as “Stellarnebula.” Full Tilt suspended his Red Pro status for six months and Townsend agreed to donate $25,000 to charity.
Townsend was not listed as a CardRunners Red Pro on Full Tilt’s website at the time of writing. The remaining CardRunners Red Pros are Isaac Baron, David Benefield, Taylor Caby, Ryan Daut, Hastings, Eric Liu, Mike McDonald, Haseeb Qureshi, Mike Schneider, and Andrew Wiggins. Despite leaving CardRunners, South is still listed as a Full Tilt pro.
Recently, CardRunners merged its StoxPoker brand after site namesake Nick “StoxTrader” Grudzien parted ways with the company. Shortly thereafter, CardRunners launched a brand new website.
Read Townsend’s CardRunners blog.