Georgia’s David Bach became the first double bracelet winner of the 2017 World Series of Poker this weekend, taking down the tough final table in Event #30: the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship. Bach outpaced the likes of Daniel Negreanu, who made his third final table of this WSOP, and Jason Mercier, who won this event last year en route to the 2016 WSOP Player of the Year title.
Despite his two wins this month, Bach sits just 20th in the 2017 WSOP Player of the Year rankings with 301.79 points. Compare that to Pablo Mariz, whose win in the Millionaire Maker and runner-up finish in the $1,000 Tag Team event (plus two other cashes, compared to one other for Bach) give him 459.41 points.
Bach’s other victory this summer was in the $1,500 Dealer’s Choice event. All told, he has three WSOP bracelets; the first was a biggie, as he added his name to the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy by winning the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship in 2009.
In his interview afterward, Bach said he is able to stay grounded by thinking about his wife and two-year old back home.
“Sometimes, when I feel things going off the rail a little bit because poker is an emotional game, I’ll remind myself by looking at something or thinking about my family that I’m playing for them. If I’m going to be here away from my family, I need to try and play my best,” he said.
Frankly, thinking about the fact that I’m playing for my family would make me more emotional and more nervous, but that’s one of countless reasons why I am sitting here, writing about poker, and Bach is there, winning WSOP tournaments.
Very often, we hear poker players say that the bracelet is more meaningful than the money, especially when it is their first WSOP win. While the honor of simply winning is likely quite special for Bach, it seems that, for him, the money is of greater importance.
“The first win (this year), obviously, is great, but it wasn’t that much money,” he explained. “It was $119,000. It was great. It sounds like a ton of money, but I’m spending more than that in buy-ins over the summer. This is a big enough win that I’m going to make money for the summer no matter what.”
And when Bach is spending so much time away from his family, he feels that he needs to justify that distance by bringing home a paycheck.
“What has happened is that since I’ve been together with my wife and we’ve had a son, I haven’t played enough poker. So, I’ve been spending my bankroll. I’ve been winning when I play, but I’ve been spending more than what I’m winning. I wanted to really have a good summer to make up for that and it’s really nice to have some financial security when you have a family,” Bach said.
Bach said that this final table was incredibly difficult, with top-flight opponents and a “tougher chip stack situation” than in his Dealer’s Choice win. After coming back from what looked like the precipice of elimination, he felt he was “freerolling” when it was down to four players.
David Bach cashed for $382,208 in his triumph, taking his lifetime live tournament earnings to over $4 million.
2017 World Series of Poker Event #30: $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship – Final Table Results
1. David Bach – $383,208
2. Eric Rodawig – $236,841
3. Don Zewin – $163,557
4. Andrew Brown – $115,485
5. Jason Mercier – $83,415
6. Daniel Negreanu – $61,667
7. Yuebin Guo – $46,687
8. Jerry Wong – $36,218