It was a blast – let’s do it again
The World Poker Tour has announced the inevitable: the WPT World Championship at Wynn Las Vegas is set to return this December. The most successful and highly-regarded new live tournament in ages is scheduled for November 29 to December 23, putting a cap on Season XXI of the World Poker Tour.
“The WPT World Championship festival was such an extraordinary milestone during our 20th season last year, thanks to partner Wynn Las Vegas and the enthusiastic support of the players,” said WPT CEO Adam Pliska in a press release. “It is our hope that we have started a tradition in poker that we can enhance and add to each season. We look forward to making this year’s World Championship even more memorable for players.”
There are three championship tournaments during the entire poker festival. The first is the WPT Prime Championship December 7-12, followed by the $10,400 buy-in WPT World Championship December 12-18. During the headliner event is the WPT Ladies Championship, running December 16-18.
The rest of the festival schedule has yet to be finalized.
The WPT World Championship was not a “new” tournament, per se, but before last year, it had not been officially held since 2017. And back then, the buy-in was $25,000. But when the WPT decided to bring it back, it went for the gold, offering the largest guaranteed prize pool – $15 million – in live tournament history.
It worked. The tournament drew 2,960 players, an unheard of number outside of the World Series of Poker Main Event, and nearly doubled the guarantee, generating a $29,008,000 prize pool. The top 370 finishers made the money, with Eliot Hudon taking the top prize of $4,136,000. Benny Glazer was the runner-up, claiming a nice consolation prize of $2,830,000.
“After paying out more than $53 million in total prize money last December, we are excited for the return of the WPT World Championship at Wynn,” said Ryan Beauregard, executive director of poker operations at Wynn Las Vegas. “Due to last year’s incredible turnout and the strong rapport we built with WPT, we have extended the festival dates and will create a tournament schedule to make 2023 even more memorable.”
The WPT World Championship was so successful that it won “Best Event” at this month’s Global Poker Awards.
Until then, there are still seven scheduled stops on the World Poker Tour. The next one is WPT Rolling Thunder at the Thunder Valley Casino Resort outside of Sacramento, California. The festival begins next week and the Main Event is slated for April 1-4.