Poker News Daily: You’re 24 years-old, have a finance degree, are an expert at poker, and are a successful entrepreneur as head of CardRunners.com. Did you ever think that, at your age, you’d be where you are today?
Caby: I really don’t stop to think about it too much now. I didn’t think that I would be in this position when I first started playing poker, went to college, or graduated. It just happened slowly. I’m definitely lucky to be where I am.
PND: How did you start playing poker?
Caby: I started playing with friends in high school when the game became more popular because of the movie “Rounders.” Once the Moneymaker effect came and everyone started watching poker on ESPN, I got more interested in the game just like most of my friends did. I started out really small, playing with friends and watching on television. Then, it turned into a passion.
PND: Talk about the development of your poker training site, CardRunners. How was it formed and who was involved?
Caby: CardRunners the idea of my good friend Andrew Wiggins and me. Back in 2005, we were just starting to come up as online poker players and had success turning a small deposit into a large amount of money. At the time, I was playing $5,000 buy-in games. I had success and people were asking us to teach them the strategies that we used. We felt that the best way to do it would be to set up a website to do so rather than help people individually. In 2005, we put together CardRunners, worked on it over the summer, and then launched it.
PND: In your opinion, what separates CardRunners from other poker training sites out there?
Caby: We are the second oldest training site out of about 15 that I know of. There are about 900 videos in our library, which is by far the most of any poker training site. The biggest thing is that we have the best instructors on the internet, in my opinion. We have a plethora of high-stakes pros who are not only good players, but are also articulate speakers. That’s really important.
We also have a diverse selection. We’re not just a tournament site, sit and go site, or cash game site. We have every type of poker training video you could possibly want. We focus more on No Limit Hold’em cash games. That’s where we all got our start, but at the same time we have plenty of instructors in many different games. If you go to CardRunners, there’s something for everyone. We have top-quality content.
PND: CardRunners recently merged with StoxPoker. What can members expect?
Caby: In the beginning, there is not going to be a huge difference for current members of CardRunners. The biggest thing that our members will see is that we’ll be offering some of StoxPoker’s content for free to CardRunners members. There will be about ten videos to start with, which will be some of StoxPoker’s top-quality content to show our customers that there are other viable options out there. At the same time, it’ll add some value for free. They won’t have to pay any money and will be getting training videos that we think are really valuable.
Over the long-haul, we’re going to keep the websites separate, so CardRunners will be run by the same management team as before and StoxPoker will be run by the same team as before. CardRunners will be focusing on the intermediate and advanced training that we’ve become known for. StoxPoker will focus on beginner and intermediate training so that there’s something for everyone under the CardRunners umbrella. Even small-stakes guys that have never been to a poker training site before or don’t know what it’s all about can join StoxPoker because there’s no sign-up fee anymore. It’s going to be cheap, relatively speaking, for a membership to StoxPoker.
PND: Talk about the hiring of Lee Jones, the former Poker Room Manager of PokerStars.
Caby: Lee and I have been friends for a few years now. We had a mutual respect for each other while working in different parts of the industry, but both having success. Lee wanted to come back to the United States because he was working in Europe with PokerStars. We talked and thought it might be good to add someone like him.
He adds a great amount of credibility and integrity to our website. At the time, we were a relatively unknown online company and gaining popularity. We wanted to take the next step of becoming more well-known to mainstream poker players. Lee has been a great fit for us and it’s been a pleasure to work with him.
PND: Besides signing up for a membership at CardRunners, what advice do you have for newcomers in poker?
Caby: You have to take it seriously. If you want to win and you’re interested in doing it for more than just fun, you have to take it seriously. You can’t just have poker be a part-time hobby that you’re going to think about every once in a while and then come out and win a bunch of money. That’s not how it works anymore. There are a lot of very good players, both online and in live games. I’m not trying to scare people, but they need to have the mentality that they’re playing to win. You can have a good time while you’re winning.
You don’t have to treat poker like a job, but you have to focus on improving your game and not just playing. A lot of people are on autopilot when they play. They sit down at the table and aren’t thinking about every decision. At the table, you should be thinking about every single decision you make and why you’re doing it. After the session you play, you should review your hands, ask questions to friends, and post them on forums. Make friends who are playing poker, which is really important in your development as a player.