Posted 3/4/11 : 3-year-old wins main prize of $1.65 million
A relatively unknown 23-year-old poker player from New Jersey, Gregory Brooks, scored a surprise win in the World Poker Tour LA Poker Classic this week, beating more experienced players to take home $1 654 120.
The tournament attracted 681 entries, creating a $6 538 000 prize pool and generating significant excitement at the venue, the Commerce Casino.
Although Brooks is experienced in online poker action, this was only his fifth live tournament, and the first in which he has clinched the top spot. Prior to his major bankroll-booster win at the Commerce his next largest payday was a $12 000 second placing in a January 2010 Pokerstars Caribbean Adventure event.
His entry in the LA Poker Classic this week was on impulse, occurring whilst he was taking a break from poker and visiting the area with friends.
The final table contained international names with which to conjure, including initial chip leader Carlos Mortensen, 2008 WPT Borgata Champ Vivek Rajkumar, 2009 CardPlayer Online Player of the Year Steve Gross, WSOP ace Darryll Fish and poker veteran Amir Lehavot.
Brooks seized the chip lead early in the game and managed to hold onto it through to the heads up against Rajkumar, where he used his lead to good advantage and took down the winner's trophy and major cash prize. Rajkumar's runner up take-home was a respectable $908 730, whilst all the finalists were in six-figure payday country.