WPT Continues Growth With Record 839 Players at Legends of Poker
Source: pokergazette.com

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- With an ever-increasing schedule of poker tournaments filling the calendar, the instigator of the worldwide poker phenomenon, the WORLD POKER TOUR®, continues to draw record numbers of players to its events, as evidenced by this weekend's record-breaking turnout for the Legends of Poker at the Bicycle Casino.

With 839 players coming to the table, resulting in a $4,195,000 prize pool, the event stands as the largest ever on the WPT circuit, and those substantial numbers portend potential growth across the board at the remaining 14 events to be filmed for Season IV on the Travel Channel. That sets the scene for another record-shattering total prize pool for the season. Last year, the WPT awarded nearly $70 million to players on the Tour.

First place for the 2005 Legends of Poker will net $1,125,000 for the winner. Last year, the legendary Doyle Brunson captured the crown. That 2004 event drew 667 players and a $3,335,000 prize pool. The turnout this weekend marked a 20% increase in the field. Among the chip leaders are Gabe Kaplan, Jerry Buss and Barry Greenstein. The tournament continues today at 4:15 p.m.

"Our hats are off for the great job done by our colleagues at the Bicycle Casino in securing a field large enough that it had to be split into two starting days," said Steven Lipscomb, CEO and founder of WPT Enterprises, Inc. "The WPT is poised for another season of exceptional play and exceptional growth. Modifying our policy to allow players to wear sponsor logos will also encourage more companies to sponsor players and award seats in our events. This continues to demonstrate our impact on the growth of the sport. We anticipate another record-shattering season."

Next up on the WPT calendar is the Borgata Poker Open at the Borgata Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City, Sept. 19-22.

The WPT launched the poker phenomenon when it first aired on the Travel Channel on March 30, 2003, and it continues to lead the way in developing poker as a major international sport. Viewers and aspiring tour players can log on to www.worldpokertour.com for ways to improve their game or to find out how to register for the 14 remaining WPT tournaments. The highest rated show ever on The Travel Channel, the WPT is now licensed for broadcast in more than 100 countries and territories worldwide. WORLD POKER TOUR® airs every Wednesday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on the Travel Channel.

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