Kansas Farmer Kirk Stewart Wins Inaugural Native American Casino Poker Tour Main Event
57-Year-Old Will Be On Upcoming Cover of Card Player
At Choctaw Casino Resort in Durant, Oklahoma, Stewart took $50,000, the buffalo trophy, a $1,500 World Series of Poker Circuit seat and his face on the cover of Card Player Magazine.
He had both Jason Simon and former PokerStars Supernova Elite Brandon Vise on the ropes when the deal was made. Simon and Vise chopped up the remaining prize pool for scores of about $45,000 apiece.
In addition to Stewart, Simon and Vise, the final table consisted of Reggi Trotter (4th), Martin Tyson (5th), Vartan Tonian (6th), Brett Rager (7th), Jeremy Vaughn (8th) and Sebastian Tejada (9th).
Vaughn, a 23-year-old professional poker player, was cheered on via Twitter by Ben Lamb, his backer. The Texan was one of the big stacks throughout the tournament until finding himself short at the final table.
With a deep structure for a $1,000 event, the final table was a long one before a deal was made. The players looked exhausted after two grueling days of poker.
Despite the hour, Stewart was all smiles after the win, saying that he would put his prize money into his farm — as well as play a little bit more poker.
The 57-year-old has only been playing for about three years — finding the game after his mom passed away and he had some free time — but never let an experienced final table bully him.
Stewart’s key hand of the day came when he called a big all-in bet from Seneca Easley (10th) on a J-J-2 flop. Easley had two tens, while Stewart was holding A-K. An ace peeled off on the turn, giving Stewart a massive pot that propelled him to the win.
A total of 324 players put up the $1,000 buy-in for Card Player’s NACPT main event on Saturday — making a prize pool of $290,681. While the field was mostly comprised of local players from the region, some of the game’s most well-known came out as well.
Among the notables in the field were T.J. Cloutier, Adam Geyer, Allen Carter, Tommy Vedes, La Sengphet, John “Tex” Barch, Mario Silvestri, Gregg Merkow, Brandon Terry, Clint Tolbert and Dennis Phillips, who provided commentary for Card Player’s live streaming coverage on Sunday.
About Choctaw Casino Resort’s Poker
Choctaw, which recently received a Four Diamond rating by AAA, is home to a 30-table poker room with a personal lounge and high-limit area, located on its own floor away from the noise of other games. With a private staff and guest services, the lounge makes poker players feel comfortable year round.
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