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Heartland Poker Tour Generates First Million Dollar Prize Pool

Craig Casino Takes Home $293,270 For Beating Field Of 668

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Craig Casino - Photo Courtesy of HPTThe Heartland Poker Tour generated its first ever million dollar prize pool this weekend at the Golden Gates Casino and Poker Parlour in Black Hawk, Colorado.

The $1,500 main event drew a field of 668 players and created a total prize pool of $1,035,650 thanks to a new re-entry format that allowed busted players to buy-in on subsequent starting days.

Eventual winner Craig Casino, from Winfield, Illinois banked $293,270 for his victory over runner-up Mary Flurkey of Golden, Colorado. Flurkey took home a career high of $146,633 for her performance.

The first HPT event in Minnesota featured a modest prize pool, but the tour has grown tremendously since its inception in 2005. Greg Lang, one of the HPT founders, pointed out the increase in turnout.

“Our first prize pool was $100,000,” said Lang. “Tonight, we awarded over $1 million. We owe thanks for the support of many dedicated folks along the way.”

The HPT is available on television in over 100 million U.S. households and is also distributed in parts of Europe, the Middle East and the Caribbean.

Here is a look at the final table results.

1. Craig Casino — $293,270
2. Mary Flurkey — $146,633
3. Dan Hirleman — $87,217
4. Jimmy Frisk — $67,345
5. Phil Martin — $57,108
6. Darren Hicks — $47,172