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Bellagio Releases Five-Star World Poker Classic Schedule

All Preliminary Events Will Feature a Buy-in of $1,000 with Rebuys


Jack McClellandThe schedule for the 2010 Five-Star World Poker Classic has been released by Bellagio, and one thing that will jump out at players is the preliminary-events schedule.

Each one of the 18 preliminary events features a $1,000 buy-in with rebuys. Two of those events will be pot-limit Omaha, while the rest will spread no-limit hold’em. Card Player spoke with the tournament director at Bellagio, Jack McClelland (pictured right), about the changes in the preliminary schedule.

“We had some rebuy tournaments this time [2009 Five-Diamond World Poker Classic, and we had a very good response to them,” said McClelland. “What it does is it gives the players options. The players who can’t afford to play in a $5,000 event or a $3,000 event, they can afford to play in a $1,000 event and still take a shot at the big money. Now the players who can afford to and want to reload to super-size their stacks, they can do that, too. Now the guy with the silver bullet, the one $1,000 buy-in, he might not get there as often, but when he does he might pick up a quarter of a million dollars on his thousand, as opposed to $50,000-$60,000.”

The turnout for preliminary events at the recently completed Five-Diamond World Poker Classic had a lot to do with the new preliminary schedule. There were 12 preliminary events that did not feature rebuys during the tournament series, and they had a combined prize pool worth $2,506,480. The four preliminary events with rebuys combined for a prize pool worth $1,757,155. The preliminaries with rebuys averaged prize pools worth $439,289, while the normal preliminaries averaged prize pools worth $208,873.

“We threw the rebuy tournaments out there, and the players just went crazy with them, so we said, ‘OK, if that’s what you want, you got it,’” said McClelland.

The tournament series begins on March 30, 2010, and it will conclude with the World Poker Tour Championship event that begins on April 18 and crowns a winner on April 24. The WPT Championship is the conclusion of Season VIII for the Tour, and it is one of the most prestigious tournaments of the year. It will feature a buy-in of $25,000. Last year, the WPT Championship attracted 338 entrants and the champion was Yevgeniy Timoshenko, who took home $2,149,960 in prize money. Satellites for the 2010 WPT Championship will run on April 15, 16, and 17 at Bellagio.

“It will be the same for the super-satellites, as well. Instead of $2,500 buy-ins, they will be $1,000 buy-ins, so everybody has a chance,” said McClelland about the satellites.

Bellagio will also update their blinds structures for tournaments in 2010. Players will begin with a starting chip stack that is four times the buy-in in all events. Blinds will begin at 100-200 in championship events and 50-100 in preliminary and daily events.

Here is a look at the full schedule for the 2010 Five-Star World Poker Classic:

NOTE: All events begin at noon unless noted otherwise.

Tuesday, Mar. 30: Event No. 1 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Wednesday, Mar. 31: Event No. 2 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Thursday, Apr. 1: Event No. 3 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Friday, Apr. 2: Event No. 4 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Saturday, Apr. 3: Event No. 5 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Sunday, Apr. 4: Event No. 6 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Monday, Apr. 5: Event No. 7 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Tuesday, Apr. 6: Event No. 8 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Wednesday, Apr.7: Event No. 9 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Thursday, Apr. 8: Event No. 10 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Friday, Apr. 9: Event No. 11 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Saturday, Apr. 10: Event No. 12 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Sunday, Apr. 11: Event No. 13 ($1,000 pot-limit Omaha with rebuys)
Monday, Apr. 12: Event No. 14 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Tuesday, Apr. 13: Event No. 15 ($1,000 pot-limit Omaha with rebuys)
Wednesday, Apr. 14: Event No. 16 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Friday, Apr. 16: Event No. 17 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)
Thursday, Apr. 22, 2 p.m.: Event No. 19 ($1,000 no-limit hold’em with rebuys)

2010 $25,000 WPT Championship schedule:

Sunday, Apr. 18: Day 1
Monday, Apr. 19: Day 2
Tuesday, Apr. 20: Day 3
Wednesday, Apr. 21: Day 4
Thursday, Apr. 22: Day 5
Friday, Apr. 23: Day 6
Saturday, Apr. 24, 4 p.m.: Final table



over 12 years ago

April Fools? No? That can't be right. It's December. This is wrong for so many reasons. Rebuys are great in moderation, but every tournament? Boring. And this approach ignores one of the paramount themes of tournaments, everyone starts with the same number of chips. And don't be fooled by the idea that starting with 4x chips is a dramatic improvement. Blinds now start one level up from before, and who knows what levels are skipped later. Epic FAIL.


over 12 years ago

Great way to limit the number of players. Deep pocket pro's won't have to compete with larger fields. Good way to make the event "exclusive".


over 12 years ago

Is Jack smoking crack or just stupid?


over 12 years ago

I USED to respect Jack McC and the Bellagio poker staff as a whole before BUT... this is ridiculous. Ask Daniel Negreanu about his thoughts on the Bellagio's stature in the poker world.