Rob Georato, 41, a former high school math teacher in Wisconsin, and now a semi-pro poker player from Naples, Fla., won the eighth ring event at the WSOP circuit tour at Council Bluffs, Iowa, a $300 no-limit hold’em tournament.
His victory earned him $18,694 and a diamond-encrusted gold ring, and vaulted him into the lead into the Casino Champion points race for a seat in a $1 million event in Las Vegas next year. With two previous cashes in ring events, a third and a 14th, he now has 90 points, just enough to slip past the ex-leader, Jeffrey Epstein, who has 87.5. There is one more points event left, not counting the main event, where the winner gets a seat. .
Georato described his victory as a “roller coaster ride.” Two key hands for him came when players attempted bluffs while he was holding big hands, once when he had pocket kings, another time when he had flopped a set of kings. He was involved in a lot of all-in pots, but each time he had more chips and could not be busted. In general, though, with his big chip lead, players tried to avoid tangling with him. He said that once two unpredictable players were knocked out he could play straightforward poker.
Georato began playing poker with neighborhood gangs in his teens. He has a half-dozen or so circuit cashes. His biggest payday was $38,600 for finishing 195th at the WSOP main event in 2008. His hobby is traveling.
This event had 276 players with a $77,888 prize pool.
For a look at all of the players who cashed from the Ante Up coverage area be sure to pick up a copy of Ante Up’s October issue in your local poker room.