One of the highest anticipated annual Mississippi events just wrapped up at the IP Biloxi (results are on the next page). Thousands of players visit the Magnolia State in hopes of taking home a shiny new World Series of Poker Circuit ring, and the paycheck that comes with it.
One familiar face among the regular contenders is Tim Burt. Local to Biloxi, he didn’t have far to travel or hotel rooms to book. Instead, he had a much bigger challenge to face.
Tim, largely considered to be the best mixed-game player in the southern United States, intended to go for back-to-back championships in the H.O.R.S.E. ring event. Despite smaller fields to wade through, winning the same event two years in a row is an astronomical long shot.
Apparently, it isn’t such a long shot when you can seamlessly shift between games, calculating odds and chip management with the proficiency he brings to the table. On Oct. 28 Tim defended his title as the reigning IP Biloxi mixed-game champion when he took home a second ring and a paycheck of $6,567.
When mixed-game events are your specialty, you find yourself in a certain Catch 22. Mixed games undoubtedly require a higher level of skill and poker ability, and with that comes significantly smaller playing fields.
The upside is you’re less likely to run into new players who could theoretically “luck box” their way into a final table. The downside is first-place payouts usually pale in comparison to the same victory in a no-limit hold’em event.
I’ve known Tim for a while, as we tend to follow the Mississippi poker trail with an annual summer in Vegas thrown in for variety. We have plenty of mutual friends, of which they’ll all say the same thing: Tim is one of the nicest guys in poker. I caught up with him to share congratulations on his back-to-back accomplishment, and pick his brain for a short Q&A.
Let’s start with the obvious, Tim. How does it feel to win the H.O.R.S.E. event two years in a row? It feels great! I wish the buy-in was bigger and the prize money was more. I hope to actually take my mixed-game success to the big stage this summer and play every mixed game, stud/8, and Omaha/8 tourney at the WSOP next summer so I can win some real money.
What’s the secret to that kind of success in mixed-game tournaments? There is less variance and less educational information out there on the games and you have less of a luck factor. Also, not many people can play five games well. You can teach a monkey to play no-limit hold’em, and I don’t mean Will “The Poker Monkey” Souther.
Do you have any quirky pregame rituals or superstitions? No superstitions. My motto on luck is everyone gets lucky, but lucky people get lucky in big situations.
How long have you been playing poker? I started playing stud at the age of 6 with my dad and his brothers on holidays. I started playing limit hold’em in 1997 in a pool hall in Grenada, Miss., at 17 years of age where I ran my own poker game.
What about the mixed games appeals to you? The mixed games give me an edge you can rarely exploit in no-limit hold’em. By that I meanfreerolling and also sensing my opponent’s weaker games and punishing them where they are not comfortable.
Could you share a few basic tips for someone who would like to start playing mixed games? I’d say play online low stakes eight-game mix on PokerStars, but that isn’t an option for Americans at the present moment. I would advise people to start a $4-$8 mixed-limit game in their home casino. It will catch on quicker than you think, and you will quickly see the better players get the money more often than in no-limit.
Tell me something about you. I’m from Grenada, Miss., I served four years in the Army from 2001-05, including two tours of service in Iraq. My hobbies include watching sports, messing around with sports cars (mostly Mustangs), partying, chasing women and enjoying any outdoor activity away from the poker table.
So what are you going to do with your rings? My hands are too small to wear them, and I don’t believe in wearing poker rings or bracelets except the day you win them. They sit stagnant in my trophy case waiting to be sold if I go busto.
Tell me about your best and worst poker moment. My best was probably winning my first World Poker Open PLO rebuy in Tunica back in ’08 with a single bullet. The worst moment is probably the last tourney I made a deep run in, which was today, finishing nine from the money in the WSOP Circuit main here at the IP.
What are your plans for the next six months? I plan to follow the WSOP Circuit mostly. I want to assure myself a seat in the million-dollar freeroll this summer instead of being lazy like last season and bubbling.
Of his 35 notable cashes, more than 20 of them are in games other than NLHE. He’s definitely someone to keep an eye on next summer in Vegas as he continues to take his game to the next level.
ON TAP: Though 2011 is wrapping up, poker season in Mississippi is only half finished. The first two weeks of December everyone will be at Gold Strike in Tunica for the Winter Poker Classic. The main event in that series will be $1,500 on Dec. 10 at noon. There will be daily super satellites at 4 p.m. ($100 with $40 rebuys) and one seat is guaranteed.
A nearly month-long marathon at the WPT event at the Beau Rivage follows in January, including a million-dollar-guarantee prize pool. I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday season, and I look forward to seeing you at the next event.
— Jennifer Gay is a poker journalist, poker supervisor and player from the Mid-South region. She can be contacted at facebook.com/aceofjewels.
WSOP Circuit, IP Casino Resort, Biloxi, Miss., Oct. 27-Nov. 7
Event 1 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 272 • Prize Pool: $79,152
1. Randall Goodner, Atlanta, $18,647
2. John Dolan, Bonita Springs, FL, $11,540
3. Randolph Reynolds, Jacksonville, FL, $8,373
4. Darrelle Greene, Macon, GA, $6,177
5. Peter Mavro, Las Vegas, $4,633
6. Mark Rose, Orlando, FL, $3,531
7. Bryant Lipscomb, Ft. Smith, AR, $2,732
8. Joe Deluna, San Antonio, $2,147
9. Kirk McKenzie, Omaha, $1,713
Event 2 • $345 NLHE re-entry
Entries: 477 • Prize Pool: $138,807
1. Thomas Wilkie, Batesville, MS, $29,552
2. Drew Fanning, Madison, WI, $18,272
3. Gene Dudek, Houma, LA, $13,348
4. Steven Giddings, Ruston, LA, $9,896
5. Robert Harwell, Pass Christian, MS, $7,442
6. Freddie Ardoin, Lacassine, LA, $5,677
7. Ken Pikop, Ocean Springs, MS, $4,392
8. Tony Thrash, Sharpsburg, GA, $3,446
9. David Sidler, Atlanta, $2,742
Event 3 • $345 H.O.R.S.E.
Entries: 71 • Prize Pool: $20,661
1. Tim Burt, Grenada, MS, $6,567
2. Christopher Wolfe, Rolla, MO, $4,062
3. David Key, Baton Rouge, LA, $2,674
4. Daniel Barrett, Lisbon, CT, $1,872
5. Thomas Elliott, Carrollton, GA, $1,387
6. Wenzel Werner, Jacksonville, FL, $1,085
7. Benton Blakeman, Daphne, AL, $893
8. Antony Vidmer, Nashville, $771
Event 4 • $555 NLHE
Entries: 109 • Prize Pool: $52,865
1. Kip Jones, Denham Springs, LA, $15,455
2. Danielle Barbee, Atlanta, $9,552
3. Chris Parsons, Mentor, OH, $6,801
4. Kevin Kaylor, Houston, $4,940
5. Casey Andrus, Lafayette, LA, $3,660
6. Kenneth Piel, Robinsonville, MS, $2,763
7. Thomas Doussan, Metairie, LA, $2,125
8. Larry Green, Deer Park, TX, $1,664
9. Grant Elmer, Fayetville, AR, $1,327
Event 5 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 160 • Prize Pool: $46,560
1. Ricky Romero, New Iberia, LA, $12,208
2. Frank Alpandinar, Baton Rouge, LA, $7,544
3. Stanley Seelig, Metairie, LA, $5,430
4. Kenneth Milam, La Place, LA, $3,980
5. Bret Weeks, Batavia, IL, $2,968
6. Edward Hansen, Santa Ana, CA, $2,253
7. William Brock Ii, Pelham, AL, $1,739
8. Will Gould, Houston, $1,364
9. Farris Atta, Decatur, GA, $1,088
Event 6 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 200 • Prize Pool: $56,850
1. Brock Sawyer, Covington, LA, $14,784
2. Mark Berrigan, Tallahassee, FL, $9,131
3. John Fagg, Terre Haute, IN, $6,593
4. Tripp Kirk, Atlanta, $4,842
5. Jesus Cabrera, Atlanta, $3,617
6. Jonathan Taylor, Phil Campbell, AL, $2,749
7. Barron Whipple, Houma, LA, $2,123
8. Matthew Colvin, Dallas, $1,667
9. Christopher Savage, Loxley, AL, $1,330
Event 7 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 197 • Prize Pool: $57,327
1. Caufman Talley, Lafayette, LA, $14,555
2. Lacey Coffey, Houston, $8,990
3. Michael Le, Houston, $6,492
4. John Holley, Destin, FL, $4,768
5. Jae Chung, Atlanta, $3,562
6. Randall Lequire, Franklin, TN, $2,706
7. Mark Rose, Orlando, FL, $2,091
8. Jason Taylor, Loxley, AL, $1,642
9. Thomas Armiger, Auburn, AL, $1,310
Event 8 • $555 NLHE
Entries: 174 • Prize Pool: $84,390
1. Greg Whitworth, Biloxi, MS, $22,421
2. Beverly Cheney, Grandbury, Tx, $13,856
3. Christopher Conrad, Tampa, FL, $9,974
4. Mitch Jones, Kennesaw, GA, $7,310
5. Hoyt Lance, Ringgold, GA, $5,452
6. Brandon Newsome, P. Spring, GA, $4,138
7. Rex Clinkscales, Las Vegas, $3,194
8. Thomas Cronin, Saint Peters, MO, $2,505
9. James Wiggs, Springville, AL, $1,998
| DECEMBER 2011 | anteupmagazine.com
Event 9 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 187 • Prize Pool: $54,417
1. Clinton Landrum, Dickinson, TX, $13,796
2. Rahul Deevara, Atlanta, $8,523
3. Gene Dudek, Houma, LA, $6,154
4. Marvin Mccord, Atlanta, $4,520
5. Michael Sanders, Las Vegas, $3,377
6. Jim Downend, Media, PA, $2,566
7. Eric Wilkinson, New Orleans, $1,982
8. Ocia Langner, Freeport, TX, $1,556
9. Richard Gibson, Sidon, MS, $1,242
Event 10 • $1,080 NLHE
Entries: 124 • Prize Pool: $120,280
1. Charles Pinckernell, Memphis, $33,678
2. Gene Dudek, Houma, LA, $20,816
3. James Barger, Murfreesboro, TN, $15,025
4. Edward Chevallier, Many, LA, $11,041
5. Ezra Mccord, Atlanta, $8,254
6. James Henson, Lake Jackson, TX, $6,275
7. Edward Corrado, Naples, FL, $4,851
8. William Phillips, Metairie, LA, $3,810
9. Caleb Gillespie, Murfreesboro, TN, $3,042
$1,600 Main Event
Entries: 337 • Prize Pool: $490,335
1. Jerry Monroe, Columbus, GA, $112,779
2. William Phillips, Metairie, LA, $69,721
3. Jacob Naquin, Destin, FL, $50,862
4. Chris Parsons, Mentor, OH, $37,726
5. Jeremy Drewery, Arlington, TN, $28,420
6. Ronald Sewell, Shelby, NC, $21,737
7. Michael Nasserazad, Atlanta, $16,868
8. Russell Ivy, Carrizo Springs, TX, $13,278
9. David Williams, Hoover, AL, $10,601
Event 12 • $345 NLHE
Entries: 119 • Prize Pool: $34,629
1. Aaron Brant, Mobile, AL, $10,390
2. Tom Franklin, Gulfport, MS, $6,421
3. Chris Tryba, Las Vegas, $4,572
4. Shawn Steele, Pensacola, FL, $3,321
5. Larry Gurney, Kingston, TN, $2,460
6. Ricky Romero, New Iberia, LA, $1,857
7. John Evans, Granbury, TX, $1,428
8. Richard Harrington, Cameron, LA, $1,119
9. Michael Schneider, Covington, GA, $892