Steve Galey’s plan was to play out the World Series of Poker Circuit National Championship in New Orleans, and then drive to Downstream Casino Resort to play in May’s Four States Poker Championship Ante Up Poker Tour event. But it didn’t go to plan.
Galey was running so badly in the Big Easy that he left early and returned home to Petersburg, Ind. But he still got in his car and drove to Downstream, which turned out to be a great idea as he won the $1K main event and $13,413, plus a championship bracelet from Pro Poker Gear and a personalized AUPT champion’s jacket from Ante Up.
Arriving Friday, the day before the main event, Galey tried to earn a seat through a satellite. Unable to advance, but undeterred, he bought into the event Saturday at full price. Thrilled with his victory, Galey commented that the prize money “sure helped the bankroll” and he’s using it to compete in events at this summer’s WSOP.
Heads-up, Robert Little bluff-shoved with J-10 on a turned board of 7-5-7-4, and Galey called him with his A-6 gutshot, but he didn’t need to hit. The river was a 9, and Galey took the title.
The Four States Poker Championship played out in the pall of the tornado tragedy that struck nearby Moore, Okla., just as the series got under way. Memories of a devastating tornado that struck Joplin, Mo., just across the state line from Downstream, almost to the day two years before remained fresh in players’ and employees’ minds. Downstream, as it did for the Joplin tragedy, provided supplies and donations to those reeling in Moore.
The Four State Poker Championship challenged players in a number of events not normally seen on tournament schedules, including razz and 2-7 triple-draw. While Steve Marlowe and John Blanken shared Downstream’s “Best All Around” award, it was Marlowe who earned the most Ante Up Player of the Year points (378.94) with two victories.
It was the first Ante Up Poker Tour event at Downstream Casino Resort, which recently opened a second opulent hotel tower and features great amenities, like the Red Oak Steakhouse and outdoor resort pool area.
RIVER SPIRIT CASINO: The poker room offers a pair of freerolls through the end of August. The first is a cash-game-hours qualifying freeroll, which will pay $20K with a 50-hours-of-play qualifier. It runs the second Saturday of the next month. The second is a $3,500 freeroll for daily tournament play. Points are awarded for each regular tournament and accumulate each month. The top 30 point-earners qualify for the freeroll on the third Saturday of the next month. The daily tournaments run most mornings and evenings. The room also offers high-hand promotions, including a straight-flush promotion that increases $50 every day and changes suit daily, and a bad-beat jackpot (quads) that was near $143K at press time.
HOLLYWOOD CASINO: The Kansas Speedway poker room runs its $160 deepstack tournament on the second and fourth Sundays of the month. Hollywood is targeting August for its next promotion.
KANSAS STAR CASINO: The $85 NLHE bounty tournament on Tuesday nights pays seven places. Also, look for its popular Thursday night “Cash & Splash” promotion. The $6,800 monthly cash-play freeroll promotion has a 60-hour qualifier. The first 90 qualified players from June will compete July 7.
INDIGO SKY CASINO: This property is on the fall schedule for the Heartland Poker Tour (Oct. 10-21). The no-limit hold’em main event sports a $1,650 buy-in.
CHOCTAW CASINO: The next series at Choctaw begins July 18 and runs through Aug. 4. All events, except satellites, feature guaranteed prize pools. Besides NLHE, other events include H.O.R.S.E. and pot-limit Omaha/8. The $500K four-day main event begins Aug. 2 with a $1,620 buy-in.
WINSTAR WORLD CASINO: Aug. 14 is the start of Winstar’s $4 million guarantee River Poker Series. Event 1 is a $300K guarantee, $340 re-entry tournament ending Aug. 18. The series offers a variety of NLHE events, including bounty, “ultra” (where the surviving 10 percent of the field is paid a percentage of the prize pool), deepstack, “no juice,” and turbo events as well as a pot-limit Omaha. The main event has a $2,500 buy-in and $2.5 million guarantee.
HARD ROCK CASINO: This Tulsa poker room’s main progressive bad-beat jackpot is closing in on $200K, growing at an average clip of $500 per day. The qualifier to hit it is quad eights. The next major tournament event is expected to begin in August.
— Robert Kelly is Ante Up’s Oklahoma-Kansas Ambassador. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Four States/Ante Up Poker Tour winners
Event 1, No-Limit Hold’em: Mesgana Tesfalidet
Event 2, Pot-Limit Omaha: Lonnie “Rob” Jump
Event 3, NLHE: Dana Dhondt
Event 4, Bonnie & Clyde: Robert & Sheila Bryan
Event 5, NLHE: Michael Kennedy
Event 6, Ante Only: Jeri Young
Event 7, Razz: Bobby Sadler
Event 8, Raise or Fold: Randy Murfin
Event 9, H.O.R.S.E.: Trent Elyler
Event 10, 2-7 Triple Draw: Steve Marlowe
Event 11, Stud: Steve Marlowe
Event 12, NLHE-PLHE: Jerry Morris
Event 13, Omaha/8: John Blanken
Event 14, Main Event: Steve Galey
AUPT WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP: The Ante Up Poker Tour visits the Dominican Republic July 28-Aug. 3 for its AUPT World Championship at the Hard Rock Punta Cana. For more details, go to anteupmagazine.com/worldchampi onship