The WPT500 tournament is set for a return to Las Vegas this summer.
The popular reasonably-priced World Poker Tour stop will hit the ARIA resort over the July 4 weekend while thousands of poker players are busying themselves with the WSOP Main Event half a mile down the road at the Rio.
WPT’s rival event, the partypoker presents: WPT500 at ARIA, to give it its typically full WPT title,Â carries a $2 million guarantee and an affordable buy-in of $500+65. The $2 million prizepool sees a doubling of the same pool from last year.
In 2014, 3,599 entries anted up to compete. This time around, there will be 10 starting flights (with the first one kicking off May 31) and a dedicated final day planned for July 6.
A biotech sales rep from LA took down last year’s WPT500 for a cool $260,000 first prize. The cream rose to the top at the final table, with seasoned pros Scott Clements and 2009 WPT World Championship finalist Christian Harder among the last 9.
“After experiencing great success last summer, we are proud to announce our return to Las Vegas for the partypoker presents: WPT500 at ARIA in Las Vegas,” said Adam Pliska, WPT president.
“In order to create more value for the thousands of players who will flock to Sin City in the coming months, we have doubled the previous guarantee and scheduled more starting flights across three different weekends.”
In addition, the WPT head honcho said, at least one package every day will be awarded during May on the recreational wing of the World Poker Tour, ClubWPT.com.
Jeffrey Haas, director of US for WPT owners, bwin.party, said:
“Hundreds of online qualifiers from around the world are expected to travel to Las Vegas and participate in partypoker presents: WPT500 at ARIA, including players in New Jersey, the largest regulated market in the United States.
“These players will have an opportunity to turn a very small buy-in into a massive six-figure prize, while also enjoying the many first-class amenities that ARIA has to offer.”
There’s no doubt that 2015 is already gearing up to be a year for the casual player. Late last year the World Series of Poker organizers announced plans for a new addition to the summer schedule: the ‘Colossus’.
Book-ending the WSOP on the other end of the schedule, Event #5 of the series sees a No Limit Hold’em event with four starting flights and a guaranteed prizepool of $5 million.
WSOP organizers are hoping to attract thousands of runners and create the biggest live poker tournament ever seen.
The Colossus takes place May 29-June 2 at the Rio.