Record-Breaking Seniors Could Push WSOP Main Event to New Heights

June 21st, 2017 | by Kaycee James

The Seniors event at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) has not only crowned a winner in recent days but broken another record.

Frank Maggio WSOP.

Frank Maggio wins a record-breaking WSOP Seniors event to take home $617,303. (Image: WSOP)

2017 seems to be the year of record-breaking No Limit Hold’em fields and the Seniors event has continued that trend. Open to all players aged 50+ and kicking off on June 16, the $1,000 tournament attracted a mix of pros, novices and qualifiers for three days of action.

By the time the registration desks closed, 5,389 players had paid the entrance fee, which helped generate a prizepool worth $4,850,100. On top of beating 2016’s total (a then record) by nearly 1,000 players (4,499), the organizers were forced to add a fourth day of play due to the number of players still left on Day 3.

Maggio Takes Home Record Prize

The total prizepool helped create a winner’s prize worth $617,303 which was larger than 58 of 2016’s 69 bracelet events. Eventually, when the chips were down, America’s Frank Maggio took down the tournament and his first WSOP bracelet after defeating William Murray heads-up.

Despite having seven previous cashes at the WSOP, Illinois’s Maggio makes the annual trip to Las Vegas to play in the Seniors event. Prior to banking $617,303, his best previous finish in the event was 181st back in 2014.

While Maggio will be celebrating a milestone in his poker career, the WSOP’s organizers will be looking back on the Seniors event as another highlight. With the Millionaire Maker already breaking last year’s record, the significant jump in entries for the Seniors event is certainly a positive sign ahead of the $10,000 Main Event.

Signs Point to a Major Main Event

Although it’s impossible to equate success in one event to another, the No Limit Hold’em economy is clearly booming this year and that should help the Big Dance.

While few would expect this year’s WSOP Main Event to top the record set in 2006 when 8,773 players anted-up, it could top 2016’s 6,737 runners.

Last year’s total was the fifth largest Main Event turnout ever and followed record-breaking Millionaire Maker and Seniors events. Repeating this trend in 2017 would not only see the Main Event approach its best, but help create a prizepool worth more than $63 million.

For now, however, Frank Maggio can celebrate coming out on top in the largest ever WSOP Seniors event.

WSOP $1,000 Seniors Event Result

1. Frank Maggio – $617,303

2. William Murray – $381,233

3. Dieter Dechant – $281,691

4. Mark Lillge – $209,715

5. Anthony Licastro – $157,321

6. Gina Bacon – $118,923

7. Lewis LeClair – $90,594

8. Paul Spitzberg – $69,552

9. Dan Heimiller – $53,817


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