Event 12 saw the first purely Limit Hold'em event of the 2008 World Series of Poker, the $1,500 Limit Event. 880 players turned out for the event, down slightly from the 910 players in 2007, but the field was chock full of stars. On hand were WSOP bracelet winners Erick Lindgren, Phil Hellmuth, Chris Ferguson, Humberto Brenes and 2007 WSOP Player of the Year Tom Schneider. Also in the field were notables such as Shannon Elizabeth, Terrence Chan, Shane "Shaniac" Schleger and Shaun Deeb.
The deliberate pace of the limit structure kept the bustouts to a minimum early in Day 1, but as the limits grew higher, the eliminations came at a faster pace. Kenna James was one of the early eliminations, as was Justin "ZeeJustin" Bonomo. Phil Hellmuth also made an early exit from Event 12 when his aces were cracked by an opponent's turned two pair, and then the last few of his chips went in good with pocket tens against As-10d, but an ace on the river sent the 11-time WSOP bracelet winner home early.
As Day 1 wore on, the list of notable eliminations grew ever longer. Chris "Jesus" Ferguson went to the rail when he found himself pot committed with on a board of . Chris Podlewski called with , and when another ten came on the river, Ferguson was eliminated. Other notable eliminations in the evening of Event 12 included Humberto Brenes, J.C. Tran, Shaun Deeb and Daniel Negreanu. Negreanu busted at the hands of Tony Licastro, who limped into the pot with Negreanu to see a flop of . Negreanu raised the first bet, as did Licastro. The came on the board, and Licastro led out. Negreanu called, and then called again when Licastro led out at the river with . Negreanu showed , and headed home until his next event.
Eric Pratt managed to take over the chip lead as Day 1 drew to a close, but there are several high-powered poker pros hot on his heels. Notable players from the 179 that remained at the end of Day 1 included Terrence Chan, Marcel Luske, Erick Lindgren and Tom Schneider. The top ten chip counts looked like this to end Day 1:
Eric Pratt 40,700
Eric Crain 38,400
Jimmy Shultz 38,300
Roy Thung 35,800
Joseph Sanders 35,800
Marco Traniello 34,400
Vinny Vinh 30,700
Gerald Schaffner 30,600
Ali Eslami 30,300
David Rood 29,500
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