There were ten World Series of Poker bracelets among the nine players that began the final table of Event #34, $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha w/Rebuys. By the end of the fast-paced final table, one more was added to the total, but the bracelets were all still around the wrists of two players. Ted Forrest finished the day with the same five bracelets he started with, but Layne 'Back to Back' Flack picked up his first bracelet in five years when he took over the chip lead early at the final table and never looked back in a dominating performance that saw him take down his sixth WSOP bracelet and the $577,725 first place prize. Pretty good results for a guy who had so many rebuys that he had to finish 12th or better just to break even!
The chip stacks and seating assignments looked like this as Kyle Kloeckner took the chip lead into the final table -
Seat 1: Frank Vizza (Cold Spring Harbor, New York) — 378,000
Seat 2: Dario Alioto (Palermo, Italy) — 659,000
Seat 3: Tim West (Los Altos, California) — 187,000
Seat 4: Daniel Makowsky (Zurich, Switzerland) — 493,000
Seat 5: Kyle Kloeckner (St. Louis, Missouri) — 845,000
Seat 6: Jacobo Fernandez (Hollywood, Florida) — 348,000
Seat 7: Layne Flack (Las Vegas, Nevada) — 601,000
Seat 8: Michael Guzzardi (Melbourne, Australia) — 751,000
Seat 9: Ted Forrest (Las Vegas, Nevada) — 757,000
Frank Vizza was the chip leader at the end of Day 1, and he rode his big stack all the way to the final table. Vizza couldn't get anything going on Day 3, and went to the rail about an hour after play began. Vizza called a preflop raise from Dario Alioto to see a flop of . Vizza shoved all in on the flop with for the baby flush, and Alioto called with . Alioto's flush was better, and Vizza got no help on the turn or river to bust in ninth place ($54,160).
The chip lead changed hands almost minute by minute for the first couple of hours, but finally Layne Flack pushed Kyle Kloeckner off a big pot to take the lead. Once he captured the lead solidly, Flack never looked back en route to the bracelet.
Tim West put the last of his chips in the middle preflop when he went over the top of Dario Alioto's preflop raise. Alioto called with , and made trips on the flop. West's needed help, and he got none on the turn and river as the board ran out . West picked up $72,213 for his eighth-place finish.
Michael Guzzardi made the final table in his first major live tourney, and then got the bad beat of being seated between Ted Forrest and Layne Flack. The young T6 Poker qualifier found himself stuck between two of the toughest tournament pros in the world, but managed a very respectable seventh-place finish ($90,267) in his inaugural outing. Guzzardi raised preflop with , and Layne Flack came along to see a flop of . The rest of Guzzardi's chips went in on the flop, and Flack called with . Flack turned his flush when the landed, leaving Guzzardi drawing dead. The meaningless came on the river, and Guzzardi was busted.
Kyle Kloeckner came into the final table with the chip lead, but headed to the rail in sixth in a classic Omaha cooler – boat over boat. Kloeckner, Layne Flack and Daniel Makowsky all saw a rare cheap flop of . After action checked around on the flop, Flack led out on the turn. Makowsky folded, and Kloeckner check-raised all in. Flack quickly called with for sixes full of deuces, and Kloeckner was in trouble with for deuces full of Kings. The on the river changed nothing, and Kloeckner headed to the rail in sixth place ($144,427).
Ted Forrest brought half the total bracelets to the final table, with five, but left in fifth place ($144,427) with no new jewelry. Forrest raised preflop with , and found two callers in Daniel Makowsky and Jacobo Fernandez. The flop came down , and Makowsky led out with a pot-sized bet. Fernandez folded, and Forrest put his last few chips in the pot. Makowsky had flopped top set with , and Forrest was drawing thin. The on the turn brought no help, and the on the river sent Forrest to the rail.
Dario Alioto was the next to fall when Layne Flack took him out in fourth place ($180,534). Flack raised preflop, and Alioto made the call with . Alioto led out when the flop came down , giving him an open-ended straight draw and the flush draw. Flack raised with for the overpair and the same straight draw, and Alioto called all in. The turn and river came down , and Alioto was eliminated in fourth place as Layne Flack laid claim to a huge chip lead.
Jacobo Fernandez made his fifth cash of the 2008 WSOP in Event #34, and by making the final table vaulted to the top of the Player of the Year standings. Fernandez' great run ended in third place ($222,659) when he tangled with the unstoppable Layne Flack for the final time. Fernandez got heads-up with Flack preflop, and the board came down . Flack fired out a pot-sized bet, and Fernandez raised all in. Flack called with for the flopped full house. Fernandez was looking for an ace or a ten to survive, and caught neither as the turn and river came down . Fernandez headed to the rail as Flack took a 6:1 chip lead into heads-up play.
Layne Flack — 4,306,000
Daniel Makowsky — 730,000
It only took a few minutes for Layne Flack to put the cherry on top of his sundae and eliminate Daniel Makowsky in second place ($355,050) for his sixth WSOP bracelet. All the chip went in preflop as Flack held . Most of Makowsky's cards were live with . The flop came down , and Makowsky picked up diamond draw. The was no help to either player, as Flack's kings were still ahead. Flack made a set on the river when the landed, and he picked up his sixth WSOP title and the $577,725 first prize.
Flack took a moment after the event to remark on his feelings, saying
"It's been five years, I want to savor it a little bit." Flack's last bracelet came in 2003, when he earned the nickname "Back to Back" for picking up two bracelets in two preliminary events. After his dominating showing in Event #34, he can savor bracelet #6 for quite some time.