The 10th Annual European Poker Awards took place on Sunday night at the Queenie Club in Paris, a stone’s throw away from its previous home of the Aviation Club. The awards have gotten bigger every year; hence the need for a new venue, but no expense was spared at the plush VIP awards ceremony, which featured some of the cream of European poker.
Rookie of the Year – Jake Cody
The U.K.’s Jake Cody was the standout winner in this category, a complete unknown 12 months ago, he captured EPT Deauville and WPT London in seven months. If winning over $1.6 million in those two tournaments alone wasn’t enough, he is one of the few players to take down two separate majors in one year. Rather fittingly, he wasn’t in attendance because he was winning the PokerStars UK & Ireland Poker Tour High Rollers Event in Nottingham at the time, winning himself three titles in a 24 hours to add to his already heaving trophy cabinet.
Internet Player of the Year – Andreas Torbergsen
It was a truly difficult category to judge because every nominee was shortlisted for different achievements relatively, the judges went for the player who won the most money. Andreas Torbergsen won nearly $4 million in 2010. Known as Skjervøy online, the Cardrunners coach beat all comers toward the end of the year to book the biggest winning year of any online player in Europe.
Outstanding tournament performance – James Bord
The WSOPE champion James Bord fought off stiff competition from Jake Cody, Liv Boeree and November Niner Fillipo Candio among others to claim this prize. The WSOPE is considered one of the toughest tournaments on the planet, hence the nomination, and Bord took the opportunity to dedicate his award to friend Sam Trickett (Who had just made the WPT Paris final table no less), calling him the best in the world.
Europe’s Leading Lady – Liv Boeree
EPT San Remo was the largest ever open event won by a female player last year, which put recent Sunday Warm-Up winner Liv Boeree in pole position to win this. It seemed the judges agreed, too, that beating 1,240 other players made her the standout female player in Europe last year. Unfortunately, Liv wasn’t available to accept her award because she was attending the record-breaking PokerStars UK & Ireland Poker Tour event in Nottingham.
Poker staff person of the year – Gerard Serra Retamero, TK Events
The award designed to highlight the efforts of some of the backroom staff that have made poker better was won by Gerard Serra Retamero of TK Events, fighting off competition from his own colleague and legendary tournament director Thomas Kremser. Gerard was heralded as one of the hardest working people on the EPT tour and played a pivotal role in the success of the Spanish Poker Tour. The ecstatic winner thanked his mentor Kremser and his wife upon collecting his well-deserved award.
Rob Gardner Memorial Award for the Poker Personality of 2010 – Tony G
Love him or hate him, there is no denying that PokerNews founder Tony G has one hell of a personality. Tony had a very busy 2010 that saw him do lots of work for charity, trying to unmask Isildur1, bidding on Peter Eastgate's bracelet, playing some of the most controversial TV hands of the year, trying to get a dog into the Aussie Millions, and much, much more. Poker without Tony G would be boring, and now he has an award to prove it.
Player of the Year – Jake Cody
It’s not very often the rookie of the year is also crowned player of the year, but not many players can boast as good a year as Jake Cody. A WPT & EPT title and over $1.6 million in winnings is not just a great debut year, it’s an amazing year by anyone’s standards.
Lifetime achievement award – Nic Szeremeta
This was the first time a poker media ambassador won this award instead of a player, but the standing ovation given for PokerEuropa editor Nic Szeremeta proved it was well-deserved. Nic was quite embarrassed by his victory, given that he is one of the organizers of this event and has played a pivotal role in its success. Nic is the former secretary of the European Poker Players Association, former editor of Poker Europa magazine, a co-creator or the World Heads-Up Poker Championships, and perhaps most notably the creator of legendary poker show Late Night Poker.
After his acceptance, Tony G felt compelled to rush onto stage to publicly thank Nic, saying that without people like him, many of us would not have a jobs.
Another great night and a great year for European poker, the party went on until the early hours and you can catch some of the action thanks to our very own Gloria Balding who grabbed a few words with some of the winners.
You can chat with, play with and bust 888 Poker Pro Leo Margets in our $5,000 Leo Margets Freerolls, exclusive to PokerNews.