World Series of Poker Europe France Poker Series Snowfest Day 1a: Beker Leads, de Meulder in Second FPS Snowfest

The France Poker Series Snowfest Evian kicked off on Thursday on the shores of Lake Geneva near Switzerland. A field of 103 showed up for Day 1a, to participate in the €1,100 buy-in Main Event on the third stop of the FPS live circuit. By the end of the day, Nicolas Beker had amassed 196,400 in chips and leads the 42 players who survived Day 1a.

A total of 33 PokerStars qualifiers battled during the 11 levels on Day 1a, including French online phenoms Fabrice "Poloris" Gouget (27,900) and Anthony "Nartoof" Hnatow (86,700). Brothers, and Team Pokerstars Pros Matthias and Christophe De Meulder were also in attendance. Christophe was eliminated during the day, but Matthias finished second in chips with 186,800.

Several other notables have made good use of their 30,000 starting stack, including Team PokerStars Pro Julien Brecard who bagged up 84,600 chips. Thibaud "Thibavol" Guenegou also had a good day on the felt, and managed to crack aces with a flopped set of kings on the very last hand. He bagged and tagged 126,100 in chips to rise up to the top of chip counts.

End of Day 1a Top 10 Chip Counts

PlayerChip Counts
Nicolas Beker196,400
Matthias De Meulder186,800
Paul Testud129,100
Thibaud Guenegou126,100
Yannis Lagier94,300
Anthony Hnatow86,700
Anthony Caillot85,000
Julien Brecard84,600
Gilles Mellet83,900
Nicholas Farnborough80,200

Day 1b will be the biggest of the two starting days, featuring a star-studded field including triple-crown recipient and Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, national celebrities such as Guillaume Darcourt and Fabrice Soulier, and Ukrainian top-player Eugene Katchalov. All will be in action on Friday at 1330 CET (0530 PST) and you can find all the updates on

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