After a successful first run last October, the PokerStars UK and Ireland Poker Tour (UKIPT) will return to the Isle of Man later this year. The 2014 poker festival will run from Oct. 2 through 6 and will overlap with the PokerStars Isle of Man International Chess Tournament.
The UKIPT Isle of Man Main Event will be a £770 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournament held at the Villa Marina venue, located on the sea front promenade in the capital Douglas. Players from all over the region are expected to make the trip and compete for a share of the £350,000 guaranteed prize pool.
PokerStars proudly hosted a tournament in its own backyard for the first time last year. Duncan McLellan was crowned the first ever UKIPT Isle of Man champion, winning £94,090 after he beat Team PokerStars SportStar Fatima Moreira de Melo in a short heads-up battle. The event attracted a total of 379 players and saw names like Daniel Negreanu, David Williams, Vanessa Rousso and Jason Mercier make their UKIPT debut at the Villa Marina.
PokerNews provided live coverage of the tournament and even got an exclusive look inside the PokerStars data center.
"I’m proud to say that the first UKIPT event on the Isle of Man was a big success in 2013," said Mark Scheinberg, CEO of the Rational Group, the parent company of PokerStars. "The atmosphere was very social and it was obvious that the players were really enjoying themselves."
Added Isle of Man Chief Minister Alan Bell, "I welcome the news that PokerStars’ UKIPT Isle of Man event is coming to the Isle of Man again. The 2013 event brought the Isle of Man to the attention of a brand new audience and generated well over 1000 bed nights for our local hotels. This announcement also helps to reinforce further the Isle of Man’s position as a center of excellence for the e-Gaming industry and I’m confident that this year’s event will prove to be just as successful."
The PokerStars Isle of Man International Chess tournament will run from Oct. 4 through 12, creating a true mind sports festival in the Isle of Man in October. According to chess tournament organizers Alan Ormsby and Brian Woodard, the event could be one of the biggest open chess tournaments to be held in the United Kingdom or Ireland this year.
Photo credit: Jim Linwood