Blair Hinkle Defends Title and Wins Third WSOP Circuit Council Bluffs Main Event

Blair Hinkle

Next season, the World Series of Poker Circuit should rename the Horseshoe Council Bluffs Main Event the "Blair Hinkle Invitational." For the third time in four years, Blair Hinkle emerged victorious in the Main Event, this time taking home $90,770 in first-place prize money.

Last season, Hinkle won the WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Council Bluffs Main Event to the tune of $121,177. Two seasons before that, he won the same title for $88,555. Needless to say, Hinkle owns the Horseshoe Council Bluffs stop.

Final Table Results

1Blair Hinkle$90,770*
2Justin Bond$56,086
3Kenneth Douglas$40,522
4Paul Ewen$29,822
5Quang Pham$22,341
6Daniel Carson$17,024
7Charles "Woody" Moore$13,190
8Justin Truesdell$10,385
9John Holley$8,307

*Includes entry into May's WSOP Circuit National Championship.

This season's WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Council Bluffs Main Event attracted 247 entries and generated a prize pool of $370,500. The top 27 spots were set to be paid, and it was Hinkle who eliminated the bubble boy in 28th place to send everyone into the money.

Some big WSOP Circuit names made it into the money, including Jeff Fielder (23rd - $3,420), Jeff Banghart (15th - $5,565), Bernard Lee (12th - $6,747), and Alex Masek (10th - $6,747), but unfortunately none of them were able to reach the final table. Masek was the last player eliminated on Day 2, sending the final nine competitors into Day 3 with Kenneth Douglas narrowly edging out Hinkle for the chip lead.

On the third and final day of play, John Holley was busted first from the final table. He was followed out the door by former WSOP Circuit Harrah's New Orleans Main Event champion Justin Truesdell and former WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Southern Indiana Main Event winner Charles "Woody" Moore.

From there, Daniel Carson fell in sixth place, Quang Pham hit the rail in fifth, Paul Ewen was bounced in fourth, and Douglas finished in third to set up the heads-up match between Hinkle and Justin Bond. At the start of the duel, Bond had the lead with 3.55 million in chips to Hinkle's 1.4 million.

It didn't take long for Hinkle to pull closer and work his way into the lead, but Bond fought back and regained the chip lead during Level 27 with the blinds at 20,000/40,000/5,000.

Hinkle spent time below 1 million in chips, then doubled, then got knocked back down to six figures, then doubled again. After doubling up in Level 29 with the blinds at 30,000/60,000/5,000, Hinkle found a second double shortly thereafter before the blinds ticked up. It was this second double that put him into the lead for good.

Then, after the blinds rolled over into Level 30 with the stakes at 40,000/80,000/10,000, Hinkle finished off Bond.

According to the WSOP Circuit live blog, on the final hand Bond limped in from the button, and Hinkle raised all in from the big blind. Bond called off for his last 1.4 million with the {a-Clubs}{8-Hearts}, but it was Hinkle's {7-Hearts}{7-Clubs} that had the slight edge. After the board ran out {k-Spades}{3-Clubs}{3-Hearts}{4-Diamonds}{5-Clubs}, Hinkle had sealed the deal and locked up his third Horseshoe Council Bluffs Main Event title.

Bond earned $56,086 for his runner-up performance.

Hinkle's victory marked the first time a WSOP Circuit champion had gone on to successfully defend his title. It also marked the first time a player was able to win the same event for the third time. These are two records Hinkle now holds, along with pocketing $90,770 in prize money and an entry into the WSOP Circuit's season-ending National Championship coming up in May.

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