Records are made to be broken, and the players who entered Day 1b of European Poker Tour Barcelona Main Event were knee-deep in shattered vinyl. Over 1,000 players entered the final starting day of this event, the 100th EPT event ever held, and not a table in the tournament area was spared with an empty seat for much of the day.
Adding the 1,010 runners to the 475 who played yesterday, meant the field grew to 1,485 at the completion of play last night. With registration open until the start of play on Day 2, things could get even larger. The tournament already contains a bigger field than any EPT event on European soil and overall is currently only eclipsed by the PokerStars Carribean Adventure main events in Season 6 and Season 7, which drew 1,529 and 1,560 runners, respectively. Even if the final number fails to beat these, it'll still be the third biggest tournament in the EPT's 10-year history.
Of course, the question you should be asking is who is currently leading this mammoth field? Well, after eight 75-minute levels, it is Jose Lamarca who is top of the pile at this point in time. Capa, who qualified through a live satellite, finished the day delighted with 193,300 in chips, which put him as the chip leader not just of Day 1b, but overall as well, pushing Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi into second.
Click here to read the Day 1a recap to see just how Mizrachi built his chip lead and others who advanced from that flight as well.
With a field of this size, there were numerous Team PokerStars Pros who made it through the day with sizeable stacks and they were led by Theo Jorgensen, who finished up with 116,500 thanks in part to a huge pot where he made a full house at the same time another player made trips. Others to make it through included Jake Cody (57,900), Ivan Demidov (52,900), Marcin Horecki (47,300) Joao Nunes (34,900), Liv Boeree (27,400), Andre Akkari (20,100), and Daniel Negreanu (18,600).
Some of the other Team PokerStars didn't fair so well and were eliminated today. Those included Jason Mercier, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, Fatima Moreira de Melo, Luca Pagano, George Danzer, and Friend of PokerStars Natalie Hof. Danzer, currently looking to secure the World Series of Poker Player of the Year title, suffered from a mistimed squeeze play when he pushed all in with the but ran into the and the — running into the "top of their ranges."
Other players to make it through included Timur Margolin (166,175), Timo Pfutzenreuter (163,600), Vojech Ruzicka (155,300), Davidi Kitai (93,200), Mike McDonald (76,800), David Peters (75,800), Dan Smith (45,600), Pius Heinz (21,500), and Sofia Lovgren (16,200).
The long list of casualties included November Niners, WSOP Europe champions, and former EPT winners, as Jorryt van Hoof, Annette Obrestad, Michael Tureniec, Zimnan Ziyard, Pieter de Korver, and Steve O'Dwyer were all felled during the day.
On Saturday we believe there will be around a thousand players returning for Day 2, how the EPT plans to accommodate such a large remaining field is open to debate, but no doubt they'll be pulling out all the stops to make sure everyone is able to fit in for what should be an incredibly fast and hectic day.
The PokerNews Live Reporting Team will be back from 12 p.m. local time Saturday as this huge tournament continues, so be sure to tune back in then for more coverage.
In the meantime, check out the following video of Negreanu discussing the recent debate he's been involved in as to whether or not he'd be able to win playing $25/$50 no-limit hold'em cash games online: