The Deauville leg of the Season 11 European Poker Tour sponsored by PokerStars.fr continued Monday with the second Day 1 flight, and many of the big names on the circuit participated in what would eventually be a total of 390 entrants. After eight levels of play it was Guillaume Darcourt from France who bested the remaining 227 players with 167,800 chips.
Alessandro Valli from Italy finished the day in second place with 154,800, closely followed by Andrius Bielskis with 150,200. Team PokerStars Pro Jan Heitmann from Germany bagged up a top 10 stack of 126,100 chips.
There were several former EPT Main Event winners competing on Day 1b including four former Deauville champions. Defending champion Sotirios Koutoupas just failed to make it through when he ran pocket threes into kings in the last level. Remi Castaignon, who won EPT Deaville in 2013, and Lucien Cohen, who won in 2011, ended up on the same table towards the end of play and both managed to bag up chips with 91,800 and 85,600, respectively. Jake Cody entered after the dinner break and ran up that stack to 53,000 chips in the last two levels.
Last season’s EPT Grand Final winner Sylvain Loosli was eliminated shortly before the end of Level 8 when he shoved his short stack holding but ran into and couldn’t improve. Vicky Coren-Mitchell, the only two-time EPT winner, managed to hold on with 22,200 when the day closed.
2008 PCA Main Event champion and Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier outshined the other previous champions, putting in a strong performance by finishing the day on 123,500. Grospellier proved a master of extracting maximum value several times when he flopped a big hand with an unexpected holding against opponents with strong hands, and he would do the same when he finally cracked the 100k mark. Holding on the turn of a board reading Grospellier bet 6,600 into a pot of 12,000 and picked up one caller in Stephan Faig. The hit the river and a bet of 9,200 again got called before Faig’s hand hit the muck.
Some other notables who navigated the Day 1b minefield include Sergio Aido (97,600), Ilan Boujenah (90,900), Michael Tureniec (90,600), Thomas Butzhammer (87,400), Kevin MacPhee (86,300), Govert Metaal (81,600), Marcin Wydrowski (79,500), PokerStars Team Online's Gabriel Nassif (74,700), PokerStars Team Pro Julien Brecard (61,800) and Vladimir Troyanovskiy (54,300).
While those players can look forward to another day in the Main Event with their dreams of a big pay-day still alive, some of those who failed to make it through and go home empty handed include Sofia Lovgren, Georgios Karakousis, Jean-Noel Thorel, Alex Goulder, Davidi Kitai and Artem Litvinov.
Day 1a saw Nathan Gozlan top the leaderboard with 148,500 heading a field of 199, and with the board showing 392 entrants Monday it created a total of 591 entrants. Gozlan will return second in chips, giving France the top two spots. Registration remains open until the start of Day 2, but that number still represents a slight downward trend since the peak of 2011 when 891 players entered.
Action resumes Tuesay at 12 p.m. local time when the two starting flights will combine and the remaining 335 players continue the battle it out to be crowned EPT Deauville Champion 2015. The PokerNews reporting team will be there to bring you all the live updates from the tournament floor as well as exclusive videos and interviews from Remko Rinkema and details on the feature table live stream.