EPT8 Deauville: Numbers add up and up in Normandy

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As we alluded at the start of today's coverage, Deauville isn't exactly easy to get to. Yet it has consistently proven to be one of the most popular destinations for players on the European Poker Tour.

Take this standard itinerary.

A flight from around anywhere in the world will land you at Paris at Charles de Gaulle airport. From there it's a RER train into Gare du Nord in Paris, before crossing town either by Metro or taxi to Paris St Lazare, for your train to Deauville. No wait, not Deauville, to Trouville, and you have to change at Lisieux. On arrival in Trouville you'll need a taxi, or be prepared for a long walk with a map, into Deauville. And it was minus two degrees in town last night.

But a look at the numbers - and poker is all math - accounts for the effort. Since it's reinstatement on the European Poker Tour after a two season hiatus owing to fluctuations in the French gaming law, Deauville has proven a consistent draw, boasting increased prize pools and pay-outs year on year. We know this because we actually did the adding up on the back of an empty packet of Gitannes.

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Bumping up the prize pool: chips all-in in Deauville

Taking the EPT averages for first place and for prize pool in general, Deauville has exceeded both in the past two seasons (and may well make it a third season when numbers become official at about this time tomorrow).

In season six, the year of Jake Cody's arrival, the Englishman walked away with €847,000, some €66,000 above the EPT average first prize that season (€781,178 - excluding the PCA). That amount was fourth biggest behind the San Remo-Grand Final double header, Berlin and Barcelona, which paid €850,000 (€3,000 more) for first place. To be fair though Barcelona boasts a beach that's warm.

In terms of the total prize pool that was €3,686,400, some €214,000 more than the average. It was a similar story in season seven, only more so.

When Lucien Cohen went nuts, screamed at the top of his voice, taking down the Deauville title, he walked away with €880,000, some €134,000 more than the season average (€746,975 - again excluding the PCA) and behind only London and the San Remo-Grand Final double header for size. The same went for the prize pool of €3,440,473 which was €600,000 more than the average prize pool.

Suddenly the train doesn't sound so bad; and the trip across rush hour Paris? What a great time to sit in traffic and see the sights. So far 345 players who started today thought the same. Far more will be undergoing that same journey today in order to agree tomorrow.