EPT11 Deauville: Jan Heitmann leads the way at the mid-point of Day 1B

Here's the least surprising news from any poker tournament ever: Day 1B of EPT11 Deauville is bigger than Day 1A.

As players prepare for the final level before the dinner break, the tournament information board shows 380 players registered for the day. With 199 having anted up yesterday, the total field is still a little short of 600, but at €5,000 a pop, there will still be plenty to play for.

At time of writing, it seems that Jan Heitmann in the man with the biggest stack in the room, a glorious state of affairs for fans of his Twitter account. The Team PokerStars Pro kicked off on the "Erste Hand Small gegen Big Blind Top Paar in Set gelaufen" and later played another pot "mit Top set".

There was then something involving an "Overpaar" and Heitmann is up to more than 85,000. Poker ist ganz einfach!

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Jan Heitmann: Fast starter

Heitmann leads a healthy smattering of some of the European game's big names. Bertrand Grospellier is playing today, and he has built his stack to around the 50,000 mark. Michael Tureniec, Vojcech Ruzicka and Fabrice Soullier have something similar.

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The most familiar peroxide-haired Frenchman in Deauville

Victoria Coren-Mitchell has returned to the EPT for the first time in a while -- drawn as ever by the charms of northern France -- and there are fellow champions scattered all around. Kevin MacPhee is one of a handful of Americans; Antonio Buonanno has headed over from Italy; Davidi Kitai continues his search for a second title, and Sotirios Koutoupas is here to defend the crown he won last year.

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Sotirios Koutoupas: Defending champ

None of the aforementioned are troubling the top of the leader board at time of writing, but crucially none of them have been eliminated either. They have middling stacks, which is just fine at such an early stage.

It's more than can be said for Sofia Lovgren, Michiel Brummelhuis, Bruno Fitoussi and Oleksii Khoroshenin. They lead the known faces on the rail. There's a long way to go in this one -- registration isn't even closed yet -- but it'll be steady progress into their gang over the next few days.

Coverage from the Main Event of EPT Deauville is on the Main Event page. Check out all the action from around the festival on the main festival page.

Howard Swains
@howardswains in Main Event