ESPT6 Barcelona: Numbers grow, words fail as Estrellas Day 1B begins

Poker is a game that uniquely involves both narratives populated with characters and plots and all sorts of statistics and data. Words generally work best when it comes to conveying the former, while numbers dominate the latter.

As we contemplate the coming day of poker today and think specifically about the numbers, words fail us. We'll try to explain.

The European Poker Tour Barcelona festival's second full day of events has begun, with six different tournaments in action today. It's a two-week long, 71-event series, so that figure alone provokes a bit of awe considering the magnitude of the proceedings.

Our focus again today will be on the €1K Estrellas Main Event, for which the second of three Day 1 flights began just a moments ago at 12 noon. That's the event where the numbers are sincerely starting to challenge our ability to come up with appropriate descriptions of what is happening.

You might recall how last year, Season 11 of the EPT kicked off similarly with a record-breaking Estrellas Barcelona Main Event. With 2,560 players taking part in that one -- also a €1K, and also with three Day 1 flights -- it marked the largest ever freezeout tournament in EPT history.

Yesterday we watched 592 players turn out for Day 1A. That group played down to 166 with Spain's Fernando Heredia ending the night having bagged the most after spinning the starting stack of 25,000 up to 366,200 by night's end.

ESPT_Barcelona-99_Fernando Heredia.jpg

Day 1A leader Fernando Heredia

On the surface, 592 players maybe didn't seem all that notable. But then we remembered last year's totals for each of the Day 1 flights.

A year ago there were 438 players on Day 1A of the Estrellas Barcelona Main Event. That means yesterday's total marks a better than 35% increase (!). Day 1B then drew 872 and Day 1C another 1,250 to reach that 2,560 total.

They've only just started playing hands here at the start of the second Day 1 flight, and already there are 904 players in their seats with four full levels of late registration to go. So Day 1B will be exceeding last year's Day 1B, and it's anyone's guess what's to come for tomorrow's Day 1C.

The numbers are starting to become indescribable, in other words.

We'll keep an eye on the growing field and start letting you know who sits among them shortly. We'll also catch you up on last night's side event winners, as more silver spade trophies were claimed during the wee hours.

Right now, though, before get started, we're going to look for a dictionary. And a calculator.


Massive, colossal, prodigious, gigantic...

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Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in Barcelona