LAPT Florianopolis: Levels 3 and 4 updates (100-200 blinds)


4.10pm: Break time
That's the end of the level. Players are now on the second break of the day. For the latest approximate chip counts go to the chip count page.

4pm: Andre a Super Sa
Max Goncalvez was raising, making it 800 pre-flop. He got callers in three spots, including Andre Sa and Gorge Arias. Goncalvez has a big grin on his face, a big toothy smile, as they went to the 4♥9♦2♠ flop.

Here Goncalvez bet 1,000, a neat yellow chip flipped into the middle. Again Sa called, Arias getting out of the way. Another big grin for Goncalvez as they went to the turn card Q♥.

Another one chip, 1k bet from Goncalvez, and again Sa was waiting, this time raising to 4,000. It was just Sa and Goncalvez now; the young Sa and the older Goncalvez with the windswept grey hair. A call and a T♦ river card.

Now Goncalvez was checking. On cue Sa raised all-in, easily covering Goncalvez, who was no longer smiling. Instead he was thinking, making a surrender gesture with his hand and holding his cards up to make a wall. Behind the wall his last 9,000 chips.

Suddenly, as if his hands had got tired of waiting, he called, his chips fanning out on the table. It marked the end of his tournament. Sa turned over 9♣9♥ for a set. Goncalvez showed K♣Q♣ but was clinging onto Gualter Salles next to him, not for support, but to say goodbye.

He's out. Sa up to around 37,000.

3.45pm: Victor the victor
A hand to the good for Victor Ramdin. Down to the 6k mark earlier today he's back up to more than 24,000 after a hand against Natan Wager .

Victor Ramdin

With a board showing K-8-2-7 Ramdin had forced Wager out with a bet, stacking his new chips that were pushed his way from the other end of the table where Wager was. Wager was curious, asking Ramdin what he had.

"Flush draw," said Ramdin, matter-of-factly.

"I don't think so," replied Wager. "But I don't think it's three eights. Likely king-queen or queen-jack."

But this was a one sided conversation, designed to ease the curiosity of Wager. For his part Ramdin said nothing.

3.35pm: Ramdin's Hands

Once we got to Victor Ramdin's table, it was hard to leave. He won some hands and he lost others, but he wouldn't give up. Over the course of four hands, Victor Ramdin managed to play all four hands.

Hand #1

Ramdin raised to 525 from early position and got one caller in the button, and one in the big blind. The flop was 7♦Q♣Q♥, and Ramdin took down the pot with a 1,125 bet.

Hand #2

Ramdin raised to 525 from early position, (déjà vu?) but this time, the cutoff re-raised to 2,500 (the button in the previous episode).

Ramdin decided this hand wasn't worth pursuing and laid it down.

Hand #3

Ramdin is UTG and just calls. The button and the small blind decide to call as well and the big blind checks.

What was the flop?

Well, it was 9♥[10h]2♠

What did the players do?

The small and big blind checked, Victor bet 550 and everyone folded.

"Aces?" asked Nathan Wager.

"Close," said Ramdin as he collected his chips.

Hand #4

We saved the best for last.

There are four callers, and Ramdin checks his option in the big blind.
The flop came K♠[10s]2♦ and action was folded to Andres Carrillo in the button who made it 800.Ramdin was the only caller.

The turn was a 7♠ and both players checked.

An 8♥ came on the river and Victor bet 2,700. Carrillo thought for a while before and said, "Call. Flush?"

Ramdin showed 2♠3♠ for the flush. Carillo begrudgingly put 2,700 in the pot and showed his [10d]8♦. Ramdin is now up to 18,000.

3.25pm: The Brenes boys
Most countries aren't as well represented as the Brenes family in LAPTs. Four Brenes started this tournament, but only three remain.

Roberto Brenes was the first to fall. The board was Q♦Q♣9♥5♦ and Brenes was facing a 650 bet from Rafael Ferreira. Brenes raised to 3,000 and Ferreira moved all-in. Brenes put his remaining 4,000 chips in instantly and flipped over Q♠J♠. It looked like he was in good shape until Ferreira showed the last queen and a K♦ for a better kicker.

The river was a K♠ filling Ferreira up, and knocking out the youngest Brenes in the field. "That's the second time today," said Brenes.

Brenes mentioned how earlier today he held Ace-Queen with two queens on the board. As reported earlier he was ahead of his opponents King-Queen, until a King hit on the turn. The queens were kind to Roberto today but he just couldn't topple the kings.

He still has three family members to cheer on, and this is how they're doing: Jose Humberto Brenes: 18,000 Alex Brenes: 16,825 Humberto Brenes: 19,300

3.15pm: End of the level
Blinds are up to 100-200 in level four.

3.05pm: Must be a mis-print
It was a battle of Team PokerStars Pros on the table of death, which is losing its ferociousness level by level.

Still on course for a record setting third LAPT title, Nacho Barbero made it 900 to go on a flop of K♣T♠J♣. Leandro Balotin called before Angel Guillen raised to 1,800. Barbero called as did Balotin for a 7♣ turn.

Barbero and Balotin checked to Guillen who bet 7,300. There was trouble ahead for Barbero. He tanked for a while and then moved all-in. Guillen called showing A♣6♣. Bad news for Barbero, at this point no longer on course for a third LAPT title, who showed 4♣5♣.

Nacho Barbero, about to come to terms with life on the rail

Guillen moves up to 95,000 chips, but for Barbero it's the unusual position of being on the rail for the first time in three events. As a double winner Barbero is now entitled to counselling and a guaranteed pension as he returns to normal life.

While you won't be able to see Nacho Barbero in the tournament anymore, you can see him over and over again in this video*.

Video brought to you by the PokerStars Video Blog Team.

2.50pm: Talking of Ross Bybee
With four to a flop of K♥6♣7♦ the action was checked to Ross Bybee in early position who also checked, only after Martin Fernandez had bet 1,150 out of turn. That stood though and the action was folded back to Bybee who raised to 3,500.

Fernandez took his time, looking at his cards again before calling for a 2♥ turn. Bybee threw in a blue chip worth 5,000, then waited. Again Fernandez took his time, thinking things over but eventually folding. The hand moves Bybee's stack up to around 35,000 while Fernandez drops back to 20,000.

2.35pm: MicroManiac
How much are you willing to pay to attend an LAPT? If you're feeling cheeky, you can put up the $2,500+200 buy-in and pay for the accommodations yourself. Watching your bankroll a bit? Try the $215 qualifiers on PokerStars.

How about $1?

For around the price of a bag of Atomic Fireballs you could have qualified for the LAPT Florianopolis. If I was left with only one dollar, I know the decision between an LAPT and the fiery sweetness of Atomic Fireballs would be a tough one. But there's a player here who took $1 and turned it into an LAPT Florianopolis seat. That man is Ross Bybee.

During the month of July, PokerStars held its first ever MicroMania. It was a series of tournaments with beefed up prize pools geared towards microstakes players.

Ross Bybee, here for a dollar

One Sunday, Bybee, known online as "TexMo", entered a $1.10 tournament on PokerStars.

"I didn't really notice the winner got a prize package but when I entered the tourney it DID pop up asking if I was available to play the tourney in August," said Bybee. "Since I own my own business I can get off whenever I want so didn't think much about it, until I got to the final table."

The tournament featured 450 entrants for a total prize pool of $2,657, less than half the value of the package for first place. Second place became a super bubble. After battling 77TheMayor77 heads-up, Bybee was eventually victorious and won $419.48 for first place. He also won the seat.

This will be Bybee's first major tournament but he's no stranger to live play. Bybee frequents the Choctow and Winstar in Texas and even won one of the Choctow's monthly $500 tournaments.

He now finds himself thousands of miles away from home playing for thousands of dollars, hoping to turn that $1 into thousands more.

Earlier today, our video team caught up with Bybee. This is what he had to say:

2.20pm: Gomes re-groups
Before the break Alex Gomes did his stack a world of good with a pair of queens on a 5♦9♦6♠6♥T♥ board. He's back up to 20,000 after earlier escapades.

2.15pm: We're back
Play restarts in level three with blinds at 75-150.

A dancer at the party last night

PokerStars Blog reporting team in Florianopolis: (in order of caipirinha's consumed at the welcome party last night): Alex Villegas (between 11 and 16) and Stephen Bartley (between 5 and 16).