LAPT8 Peru: Raul Alvarez bags Day 1A lead; David Vamplew finishes strong

The first Day 1 flight of the LAPT Peru Main Event has reached its conclusion, and following 10 one-hour levels of play Peru's own Raul Alvarez was the one bagging the most chips out of the 52 players making it through, collecting a total of 127,100 by the end of play.


Raul Alvarez

It had only been last October when we made our last visit to the Atlantic City casino in the Miraflores district of Lima, when we witnessed the Chilean Oscar Alache picking up the trophy and title. The day thus began with thoughts of that event and other memorable poker in Peru.

The feelings of déjà vu persisted into the day's first levels, especially when we saw Alache and Renata Teixeira -- heads-up opponents at LAPT Chile this spring where Alache ultimately picked up a second LAPT title -- meeting again after drawing seats side-by-side.


Renata Teixeira and Oscar Alache

We saw Canadian friends Francois Lincourt and Shakeeb Kazemipur -- both final tablists at LAPT Panama in May -- sitting at the same table early on today as well. Lincourt finished fifth in that one while Kazemipur earned the victory, and the latter shared the story of that exciting experience with us.

Alache, Lincourt, and Kazemipur would each be eliminated before play concluded today, while Teixeira made it through to Sunday's Day 2 with a stack of 33,700.

We spent the later afternoon and early evening perusing some of the other players who came out today, noting the many familiar faces among them. Looking at who made it through to night's end, Daniel Bizoza (120,800), Regis Kogler (113,500), and Marcus Martinez (110,100) sported some of the bigger stacks, to be joined on Day 2 by Oscar Barriga (66,000), Ale Braga (51,200), Fabian Ortiz (40,700), and Team PokerStars Pro Andre Akkari (27,500).


Regis Kogler

There were a couple of other players here today well known to followers of tournament poker, although neither had been seen frequenting the LAPT much before.

EPT/UKIPT London champion David Vamplew satellited into this one back in the spring, and midway through the first day of his LAPT debut spoke to us about how things were going to that point. The rest of the day went well for the Scottish pro, who ended the night bagging 113,300.


David Vamplew

Dominik Nitsche was also here for a while today before busting. Unlike Vamplew, Nitsche had played on the LAPT before, and most memorably, too, winning a title in Argentina back in Season 2 and what is still the biggest first prize in tour history.

We'll see Nitsche again tomorrow, and likely also many others who eliminated as they played into the night such as Ivan Luca, Alex Manzano, Mario Lopez, Amos Ben, Nacho Barbero, and Team PokerStars Pro Online member Jorge "Baalim' Limon.

There were a total of 134 entries today -- click here for a full rundown of chip counts of the 52 survivors. Expectations are tomorrow's Day 1B will attract a much larger field. Play resumes once more at 12 noon local time. Join us again then to see who returns, who makes it through, and how players position themselves going forward as we together find out who will be the next LAPT Main Event champion.

Until then, buenos noches from Lima!

Photography from LAPT8 Peru by Carlos Monti. You can also follow the action in Spanish here and in Portuguese here.

Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.