Paul Carr shredded the Irish Poker Tour this year, and capped his hot streak with three wins this fall. [Image: Shutterstock.com]
The headlines in poker are often reserved for players’ achievements at the higher levels of the game, but the most important score in poker, whether live or online, is undoubtedly the lower bets. Grassroots poker is the lifeblood of the game – a place where recreational players blow their steam, where up and coming players cut their teeth, and where communities form.
The Irish Poker Tour (IPT) is the substrate upon which these high profile events can thrive
In Ireland, there has always been a huge focus on the popular game of poker. From pub poker to student poker to low sign-up major event festivals, poker organizers have always fostered and developed the game from the bottom up. If the Irish Poker Open is big every year and the Unibet International Poker Open (IPO) is the small event, then the Irish Poker Tour (IPT) is the substrate on which these high-profile events can thrive.
The Irish Poker Tour began in 2005 and relaunched in October 2021, in partnership with Paddy Power Poker and run by veteran player, commentator and event organizer Fintan Gavin. They announced in August VegasSlotsOnline news Writer Dara O’Kearney as the “Live Poker Strategy Coach” for the tour and in September, they announced Andy Black as an ambassador. In the past two months, they have also found themselves a poster boy in the form of Paul Carr who has won a trio of championships in back-to-back festivals.
Carr’s purple patch
In 2010, Carr rose to fame when he finished runner-up in the €3,500 ($3,645) Irish Open to €312,600 ($325,557). He outplayed 706 players, but eventually lost to James Mitchell for the title. It was a performance that garnered mainstream attention that Carr famously appeared on “The Late Late Show,” speaking for his breakout score.
It is an example of how the popular game of poker can lead a great player to the big leagues.
Since then, Carr’s poker resume has been an eclectic mix of low and high stakes results. for him Hendon Mob profile It features 68 live cashes, seven of which are in tournaments with a buyout of over €1,000 ($1,041), but also 21 in tournaments with a buyout of less than €100 ($104). It is an example of how the popular game of poker can lead a great player to the big leagues.
In January 2015, Carr won the IPC Main Event in Galway for €16,450 ($17,132), lighting another impressive purple patch. At the time, he followed it up by canceling the Cavan Open for €5,500 ($5,728), the JB Masters for €6,825 ($7,108), the Dublin Festival of Poker for €15,000 ($15,622) and the month-end Fitzwilliam for €10,000. ($10,412) all in the next four months.
Since the IPT relaunch, Carr has been an ever-present, but in the year 2022 he’s on fire. In February, he came fifth in Limerick. In July, he finished fifth at Claremores. Then in August and September he had a pair of third-place finishes at Athlone and Killarney.
The trend was upward and continued, culminating in a hot October as he scored back-to-back wins in Dundalk and Limerick events for €4,810 ($5,009) and €3,880 ($4,041) each. He completed his hat-trick on Friday when the Claremorris event closed for €3,800 ($3,958).
VSO News He reached out to Carr, but the Limerick man was too modest to blow his own horn. Fortunately, Dara O’Kearney was happy to do it for him: “Paul is in great shape to perform. One of the greatest characters in the game, he’s reaping the rewards of some positive lifestyle changes and a more serious approach to studying the game. On top of those results, he’s winning.” Recently, two online tournaments in the same night!”
High quality events with low buyouts and great guarantees
The IPT will be in Dublin and Galway in December and there are already stations announced in Cork, Palinaslow and Westport for the first five weeks of 2023. VSO News He spoke to Fintan Gavin, owner and operator of the Irish Poker Tour, to talk about his goals and ambitions for the future:
We want recreational players to be able to access high-quality events with low subscription fees and great guarantees.
“The Irish Poker Tour’s mission statement is to bring high-quality, professional poker tournaments to all regions. We want recreational players to be able to access high-quality events with low buy-in fees and great guarantees. To this end, we have put together a very special team of industry professionals who focus on the player experience. Paddy Power adds value by adding money to each stop, and the end result is an atmosphere similar to larger events such as the WSOP, EPT and Irish Open.”
Without a doubt, there is a live poker boom right now and it’s great to see energetic organizers matching the passion of players who love the game. It is also encouraging that these same organizers are paying attention to the grassroots. Take care of the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves.