Playground Poker Fall Classic: Francois Graton-Valiquette Wins, Mike Fraser Leads The Frenzy

Francois Graton-Valiquette

A new champion has been crowned and The Frenzy is down to the final 27 players after Monday’s action at the 2016 Playground Poker Fall Classic.

Francois Graton-Valiquette lifted the Champion’s trophy in Event #4: NL Hold’em Deepstack Turbo, earning a top prize of $4,545. On the other side of the room, Mike Fraser bagged the chip lead after Day 2 of Event #3: The $250 Frenzy.

Mike Fraser

Event #4 kicked off at noon on Monday afternoon inside Playground Poker Club. With a guarantee of just $5,000, the field size typically caps out around 100 players. This event, however, captured the interest of 205 runners, creating a prize pool four times the guarantee, closing at $19,885.

Graton-Valiquette defeated Michel Gaudette heads up to claim the victory. On the final hand, Guadette made an ill-timed shove on a flop which Graton-Valiquette had flopped two-pair. They held for the win. Guadette received $3,390 for his efforts.

Here are the payouts made at the final table:

PlaceNamePrize
1Francois Graton-Valiquette$4,545.00
2Michel Gaudette$3,390.00
3Vincent Tremblay$2,535.00
4Fred Belanger$1,895.00
5Kordian Zwolinski$1,410.00
6Andre St-Jean$1,055.00
7Kuong Chhe Kuoch$785.00
8Domenico Vessio$590.00
9Simon Bissonnette-du-Cap$440.00

Across the room, Day 2 of Event #3 was underway with fast-paced action. Of the 285 players who returned, only 135 made the money. Over 80 players dropped in the first hour of play and another 50-plus dropped within the second hour. The field stalled as the money bubble loomed, and finally, Leo Mantas Ragus fell in 136th place.

The usual post-bubble bustout spree began claiming the tournament lives of Duy Toan Pham, El Abbes Benjelloun, Yannick Labattaglia, Khaly Dang, Steve Cotton and Jason Conforti. Soon after, some of the field's previous leaders hit the rail. Malik Lefty (58th, $925), Sivasuthan Balasingam (39th, $1,175.00), Ruben Perceval (33rd, $1,425), and start of day chip leader, Kosta Papa (28th, $1,550), all fell before night’s end.

Mike Fraser is in the driver’s seat heading into Day 3. Fraser built up a stack of 2,455,000 before the clock was paused on early Tuesday morning. Marco Caza also accumulated a stack over two million, tossing 2,160,000 chips into his bag.

Marco Caza

Eric Levesque (1,980,000), Duane Fernandez (1,910,000) and Domenico Scalamogna (1,550,000) round out the top five stacks.

Eric Levesque

Some notables still in the mix include Eric Ranger, Thomas Lefort, Randy Khalil and Tomas Larivee Magni. Play is set to resume at 7 p.m. Tuesday evening when the final 27 players will play down a champion, with one of them walking away with $50,000 and a champion’s trophy.

Check out PokerNews daily for a recap of all the action at the Playground Poker Fall Classic. Follow all of the action on the Fall Classic Event Blog.

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