Playground Winter Festival: Le Floch Wins Second Title

Nicolas Le Floch

France's Nicolas Le Floch is having a great trip in Montreal.

Just days ago, Le Floch was lifting a Playground Winter Festival Champion’s trophy for topping the field in the Omaha event. Le Floch, who won a package to the WPT Playground Main Event online through partypoker, then made a deep run in the WPT event, finishing in 29th. A day later, Le Floch has captured the Winter Festival Second Chance title, bringing his total earnings at Playground this week to $62,355.

Day 2 of Event #13: $1,650 NL Hold’em Second Chance resumed on Tuesday with 21 players left in the mix, just seven away from the money. Le Floch began the day among the leaders in a field that also included Daniel Dvoress, multiple Playground trophy winner Shawn Daigle, Thomas Lefort, Danny Le and chip leaderChad Coombs.

Play quickly moved down to the final two tables. Soon after, Le Floch busted the bubble by eliminating Scott Diver in 15th place. Lefort, Martin Szlavy and Matthew Wantman would find the exit before Dvoress hit the rail, setting the final table.

Final Table Results:

1Nicolas Le Floch$47,140
2Shawn Daigle$29,130
3Alexandre Lavigne$17,440
4Jeremy Lyons$11,390
5Chad Coombs$8,790
6Michael Garry Aron$7,220
7Stephane Fournier$6,120
8Lonnie Hallett$5,340
9Daniel Le$4,710
10Yann Prevost-Dumont$4,160

Daigle and Le Floch picked away at the field and Alexandre Lavigne scored a few knockouts. With the final three set, Lavigne and Le Floch would tangle in a pot that would see the former hit the rail. Lavigne shoved preflop with pocket fours, racing against the ace-ten of Le Floch. An ace would land on the river and Lavigne’s day was done.

Le Floch had more than a 2-1 chip lead on Daigle when heads-up play began. Interestingly enough, according to the Playground live blog, Le Floch’s heads-up opponent in his Omaha win, Andre Markovinovic, is a roommate of Daigle’s.

The two battled for the better part of three levels without much change in the chip counts before Le Floch was able to seal the deal. In a pot where both players hit the flop, the money went in on the turn with Daigle having ace-five and Le Floch holding ace-nine on an eight-ace-nine-seven board. Daigle needed a six to stay alive but the river bricked and Le Floch earned his second title of the Winter Festival.

The penultimate event of the Winter Festival got underway Tuesday evening. Event #15: $550 NL Hold’em 6-Max attracted a field of 100 players. Taking down the event and putting himself on top of the Playground festival all-time cashes list, was Bill Kontaratos.

Bill Kontaratos
Bill Kontaratos

Kontaratos has made several deep runs this festival including a runner-up finish in Event #11 three days ago. Early Wednesday morning, Kontaratos busted his final opponent to claim the champion’s trophy and bank a score of $12,050.

Final Table Payouts:

1Bill Kontaratos$12,050
2Patrick St-Onge$9,170
3Charles La Boissonniere$7,000
4Raphael Bernard$5,350
5Alexander Mackenzie Fitzgerald$4,090
6Patrick Braga$3,120

Kontaratos’ victory was no easy task given the field he topped en route. Jonathan Bussieries, Brian Morgan, David Valcourt-Dube, Rodney Ramalho, Michael Malm, Laurence Grondin and Ruben Perceval all took their shot but faded out before the money.

Just 12 players would earn a cash in the event. Once Shu Pui Philip Tse fell in 13th place, the remaining players had locked up a min-cash and play quickly accelerated to a final table. Raphael Bernard held the chip lead when the final table commenced but is was Kontaratos that would score the first elimination.

Patrick Braga put his tournament life on the line with ace-queen and Kontaratos put him at risk, calling with pocket fives. Kontaratos would win the race and Praga would fall in sixth. Then it was Bernard’s turn to shorten the table. Bernard scored a cooler to send Alex Fitzgerald to the rail with both men turning a full house; Bernard had the best of it.

With just a 12 big blind average, play moved along quite quickly for the final four as Bernard and Charles La Boissonniere succumbed to the stack of Kontaratos. Patrick St-Onge was able to battle back from a chip deficit to even out the playing field.

Patrick St-Onge
Patrick St-Onge

With both players relatively short-stacked, they each picked up an ace preflop and the chips went into the middle. Kontaratos had St-Onge outkicked with his ace-queen to St-Onge’s ace-six. Though St-Onge picked up some extra outs on the turn, Kontaratos’s kicker played and the victory was his.

With the WPT Playground Main Event finishing a day early, just a single lone event is on the schedule for Wednesday. The final event of the series, Event #16: $330 NL Hold’em 8-Max Bounty kicks off at 7 p.m. and boasts a guarantee of $35,000.

The Playground Winter Festival runs through Feb. 15 and PokerNews will bring you daily updates of all the happenings throughout the festival. For full coverage and details check out the Playground event blog here.

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