The €50+€10 Dusk Till Dawn Grand Prix, which carries a hefty €100,000 guarantee, kicked off on Saturday afternoon and if yesterday's attendance is a sign of things to come we should prepare ourselves for a record-breaking turnout.
The first of seven starting days began at 1400 and by the time registration had closed six 40-minute levels later the screens around the vast were showing that 413 players had bought in. Each of these 413 players received 15,000 tournament chips but some made better use of them than others.
First to bust out of the event was Matt Crocker but his quest for glory is not necessarily over because anyone who busts out on any Day 1, except for the final flight, can re-enter on any of the other Day 1's. Although Crocker was the first players to head for the rail he was certainly not the only player to lose his stack during Day 1a because by the time the curtain came down on a day's intense poker there were only 77 players who had chips to bag up.
Leon Iacono is the man who has the bragging rights from Day 1a after he managed to turn his 15,000 starting stack into a field leading 224,000. Iacono cashed in this event back in August where he finished 318th from the 4,010 runners for €125. He has got off to the perfect start this time around and will be hoping to build on this great start when he returns to the Nottingham-based club on Saturday 21 January for Day 2.
Joining Iacono at the right end of the chip counts are Mark Briggs (200,700), Barnaby Wood (197,000), Ian Smith (160,000) and Ben Turner (158,800).
Day 1b gets under way at 1400 this afternoon and should see a similar sized field and players are urged to buy-in through the Dusk Till Dawn online poker client. Also, please be aware that if you are planning on participating on any Day 1's that are on a week day they do not start until 1700, it is only the weekend games that begin at 1400.