The halls and the poker rooms of the Rio were packed today as players turned out in droves for Event #51, the $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Monster Stack.
The numbers were so big that a second flight was introduced with flight A capped at 4,020 entrants. As they finished play for the day at the end of nine one-hour levels flight B players were still taking their seats with the tournament screen showing 7,734 registrations.
The prize pool has yet to be announced but with those numbers it means over $11 million will be paid out with the winner sure to walk away with over $1.3 million
It was difficult to pick out a chip leader at the end of the day as players were still seated in several areas, but Pierre Calamusa will take some catching finishing with over 220,000 chips.
With a starting stack of 600 big blinds the tournament held the promise of a lot of play for the entrants but it didn’t necessarily work out that way for everyone. For the less experienced players it was a chance to see a few more flops and recover from early mistakes. For the pros it was a chance to show their deepstack skills and to make the most of the value that the field represented.
It looked as if at least a third of the starting flight had been eliminated by the end of their allotted nine levels of play, but with no official confirmation yet it is hard to put an exact figure on the eliminations.
Some of the notables in the first flight who will be coming back tomorrow include Sofia Lovgren, Kara Scott, Barny Boatman, Dermot Blain, Dash Dudley and Jimmy Fricke. Many more have opted to join the second flight and are still playing in the hope of joining them.
Coverage of Day 2 resumes tomorrow at 3 p.m. and PokerNews will be there to keep you up to date with all the developments of this huge tournament including confirmation of the chip leaders, final numbers and prize pool as the two flights merge and the action continues.