Thursday, March 16, 2006

Back in the saddle again

FullTiltPoker is running a promotion consisting of twice daily freerolls of up to 1800 entrants, where the top 36 from each event roll up into a weekly freeroll of about 1000 entrants, of which the top 9 from each week in a given month join frequent players and other good customers of the service in a tourney where the top 20 are given $10k seats for the big dance. They're giving away 20 seats per month for the next five months.

I found the combination of:

  1. free
  2. often
  3. convenient
to be too much to not obsess over.

So, I discussed with my lovely wife whether she would divorce me and/or kick me out of the ouse if I decided that I wanted to try and win a seat through this series. This in mind of the fact that I've already taken my yearly foray at the Oaks, as earlier reported. This in mind of the fact that she and I had previously discussed my annual foray being executed on-line, instead of in a cardroom, and that was roundly rejected as the temptation and availability of playing online for money was too disquieting to her.

In preparation for this discussion, I ran an experiment. I installed the client and registered for one of the daily tourneys and then just left the seat unoccupied to be blinded away, just to see how long it lasts. My hypothesis being that with the insanity of free play, I wanted to see how long it took for the 'real' tourney to begin. Turns out that of the 1800, generally 1300 of them are gone in the first hour. My test subject lasted until 283rd place.

That's a lot of crazy and/or dead money in there, I decided.

Armed with these facts, Jen & I had our discussion, and she actually agreed to a trial run. A big part of it is that they dailys generally start after the kids are in bed and are running when we are usually just watching TV or reading in bed, anyway.

So, I get to play in the dailys until:

  1. I win a seat
  2. I'm too grumpy in the morning to take care of the kids

I've played in four of them so far, and have not finished higher than the low 400's. Three of these times I went in with the best of it, and the most recent time was ended with a total brain fart with a double gutter on the flop to which I made the idiot end of a straight. I was actually on my A-game up to that point and had about a 4x average stack. I am not as upset and I could be about the brain fart, as up to that point, I'd identified and avoided stupid situations I'd fallen for in the past, as well as having identified and exploited obvious weaknesses in other players to take pots.

So, for now, I'm in and I'm stoked. I still have faint hopes for the Oaks freeroll, but now I've got a second chance.

I figure that given the competition, I'm about a 500:1 against getting a seat. With each of the three rounds taking about 5 hours from start to finish, it could be as little as 15 hours to get a $10k seat. An additional part of their promotion is if you play on FTP money and get to the final table, you get $50k extra prize money, $100k for top three and $10MM if you win the event. The $10MM is $1MM/year for 10 years as part of an endorsement contract, where you have to play 10 hrs/week on FTP and promise to wear only their t-shirts.

Anyway, hopefully see you at the WSOP :)

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