Blair Hinkle goes for a fourth Horseshoe Council Bluffs Circuit Main Event title.
Council Bluffs, Iowa (April 7, 2019) — The Horseshoe Council Bluffs Circuit is five eliminations away from concluding. Six players will return Monday at noon for Day 3 and the conclusion of the tournament. Everyone returning tomorrow is guaranteed a payout of at least $18,769, but all will have their sights set on the top prize. The champion will earn $99,267, a WSOP Circuit ring and a free entry to the $1 Million Guaranteed Global Casino Championship.
Returning for Day 3 fourth in chips is the most successful WSOP Circuit Horseshoe Council Bluffs Circuit player of all-time. Blair Hinkle has dominated the Horseshoe Council Bluffs WSOP Circuit stop like no one has ever done before at any Circuit property. Hinkle is a five-time WSOP Circuit ring winner, with four of those rings being won right here at Horseshoe Council Bluffs, and three of those four being Main Event titles. Hinkle won the Main Event here in 2010, 2013 and 2014. Not to mention, he also has a WSOP gold bracelet, which he won at the 2008 World Series of Poker. Hinkle will be shooting for a milestone that no one has ever achieved on the Circuit before and that is winning four Circuit Main Events at the same property.
Joining Hinkle at the final table and also shooting for a major milestone is Ari Engel. Engel will be starting Day 3 fifth chips. The milestone Engel will be chasing is the double-digit Circuit ring club. Engel has nine career WSOP Circuit rings and can earn his 10th Monday with a win. Engel is currently tied for fifth on the all-time Circuit rings list, but a win would give him that fifth spot all to his own and bring him within two rings of all-time leader Valentin Vornicu.
Starting Day 3 with the chip lead is Keven Berthelsen from Omaha, Nebraska. Berthelsen started his rampage to the top of the chip counts as soon as the tournament was redrawn to the unofficial final table. Berthelsen eliminated Kyle McKinney in 10th place, Daniel Thomas in 9th place and Dash Saenz in 8th place. After the string of knockouts, he took the chip lead and hasn’t relinquished it since. Berthelsen is chasing a first career WSOP Circuit ring.
Also returning for Day 3 with a shot at winning their first career WSOP Circuit ring is Greg Jennings (3rd in chips) and Sarah Zeluf (6th in chips). Nick Burris (2nd in chips) returns chasing after a second career WSOP Circuit ring.
Day 2 started with 47 hopefuls. The top 30 finishers cashed. The money bubble burst on the last hand before the first break of the day when Stanislav Angelov busted in brutal fashion to eventual seventh place finisher Hamid Izadi. The first player to head to the exits with a payout ticket was Mohammed Nuwwarah. Nuwwarah’s 30th place finish only earned him $2,804, but helped him secure his Horseshoe Council Bluff Casino Championship title. Nuwwarah cashed four times over the course of the series, including reaching three final tables and winning his second career WSOP Circuit ring. Whoever wins the Main Event on Monday will be accompanying Nuwwarah at Global Casino Championship.
Hoping to match Hinkle’s feat of winning three Horseshoe Council Bluffs WSOP Circuit Main Event titles was Maurice Hawkins. Hawkins won the Main Event here in 2016 and 2017. The 11-time WSOP Circuit ring winner made another deep run, but ended up just finishing in 14th place.
Stay tuned to WSOP.com for live updates from the final table to see if Hinkle can win his fourth Horseshoe Council Bluffs Circuit Main Event title, or if someone new will take the crown.
Day 3 Chip Counts:
Seat 1: Ari Engel – 860,000
Seat 2: Kevin Berthelsen – 2,350,000
Seat 3: Blair Hinkle – 1,045,000
Seat 4: Nick Burris – 1,790,000
Seat 5: Greg Jennings – 1,355,000
Seat 6: Sarah Zeluf – 765,000
– Day 3 will start at the beginning of Level 26: 20,000/40,000 with a 5,000 ante