The Art of the Cards

Philosophical musings on poker and life

  1. 2009-05-22 04:38:30

    Racer Ring 2

    May's version of the 'Boys' Night Out' poker tournament came and went last week. The game was the same: $10 buy-in, NLHE. Only seven players this time meant only three got paid. Since the tournament is timed (start at 7pm end at 9:30, payout by stacks) we experimented with a faster blind structure. Starting chip stack was just over T3000 with blinds at 25/50, doubling every half hour 'til the end.

    The action started out rather timidly as it tends to. Lots of cheap rivers. My first hand was near the end of the first round. I was under the gun, gave my hole cards the cursory glance before the quick fold that is customary from me at that spot. Wait up. What was that? The ole suited Stu. Instead of folding, I threw in a raise to wake things up. A couple callers witnessed a King-high board. The flop bet got a caller, but not the turn bet. I dragged a nice pot that had me in a good position for the end of round 1.

    Round 2 saw more action, but the chips just shifted around the table. No one seemed to have a higher or lower stack. I made some position raises only to fold on ugly boards, including an unkind . A big blind pot did fall in my lap when I saw my hold up on a Queen-high board. He showed down second pair and I was stacking up chips again. After another 'held up' on an ace-high board I was in a great spot.

    It took an awfully long time for anyone to go broke. Part of this due to the chip trading that I spoke of and part due to conservative short-stack play. For example, I think Paul had 300 chips when he finally went all in preflop with a Unfortunately for him, I once again had . Not 10 hands later, I'm looking down at Even better, I get reraised all in preflop by The dealer pauses for drama after the flop and turn give my opponent an open-ender, but you know I reeled that one in.

    At this point in the night we're down to five with one extra-short stack. You may think I'm making shit up, but I looked down at #4 on the night from the cutoff during round 4. My raise was called by the small blind. Ace, rag, rag, brought a pause followed by a check from my opponent. My half-pot bet draws an even longer pause. During this time I'm wondering. He would have reraised with KK preflop. So maybe he has AQ or AJ, even AT? He makes a pained call. The turn: and he insta-checks. So fast, in fact, that he had to remind me that it was a check and not some sort of nervous twitch. I'm the one getting nervous at this point as that Q could have put him over the top and he is just the kind of guy to sandbag me. I check behind. The river brings another rag and another (albeit slower) insta-check. Would he really risk winning nothing with such a lock of a hand? Not likely. I make a half-pot-ish bet that I can get away from if he reraises big. Of course he calls and shows down The loss cripples him and puts me in the position of supreme chip-tator of the table. Barring any coups, I'm taking this one down.

    From there on, it's all about the counting. Two guys are actually force all-in by the blinds and we have some no-look fun, but they're both out in pretty short order (including the AJ from earlier). With 20 minutes left, second and third were just a few chips apart and I'm in a shell. I played some hands to keep them honest, but I was good for first unless a meteor hit the table, so I didn't press. Astronomical aberrations failed and I did take it. In a bit of high drama like last month, the last hand determined second place. It wasn't a crazy bid for first place by a last hand pocket pair though, just a routine hand folded on the flop by some guys who didn't count their money while they were sitting at the table. It came down to 50 chips. Thin to win indeed.

    Another fun game to be sure. I don't know how the other guys felt about me always having the hand, but you know I had a good time. Couple that with a few beers, snacks and laughs and we all wish it could go all night or at least happen more than once a month... So 'til next month, may the malevolent poker gods become confused on their way to your table. Peace out.

    Posted by Graham at 2009-05-22 04:38:30

Comments on “Racer Ring 2”

    • avatar for Jason M
    • i said "looser". i'm dumb lately :(

    • avatar for Jason M
    • Nice work, dude. Perhaps you need to take some lessons from Worm and learn to play the part of the looser a bit better. You want to get invited back, right? LOL