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Four Poker Players Crowned First WSOP Main Event Winners

Turning Stone Resort Casino saw four poker players punch their tickets to the 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event in Las Vegas this past month—all for winning the first local WSOP Main Event in October.

Three of the four winners were from Upstate New York.

The first batch of winners were David Dawson from Afton, New York; Nathanael Kelley from Syracuse, New York; Christopher Wicher from Endicott, New York; and David Stern from Thomaston, Connecticut.

Each of these guests won a $10,000 seat to the big WSOP Main Event next summer in Las Vegas, plus $3,000 in travel expenses to get and stay there. Another player who finished fifth took home $5,200 in cash.

Frank Foti, director of poker operations, said he was “delighted” with the turnout for the first WSOP Main Event of the season. Frank said that the level of play in our ongoing qualifying WSOP satellite poker tournaments that filled the field for the first Main Event has been top-notch since satellites started in August.

“The level of play has been excellent as always, and these players really are doing us proud,” he said. “We’re excited to send these four winners to represent Turning Stone in the Main Event in Vegas.”

Of course, these first four winners won’t be our only representatives; our poker room will sponsor additional WSOP satellite events every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday between now and December 18, and future satellite winners can take home $1,400 seats to Turning Stone’s second local WSOP Main Event on January 1, 2023.

One out of every 10 winners at that event also will win seats in Vegas.

Because winner numbers are based on registration numbers, it’s difficult to predict how many players will win seats at these events, but the ultimate contingent of winners from Turning Stone Resort Casino could be as many as two dozen or more.

And for those players thinking about trying to qualify over Thanksgiving weekend, there are no satellites on November 25, 26, or 27.

Overall, Frank said interest in the WSOP satellites is good for Turning Stone’s poker room overall.

“The more people who come to play poker in the satellites, the more excitement we experience here in the poker room,” Frank said. “There’s nothing quite like an exciting poker room. We’re excited to be hosting these sorts of tournaments here.”




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