ClubWPT Qualifier Jerry Tucker Talks About His WPT World Championship Experience

When the World Poker Tour announced a record-breaking $15 million guarantee for their season-ending WPT World Championship at Wynn Las Vegas, there were many who wondered how the event would avoid an overlay. Instead, the tournament ended up drawing nearly 3,000 players and almost doubled the guarantee!

One reason why the event turned out to be such a success was because of the huge number of players who won their seats. Not only did the Wynn poker room run frequent qualifiers, but the tour’s free-to-play ClubWPT online site also sent an army of players as well.

In total, ClubWPT awarded 27 players with a WPT World Championship package worth $12,000. That was in addition to 22 players who won a WPT Prime Championship ticket, and another seven players with a special events package.

“Since launching in 2008, ClubWPT has been an amazing way to get players from all walks of life more involved in poker,” said WPT CEO Adam Pliska. “[These] packages are the most prestigious prizes we have ever awarded on ClubWPT, and we are proud to host qualifying players at our 20th-anniversary celebration.”

A wide range of ClubWPT players showed up to face off against the best in the world during the $10,400 main event, including 32-year-old Joseph DiTomasso, who is a P.E. teacher and soccer coach from Concord, New Hampshire.

There was also 78-year-old retired architect Richard Hill. The Paso Robles, California resident said that he was checking an item off his bucket list by playing in the tournament.

Jerry TuckerCard Player was able to speak with another ClubWPT qualifier in Jerry Tucker, who survived his starting flight on day 1B to advance to day 2.

Tucker, a 48-year-old from Florence, Kentucky, explained to us how he won his seat.

“I was playing on ClubWPT, the subscription site, and ended up beating out 1,450 players,” Tucker said. “It was a winner-take-all tournament, and when we were five-handed, I was short stacked and down to my last chip. But I was able to come back and win it.”

Tucker’s chip-and-a-chair story earned him a trip to Las Vegas, where he was treated to a four-night stay at Wynn Las Vegas. His $12,000 passport package included the $10,400 main event buy-in, as well as $1,000 in cash. ClubWPT players also got acccess to the VIP lounge and a meet-and-greet with WPT brand ambassadors and talent.

His first starting table was rough, and Tucker saw his stack cut down from 100,000 to just 15,000 relatively quickly. The short-stack ninja was able to fight back and finish the day with 104,000, however.

“They treated us great and it was a fun experience. The way I went out was kind of annoying, though, on the very first hand of day 2.”

Tucker had just sat down when he decided to try and isolate a short-stacked all-in player, only to run his pocket sevens into another player’s pocket jacks.

“I don’t have any regrets,” said Tucker. “I think I would make the same play again. Overall I had a lot of fun. There was a world champion to my left, and I got to play with some other good players as well.”

Although he didn’t score a life-changing payout at the WPT World Championships, Tucker was able to book a win at the cash games tables during his time in Vegas.

“I’m feeling a lot better about my game,” Tucker admitted.

You can check out ClubWPT here.