PokerStars ran NAPT and UKIPT simultaneously in Las Vegas and Nottingham
Both series ended successfully, with the Main Events attracting huge turnouts
The NAPT and UKIPT are both returning tours, having stopped running in 2010 and 2015 respectively
PokerStars has been busy lately with its return to the US live poker scene via the North American Poker Tour (NAPT) which took place at Resorts World Las Vegas. The festival, which ran from November 4-12, was a massive success.
Around the same dates, PokerStars also hosted the UK & Ireland Poker Tour (UKIPT) in Nottingham which also ended on a high note.
It’s quite strange for an operator to run two major series simultaneously as it would force players to make a choice which would inevitably have an impact on the turnout. However, given that both events had taken place in two different continents where PokerStars has a significant foothold, the operator did not have a hard time hitting its targets.
Battle of Main Events
The NAPT returned after more than a decade, with the 2023 series headlined by the $1,650 buy-in, $1.5 million GTD Main Event. The tournament brought in 1,095 entries, generating $1,675,350 in total prize pool, smashing its initial guarantee by over $175,000. The tournament, which ran from November 6-11, was ultimately won by Sami Bechahed for $268,945 in top prize.
Meanwhile, in Nottingham, the UKIPT series featured a £1,100 Main Event which took place from November 5-13 and attracted a 1,227-entry field to generate £1,177,920 in total prize money. At the end, it was France’s Vincent Meli who ended up lifting the trophy along with a £159,325 payout, after a heads-up deal with Germany’s Patrice Brandt.
PokerStars would be happy with the performance of both tournaments and the entire series as a whole, and it won’t be surprising if the operator runs another edition of the NAPT and UKIPT in the near future given their success this year.
The Ultimate Comeback
Both the NAPT and UKIPT launched in the 2000s, becoming two of the most popular tournament series back in the day. However, industry challenges meant the two tours had to stop running. The last NAPT series was held in 2010, with PokerStars also dropping UKIPT in 2015.
Now, it’s safe to say that the two popular tours have made quite an epic comeback and will likely stick around in 2024.