Poker Boot Camp
hits Las Vegas

Feb 14, 2005 5:31 AM

Ever wish you knew the poker pros’ secrets for winning multimillion-dollar pots? Before now, the only way to gain such experience was to invest thousands of dollars and hours in high-stakes poker games.

But when the new two-day WPT Boot Camp comes to Las Vegas later this month, players will have the chance to learn directly from poker champions and the World Poker Tour (WPT) hosts, enough card-playing skills to put them on their way to championship play.

A fantasy camp for poker enthusiasts, WPT Boot Camp is designed to give amateurs an intensive immersion in poker strategy over a weekend. Instruction comes from WPT commentators Mike Sexton and Vincent Van Patten, as well as poker expert Alex "The Insider" Outhred, the man behind the camera who analyzes all hands played at WPT final tables.

The basic instructional group is augmented with a slate of poker champions. A portion of the coursework is also based on Sexton’s new book, WPT: Shuffle Up and Deal, which is scheduled for release in March. WPT Boot Camp students will receive a copy of the book upon graduation.

The first WPT Boot Camp will be conducted at The Mirage, Feb. 26-27 and April 2-3. Other camps have been scheduled for the Commerce Casino in Los Angeles and Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, Florida. See the World Poker Tour web site for a complete schedule.

Each of the Boot Camps is limited to 50 students, who must pony up $1,495 in tuition. The top students who perform well in tournament play at the Boot Camp will be rewarded with entry into a WPT-sponsored satellite tournament.

For their money, Boot Camp attendees will be tutored in all aspects of competitive tournament Texas Hold ”˜em poker. Coursework is carefully constructed in order to compress the poker learning curve.

Sessions feature an integrated curriculum that includes live lectures, archived WPT video footage, game play, and personal secrets from poker superstars. Students receive hands-on training filled with tips and tools to help them better understand the "tells," "reads," and strategies integral to improving their game.

For starters, students learn to identify their unique skills and the skills of opponents. They then explore the mathematics of poker, followed by instruction specific to Texas Hold ”˜em. Lastly, students will get instruction on how to approach tournament play.

WPT Boot Camp is the brainchild of Ron Rubens and Steven Berman, co-founders of River Gaming, LLC. The duo developed the program after years of work in the gaming industry and prior experience producing instructional seminars. River Gaming is a licensee of WPT Enterprises, Inc., which holds an ownership interest in the WPT Boot Camp.