Latin American Poker Tour kicks off

May 7, 2008 7:04 AM

By GT Staff | *Latin American Poker Tour’s inaugural event in Rio expected to attract at least 300 international players.

A group of top U.S. players samba’d their way down to Rio for the inaugural Latin American Poker Tour (LAPT) event in Rio de Janeiro, May 3-5.

The $2,500 No Limit Hold’em tournament was expected to be sold out, promising an unforgettable experience for the expected 300 players.

The total prize pool was expected to reach $750,000 not to mention a big pay-day for the first-place finisher.

"I am as passionate about the LAPT as Latin Americans are about life," said LAPT President Glenn Cadematori. "Poker is exploding in Latin America and the game is more than ready for its own major poker tour. It’s one of the fastest-growing poker regions and in every regard, the LAPT is going to put Latin America on the map as the newest hot-spot to play high-stakes championship poker."

Among the top players from the U.S. to make the trip were Vanessa Rousso, Chris Moneymaker, Greg Raymer, Victor Ramdin, Isabelle Mercier, Chad Brown and Gavin Griffin.

Team PokerStars Pros from the region include Andre Akkari from Brazil, Humberto Brenes from Costa Rica.

The tournament is being held at the Intercontinental Hotel, one of Rio’s most luxurious venues located on Rio’s exclusive São Conrado beach.

"LAPT Rio is a truly prestigious event that, along with other LAPT stops, will bring Latin American poker into a new era – where many hidden poker talents have yet to be revealed," said LAPT Tournament Director Mike Ward. "The LAPT Rio will be a truly memorable poker experience for everyone."

The next stop on the LAPT will be San Jose in Costa Rica from May 22-24. More than 140 players have already won a seat for this event online with PokerStars. Satellites for Costa Rica are running until May 11, 2008.

The third and final stop in Season 1 is Punta del Este in Uruguay from August 7-9. Click for more information.