David Lloyd cruises to victory at 2008 CPC

The handshake
Sol Bergren congratulating David R. Lloyd on his victory at the 2008 CPC.

Perhaps the only thing that could make a luxurious cruise around the Caribbean even more spectacular is winning a big buy-in poker tournament while you're sailing, and that's exactly what David R. Lloyd pulled off yesterday.

Lloyd outlasted 111 players to win $91,200 and become the 2008 Caribbean Poker Classic Champion.

Lloyd entered the final table second in chips but quickly went to work winning pots left and right. His strong play secured him a spot in heads-up play against Sol Bergren. He made short work of the younger Bergren in the match, and finally landed the knock-out blow when his Q-5 outraced Bergren's A-4.

Most had chip leader Mark Phillips pegged to go all the way at the tournament, as he had been running extremely well and had accumulated $373,500 chips to throw around at the final. It wasn't to be: Lloyd quickly doubled through Phillips in the early stages of the final table, and Phillips eventually busted fourth.

There were a couple of big changes to the CPC this year. The first was that it was held on a cruise ship instead of at the St. Kitts Resort & Royal Beach Casino Marriott. The second change was the buy-in being cut down from $6,000 to just $2,700. As a result the prize pool decreased to $276,450.

It seems like the tournament was still a success for organizers, however, with qualifiers benefiting from some prime tropical island-hopping while the tournament was taking place.

In the past the event has drawn such players as Peter Jepsen, Kristy Gazes, Nicolas Levy, Dave Colclough and Kathy Liebert. The tournament peaked in 2007 when 153 players combined to make a prize pool of $1 million (with some help from the event's sponsors). Scandinavian Brian Jensen was the lucky player who took down the first-place prize of $237,500.

One thing is certain: with $91,200 in his pocket, Lloyd can now afford to go on several cruises. To learn more about the 2008 CPC check out tournament reporter Matt Showell's extensive coverage, which includes live updates, photos and recaps of the event.

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