Qualifier Eyes $1 Million Bonus at WPT London

Lawyer turned PartyPoker.it pro Giovanni Safina is in the lead at WPT London.

A pair of PartyPoker qualifiers are making a run at the WPT London Poker Classic title.

Day 3 ended Thursday at the Palm Beach Casino in Mayfair with 18 players left and PartyPoker.it pro Giovanni Safina on top.

Safina, a 44-year lawyer from Palermo, finished third in the PartyPoker.com Premier League IV, cashing for $156,000 and winning a $100,000 Team PartyPoker.com contract after qualifying for the event online.  

However, his run is just the lede. The real story is 21-year-old Swede Kristoffer Thorsson sitting third in chips.

Kristoffer won the Amsterdam Master Classics this past November for €636,120 and qualified online for WPT London, meaning that if he wins, he’s entitles a part of a $1 million bonus from PartyPoker.

Kristoffer would earn $500,000 and the other PartyPoker London qualifiers would share the other $500,000.

“There is still a long way to go but knowing about the extra $1 million payout has given me extra pressure,” he said. “I know the other players are desperate for me to win and I will be doing my best!”

While names like Erik Seidel, Phil Ivey and Huck Seed all dotted the leader board early in London, the final 18 is filled with a group of lesser known players.

Perhaps the most recognizable is 2010 EPT Deauville champ Jake Cody, who currently sits fourth in chips.

WPT London drew 171 players creating an £820,800 prize pool. A total of 16 places will be paid with £273,783 reserved for first.

Play resumes at 12 p.m. London time Friday. A winner will be crowned Saturday.

In the meantime, the £15,000 televised high rollers event starts Friday at 3 p.m., with registration open until 9.30 p.m.

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