Scotty Nguyen Challenge on track to break records

Scotty Nguyen

For the third consecutive year, the Cherokee Casino in Tulsa, Okla., is hosting the Scotty Nguyen Poker Challenge. The events so far this year are on track to break all previous poker attendance records in Oklahoma.

"The first few events have been well above our projections," said Tony Armstrong, senior manager of poker.

First up for the series of tournaments was the Jack 'n Jill event May 17, which brought couples to the poker tables to play as a team.

Clarence and Patsy Helms, married for 55 years, outlasted 188 other pairs in the No-Limit Texas Hold'em event to capture the top spot. They took home $11,849 for their win.

The next day brought two different No-Limit Hold'em events, the first of which was won by Chuck Thompson of Santa Cruz, Calif., and the second was won by Kole Twesme of Springfield, Mo.

Twesme received $19,878 for his win from the field of 327 players. Thompson bested a field of 309 players, including Clonie Gowen, to take home his $34,449 cash prize.

David Richardson, of Leonard, Texas, was the next winner crowned after the Pot-Limit Hold'em event played out May 19. He defeated a field of 188 players to pocket the $11,787 top prize.

There are still plenty events left to play in, including the $5,000 buy-in main event, which starts May 27.

During the days ahead, the casino also expects well-known poker pros and celebrities to make their way to Tulsa to try their hand at the tournaments. Some of players already confirmed are T.J. Cloutier.

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