WPT Descends Upon the Sunshine State

Randy Dorfman.

The World Poker Tour made its first ever stop in the State of Florida Wednesday.

A total of 406 players entered the $10,000 WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida, just North of Miami.

Registration remains open until 12 p.m. ET Thursday when Day 2 begins, but WPT Executive Tour Director Matt Savage has already confirmed that with over 400 players, first place will pay at least $1 million.

Local Floridian and 2011 Aussie Millions finalist Randy Dorfman continued his hot start to the year by building a 160,000 stack - good enough for the overnight lead.

Dorfman, who brought the chip lead into the final table at the Aussie Millions but could finish no better than fifth for AUD $325,000, followed that up with a win in a $5,100 No-Limit Hold'em side event at the L.A. Poker Classic in February.

After booking a few small cashes in 2007 and 2008, Dorfman really burst onto the live tournament scene in 2009 with a runner-up finish to Vanessa Rousso in the €25,000 High Roller event at the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo.

That $552,239 score still marks his career best, but Dorfman has matched that already this year with $602,006 in live tournament earnings just four months into 2011.

Other well known names near the top of the chip counts include Todd Terry, Joe Serock, Thayer Rasmussen, Noah Schwartz, Steve Brecher, Matt Brady, and Ali Eslami.

A total of 290 players survived the day.

The WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown runs through May 2.

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