Peruvian Diego Ventura has been a force in online poker for several years.
Among other feats that have branded him one of the best in the online world, he's made the final table of the Sunday Million twice.
Ventura started to play more live poker in 2014 and is already Peru's all-time leading money winner at just over $1m.
The bulk of that total, of course, came when he just missed one of the world’s top titles and came second in the PCA main event in 2015.
At the time he almost missed the event entirely as the US denied him a transit visa after he’d won his ticket in the last online satellite.
He did eventually make it to Atlantis and went all the way to the heads-up, where he lost to Kevin Schultz. The $907,080 that he won is the largest prize money a Peruvian player has ever won.
Ventura at PCA
Vamos a Las Vegas!
A lot has changed since then. Ventura now has his own website and his own team of players – called Team Ventura – to travel the global poker circuit with him.
Only last week Ventura had another decent live cash when he finished 13th in the €10k High Roller event in Dublin.
While the PCA was the biggest event Ventura has played in until now, that will change this summer as the no. 1 Peruvian on the GPI will play the 2016 WSOP main event.
Less than 24 hours after his cash in Dublin Ventura played a satellite on 888poker. He registered for a $1,050 direct satellite with 87 players, among them 888 Team Pro Dominik Nitsche.
The top six all got a WSOP main event package consisting of the main event ticket, five nights at the beautiful 4-star Vdara hotel and $1,500 for expenses.
When the final cards were dealt and Ventura had finished third, he became one of the first players this year to qualify online for the biggest poker event in the world.
It’ll be his first appearance at the World Series of Poker. And it made him very happy:
Nos vamos a las vegas ! paquete shipped! weee— Diego Ventura (@DieVentura) February 22, 2016
Seven Steps to WSOP Package
Ventura has been taking advantage of the games on 888poker, where he plays as Diegovac, as he took down the Sunday Challenge earlier this month for over $20,000.
If you want to as well, or win your way to the WSOP yourself, the 888poker steps program can help you reach your goals. Each time you win one of the steps you’ll gain entry to the next level.
WSOP dream actualized.
This is what the Steps look like:
- Step 1: Buy-in 1c; 1 in 10 wins Step 2 ticket
- Step 2: Buy-in 10c; 1 in 10 wins Step 3 ticket
- Step 3: Buy-in $1; 1 in 5 wins Step 4 ticket
- Step 4: Buy-in $5; 1 in 6 wins Step 5 ticket
- Step 5: Buy-in $30; 1 in 5 wins Step 6 ticket
- Step 6: Buy-in $160: 1 in 6 wins Step 7 ticket
- Step 7: Buy-in $1,050; 1 in 7 wins WSOP main event package
If you make it all the way through to Step 7, this is the structure:
- Stack: 10,000 chips
- Blind Levels: 20 min
- 1st Blind Level: 25/50
Last year Thomas Yates of Rhodes managed to qualify for exactly one cent. He climbed the seven steps, won the Main Event package, flew to Las Vegas, played the main event, finished in 486th place and won $19,500.