On January 4th, 2009, it all began with 1,341 players vying it out to win the $35,000 grand prize at the North Dakota State Poker Championship. After hours of deciding on whether or not to hold'em or fold'em, the field was chopped to 10, then 2 and the rest, as they say, is poker history. Sam Dickson from Saskatchewan outwitted Shane Duchscherer of Minot to become the first Canadian Poker Champion in the tournament's five year history.
But he said that he was not really that confident going into the final card hand. Dickson said that he thought that Duscherer had the better card hand. Dickson's victory marks the end to a tiring fifteen hour day for both poker players and those managing the event. Tournament Director Mitch Schock said that this was their best tournament ever because everyone did their part. Dickson hopes to compete with Mitch Schock in the World Series of Poker someday.
This year's event was held in memory of 2007 champion Curtis Langford who died last August of Pancreatic cancer. Most participants donated a part of their winnings to the Langford family, like Chastity Askvig, whose astonishing run to the final table was about honoring a lost friend. Askvig became the first female poker player to finish in the top 10 and utilized the advice and lessons that she previously received from Langford that she must always persevere.
The event has grown every year as participants from 10 states and all over the Canada trooped to Minot this week. The three day poker tournament attracted thousands of spectators and has become a must see poker event in the region.
02/01/2009 19:01 PM