It is a busy time of the year for poker players as the action at the 2017 World Series of Poker is heating up. A number of winners earned big paychecks this weekend and that's where we'll start our recap of the poker news of the week.
Gola Claims World Series of Poker Razz Event
Jason Gola of Chicago won his first gold bracelet by coming out on top in the 2017 WSOP $1,500 razz event. Gola needed a huge comeback to do so, though. After getting down to head-to-head action, he trailed David Baker with just 100,000 in his pot of chips compared to $3 million for Baker. Gola kept chipping away at the lead until he won the grand prize of $132,957 and the gold bracelet. Although Baker was quite disappointed, he ended up taking home $82,174. In third place was Bradley Ruben with $55,958, while Wendy Freedman was in fourth place with $38,847.
Also at the final table was Phil Hellmuth, who went into the WSOP Hall of Fame in 2007 and has won a record 14 bracelets. A few players were intimidated by the legend; he finished sixth with $19,865. But the event went to Gola, who won for the first time and obviously had the biggest payday of his career.
May Wins World Series of Poker Ladies Event
A lady from down under has come out on top. Heidi May, who hails from Australia, has won the WSOP $1,000 No Limit Hold'em ladies event for her first bracelet. May, who is 24, won $135,098 over a field of 718 players. She beat out Deborah Worley-Roberts, who won $83,459. Next was Jana De La Cerra in third place with $57,930, followed by Julie Dang in fourth place with $40,843. Rounding out the top five was Katherine Ansorge with $29,256.
It was the second win of May's career after winning a no limit event in Australia back in 2014 for $11,014. Without question, it was the biggest win of her career as this one comes with much more prestige. May is known for playing in cash games in Australia, but this tournament win might get her a few more invites to big-brand tournaments.
Gimbel Conquers $3000 No Limit Hold'em Event
We saw another first-time winner at the WSOP this week as Harrison Gimbel won his first bracelet with a victory in the $3,000 No Limit Hold'em event (Event #68). He held on to defeat Chance Kornuth, who won $399,132 in second place, while Ryan Van Sanford was next in third with $285,148. Rounding out the top five was John Griffin in fourth with $206,119, and then Christopher Farmer with $150,772.
It was the second win of the year for Gimbel as he also won a $1,100 No Limit Hold'em event in a Deepstack Extravaganza event in June. The Florida native won a $645,922 payday for his hard work, although that wasn't the biggest payday of his career. Back in January 2010, Gimbel won $2.2 million for a victory at a PokerStars event on the European Poker Tour. This week's win moves him into the Top 10 in Florida for all-time money winners.