ISPT Guaranteed Prize Pool Revoked

Poker Tournaments | estimated reading time
2012. September 11.
The International Stadiums Poker Tour (ISPT) had previously lowered the guaranteed prize pool and now “guaranteed” is gone, too, from the official website.
The International Stadiums Poker Tour (ISPT) is scheduled to launch in May 2013, planned to be the biggest tournament ever with 30,000 players. The tens of thousands of players will play simultaneously; however, not on the field but at touch screen pads in the seats of the stands. Once the player pool drops to 3,000, players will take their seats on the field at live tables – this is also the money bubble. The final table will be 10-handed.

ISPT

The enormous tournament had been advertised with an equally large guaranteed prize pool of $30 million, later reduced to a still handsome €20 million. However, this is not certain, either, anymore.

ISPT organisers had announced a press conference for 3 September to provide every detail of the tournament, in addition to presenting a Skrill (Moneybookers) receipt of the deposit of the guaranteed prize pool. The conference, though, had been cancelled and no piece of information has surfaced ever since. Meanwhile, all suggestions of a “guaranteed” prize pool are now gone from the ISPT website and the ads now only say “€20,000,000 Prize Pool”.

Renowned tournament director Stephen McClean said on the 2+2 forum that he, too, had been surprised to read the altered ads. Later, he added he had heard rumours of the €20 million prize pool standing for the entire ISPT instead of the main event, but he emphasised the unofficial nature of these news.

The modification of the previously announced prize pool draws an inevitable parallel to the PPT Grand Final, where the event campaign announced a guaranteed prize pool of €5 million but later, “guaranteed” was revoked from the ads and the organisers denied ever to had said anything like that. Eventually, a recording has surfaced, showing Director of Marketing Jean-Jacques Ichai talking about the PPT on the French national television, highlighting the €5 million guaranteed prize pool. The Partouche Group then gave in and added €700,000 to the €4.3 million amassed by the players.

ISPT has additional connections with Partouche to this “Game of Guarantees”. ISPT head Prosper Masquelier used to be the president of Partouche Interactive, next to being related to the Partouche family. Moreover, his father, Jean Masquelier, is the dircetor of two Partouche casinos, not to mention the fact that the Partouche Group was one of the firsts to line up behind ISPT and to offer satellites.

While no news are official yet, in case ISPT does not guarantee the €20 million prize pool, it could lead to another scandal: at the publication of this article, over 3,300 players have already registered for the Wembley Event and they are rightfully expecting a minimum prize pool of €20 million. For ISPT Ambassadors Sam Trickett, Patrik Antonius and Michael Mizrachi, this situation might become embarrassing as well.

From the ISPT leadership, Laurent Tapie, too, has previously confirmed the €20 million prize pool: “The guaranteed prize pool is 20 million Euros, the biggest prize pool ever guaranteed in the poker history,” Tapie stated on a press conference in June, as seen below:




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