Raul Mestre Grabs Lead on Day 3 of San Remo Main Event, 39 Remain

Raul Mestre is atop the chip counts after Day 3 of the 2014 EPT San Remo Main Event, with hopes of a second career EPT final table. (Photo c/o Neil Stoddart/PokerStars Blog)

Raul Mestre is atop the chip counts after Day 3 of the 2014 EPT San Remo Main Event, with hopes of a second career EPT final table. (Photo c/o Neil Stoddart/PokerStars Blog)

In the 98 Main Events in the history of the European Poker Tour, there has never been a champion hailing from Spain or a two-time champion. With 39 players remaining in the 2014 EPT San Remo Main Event, both of these scenarios are still very much in play.

Raul Mestre’s been close before, having finished fourth on home soil at EPT Barcelona in 2011, and he put himself in position for another big run after Day 3 in San Remo. Mestre bagged the biggest stack of the day, ending play Thursday with 942,000. Andrija Martic, who has only one recorded live cash of $2,876 to his credit sits second with 885,000, followed by Day 2 chipleader Lukas Berglund (867,000), Jorma Nuutinen (852,000) and Olivier Busquet (806,000) to round out a tightly packed top-5.

Three players with an EPT title to their credit found their way to the end of the night on Day 3 in San Remo. Vicky Coren (16th), Dimitar Danchev (25th) and Michael Tureniec (30th) each have some work to do if they hope to break the curse of former champions. Rocco Palumbo, less than a month removed from his win at WPT Venice, still has a chance to complete poker’s Triple Crown with a second major title in his home country of Italy with a win in this event.

Three of the four Americans who made Day 3 of this tournament advanced to Day 4, with Busquet, Jordan Westmorland (10th) and Zachary Korik (22nd) each hoping to become the first American EPT champion since Steve O’Dwyer won the 2013 Grand Final. Stephen Chidwick, Alex Kravchenko and Giacomo Fundaro each hold on to championship dreams of their own after advancing to Day 4.

The money bubble burst fairly early in the day, but Mickey Petersen, Season 6 EPT Grand Final champion Nicolas Chouity and 2011 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Pius Heinz each failed to record a payday. Jan Sjavik (77th), Victor Ramdin (73rd), Roberto Romanello (64th), Johnny Lodden (61st), Alex Bilokur (48th) and Dominik Nitsche (46th) each managed to make the money before succumbing.

No official announcement has been made, but the antepenultimate day of EPT Main Events typically see fields reduced to either three tables (24 players) or two tables (16 players), depending on time. Saturday will be the playdown day, and the final table will be held on Sunday afternoon, live-streamed with hole cards via PokerStars.tv.

2014 EPT San Remo Main Event – End of Day 3 Chip Counts

  1. Raul Mestre – 942,000
  2. Andrija Martic – 885,000
  3. Lukas Berglund – 867,000
  4. Jorma Nuutinen – 852,000
  5. Olivier Busquet – 806,000
  6. Andrew Benelli – 721,000
  7. Eros Nastasi – 711,000
  8. Jeff Hakim – 651,000
  9. Andreas Goeller – 643,000
  10. Jordan Westmorland – 638,000
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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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