The World Series of Poker is not only the pinnacle of skillful poker play, it’s also the host for some fantastic prop betting. Professional poker players are renowned for wagering vast amounts of money on ludicrous challenges and dangerous tests of physical endurance. Most infamous are Brian Zembic winning a bet by undergoing an operation to install fake breasts, and Phil Ivey paying Erick Lindgren after he completed four consecutive rounds of golf in the blazing Vegas heat.
This latest WSOP contest has a more whimsical feel to it, but features two of the most legendary gamblers of all time. Late on WSOP Day 6, Doyle Brunson and Amarillo Slim convened for a mechanical scooter race through the halls of the Rio Hotel and Casino. The two elderly statesmen, 75 and 81 respectively, rely on their motorized transports to ferry them from table to table, and evidently a challenge was made as to who was the better pilot.
No concrete numbers were announced, but rumors set the figure somewhere between $2,000 and $50,000. Each rider was required to zoom down a casino hallway towards a ring of cones, which they would circle twice before returning back the start line. They raced individually with the winner pocketing the winnings. News of the wager spread like wildfire and before long an ESPN production crew were on hand to document proceedings.
Amarillo Slim set off first, whipping at his scooter as if riding a horse. His enthusiasm seemed to pay off, as he sped round the course in an electrifying 50.28 seconds. Doyle had a tough task ahead of him, especially considering his greater body mass and lower-performance vehicle. He made a valiant effort however, coming home with a time of 55 seconds.
Doyle, one of poker’s most recognizable faces, has been keeping busy this WSOP. He recently competed in the WSOP Champions Invitational, where 20 former main event winners convened for a special commemorative tournament. The winner would pocket a modest cash sum, as well as a 1970 Corvette Stingray and the brand new Binion Trophy.
“Texas Dolly” fought his way through a variety of past champions, but eventually bowed out in 8th place. In his final hand he tangled with 1993 champ Tom McEvoy and 1995 victor Dan Harrington. On a flop of 8c-10h-7h Doyle fired out a bet and was quickly raised by McEvoy. Harrington got out of the way before Doyle pushed his remaining chips in to call. He was looking for a third heart or an Ace with his Ah-2h, but in the end the cards didn’t come his way and McEvoy’s pocket Jacks held up.
He will also feature in a set of seminars with Mike Caro. These educational lectures have become a mainstay of the WSOP calendar and provide players young and old alike an insight into the minds of two poker greats. Caro, the self styled “Mad Genius of Poker”, formed the Mike Caro University of Poker, Gaming and Life Strategy in 1998, and has been dolling out his own unique brand of advice to players everywhere ever since. Doyle will be on hand for Q&As after the lessons are complete. Spots are available for anyone over 21 and will be distributed on a first come first served basis. Fees were originally set a $95, but have subsequently been waved. The full calendar is as follows:
June 13th, 10am: Mike Caro’s Best Hold’em and Tournament Advice
June 14th, 10am: Mike Caro’s Best Real World and Online Poker Advice
June 27th, 10am: Mike Caro’s Tells, Psychology and Manipulation
June 28th, 10am: Mike Caro’s Grand Poker Seminar: 50 Best Tip Countdown