After just two days of starting flights at the 2017 World Series of Poker main event, it looked like we might see a bit of a decline in the field. Day 1A drew just 795 entrants, and day 1B only rebounded to 2,164.
The WSOP needed a big turnout for day 1C, the final starting flight, and a whopping 4,262 players came through to participate in the $10,000 buy-in championship, the largest single-day field in main event history.
The 7,221 total entries make 2017 the third largest main event field ever, trailing just the 7,319 who registered in 2010, and the might-never-be-topped 8,773 in 2006.
The additional players represented a year-over-year increase of about 7 percent. In 2016, Qui Nguyen topped a field of 6,737 to win his first gold bracelet and the $8,005,310 first-place prize from an overall prize pool of $63,327,800.
Of course, when the field increases, so does the prize money. The 2017 edition of the main event will payout 1,084 players a minimum of $15,000. The final 72 runners are all guaranteed six-figures, and everyone who makes the final table will become millionaires. Of the $67,877,400 in the total prize pool, the lion’s share of $8,150,000 will go to the winner.
There are still more than 4,200 players left after the conclusion of the starting flights. Among the notables to bag huge stacks on day 1 were Morten Mortensen (276,000), Sam Grafton (231,600), Griffin Abel (226,000), Naoya Kihara (220,700), Adam Levy (220,700), Natasha Mercier (218,400), Brandon Meyers (216,000), Nick Maimone (213,200), Jonathan Little (211,300) and Brandon Adams (203,500).
Former main event winners still in the hunt include Johnny Chan, Scotty Nguyen, Phil Hellmuth, Joe Cada, Chris Ferguson, Qui Nguyen and Martin Jacobson, among others.
Day 1C players will now get a day off as the day 1A and 1B survivors return to the Rio for day 2 action on Tuesday.
For more coverage from the summer series, visit the 2017 WSOP landing page complete with a full schedule, news, player interviews and event recaps.