The 2023 European Poker Tour Barcelona festival is turning out to be a blockbuster in terms of prize pools and turnouts. The festival kicked off to flyer with the €1,100 buy-in Estrellas Poker Tour main event attracting an unprecedented 7,398 entries, setting a new record for the largest live poker tournament in Poker Stars history. Played out over the course of eight days inside Casino Barcelona, the tournament surpassed the 6,313 turnout for this same tournament held in 2022 (a 17 percent increase) and generated €7,102,080. The gigantic prize pool was shared by the top 1,109 finishers, with France’s Lucien Cohen topping the record-setting field and securing the €676,230 top prize.
The 59-year-old Parisian began the final day as the massive chip leader and dominated from start to finish. He showcased exemplary skills, busting India’s Ankit Ahuja (5th – $192,035), Danilo Velasevic (4th – $250,657), and Petros Karadimos (3rd – $318,190) to enter the heads-up with more than a 4:1 chip lead over his opponent D’Alessio who managed to close the gap but could not go all the way.
On the final hand, Cohen raised to 5,000,000 on the button with Kd 8c and and D’Alessio called with Kh 4d. The board ran out Kh Js 10d 8d 7c, eliminating D’Alessio in second place for €415,320.
Cohen walked away with the coveted Poker Stars trophy and €676,230. This historic victory for the Frenchman came twelve years after his breakout win at the European Poker Tour Deauville in 2011 when he defeated (then future) WSOP Main Event champion Martin Jacobson heads-up to take home the EPT Deauville trophy for a career-high €880,000. With his latest victory that marks his career’s second largest score, Cohen surges to more than $2.5 million in lifetime live cashes.
Final Table Payouts (EURO)
- Lucien Cohen – €676,230
- Ferdinando D’Alessio – €415,320
- Petros Karadimos – €294,620
- Danilo Velasevic – €232,090
- Ankit Ahuja – €177,810
- Avihai Smadga – €136,850
- Parker Talbot – €105,590
- Igor Kaufman – €81,230