James Hess Wins $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold’em Championship WSOP 2011

James Hess Wins WSOP 2011 $1,000 Senior No-Limit Hold'emCalifornia’s James Hess has lifted the $557,435 top prize and a gold bracelet for winning the $1,000 seniors (50 or older) no-limit hold’em championship at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) 2011 in Las Vegas.

The three-day event in the Amazon Room started out with a massive 3,752 entrants to create a prize pool of $3,376,800 and a top prize of $557,435, which Hess lifted after beating Richard Harwood, who is also from California, in heads-up play.

The event at the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino also saw the 396th-placed finisher collect $1,823.

Oregon’s Craig Koch went out in third as his chip stack began to reach a critically low level. He knew that he had to double-up soon or be blinded out, so – after folding down to just 400,000 in chips for four big blinds – Koch moved all-in once Hess raised to 300,000.

Koch made the call with Qs-6d, hoping to hold live cards, but was left deflated when Hess turned over Qd-Jh.

The complete board read Qc-8c-8h-7c-2h to give both a pair of queens but Hess the better kicker, and that was Koch gone in third place for $248,971.

Now heads-up, the final hand of a long day saw Harwood call from the button and Hess check his option from the big blind.

The flop showed 6h-9s-6d and Hess led out for 200,000 in chips. But Harwood then raised to one million, only for Hess to casually announce a raise to two million. Harwood then went all-in and Hess, naturally, called.

Hess showed 10s-6c for trip sixes, while Harwood held 10d-9d for two-pair. The turn came the Qc and the river showed 3s to end Harwood’s challenge, although he did collect $342,407 for his runners-up spot.

Top 10 placings and payouts at the WSOP 2011 $1,000 Seniors (50 or older) No-Limit Hold’em Championship:

1. James Hess (USA) – $557,435

2. Richard Harwood (USA) –  $342,407

3. Craig Koch (USA) – $248,971

4. Joseph Bolnick (USA) – $182,347

5. Gregory Alston (USA) – $134,801

6. James Jewell (USA) – $100,594

7. Charles Cohen (USA) – $75,775

8. Walter Shawne Browne (USA) – $57,608

9. Leo Whitt (USA) – $44,202

10. Brett Tannenbaum (USA) – $34,206