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Varkonyi "Runs Away" with Extreme Poker Title in Arctic Circle

31 March 2006

KEMI, Finland - Robert Varkonyi, the 2002 World Series of Poker Main Event Champion, won InterPoker.com's latest Extreme Poker Challenge on Wednesday, beating Finland's Juha Helppi in a tournament played outside in sub-zero temperatures.

Helppi, who won the first Extreme Poker title under water in the Caribbean Sea, chose the venue for the event, opting for a home ice advantage in his native country.

Players who lost all of their chips early in the tournament could rebuy by trading in their coats, and Varkonyi used his rebuy just three hands into the tournament after going bust against online qualifier Daniel Stein. He played the rest of the tournament in a T-shirt, running laps between hands to stay warm.

After about an hour and a half, Varkonyi and Helppi had vanquished the four Internet qualifiers to face each other heads up. In the tournament's final hand, Varkonyi hit top pair on the flop with his 10-9, eventually making a full house to claim the Extreme Poker title.

"Winning this title makes my suffering through the most excruciating cold I've ever experienced worth it," Varkonyi said in an InterPoker.com press release. "Juha really gave me a run for the title, and my hat and coat are off to him."

Varkonyi qualified for the 2006 Extreme Poker Championship, to be held in a sunken ship off the coast of St. Kitts, where the first Extreme Poker tournament was held. Helppi had already qualified for the tournament by winning the first Extreme Poker title.

InterPoker.com has announced that the next Extreme Poker event will be held in a plane 10,000 feet above the Las Vegas desert. Dubbed "Loser's Leap," players who bust out of the tournament will be forced to parachute down to the ground. Players can earn a spot in the qualifying round of the Loser's Leap tournament by claiming a World Series of Poker seat through InterPoker.com's online satellite tournaments.

In his previous life, Aaron Todd was a sports journalist by day and a poker player by night. He can now be found covering the poker beat for Casino City and making horrendously unsuccessful bluffs in his home game. Write to Aaron at aarontodd@casinocity.com.

Varkonyi "Runs Away" with Extreme Poker Title in Arctic Circle is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.
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Best of Aaron Todd
Aaron Todd

Home-game hotshot Aaron Todd was an editor/writer at Casino City for nearly eight years, and is currently the Assistant Director of Athletics for Communications and Marketing at St. Lawrence University, his alma mater. While he is happy to play Texas Hold'em, he'd rather mix it up and play Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw, and Badugi.

Aaron Todd

Home-game hotshot Aaron Todd was an editor/writer at Casino City for nearly eight years, and is currently the Assistant Director of Athletics for Communications and Marketing at St. Lawrence University, his alma mater. While he is happy to play Texas Hold'em, he'd rather mix it up and play Omaha Hi/Lo, Razz, Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw, and Badugi.