The High Roller of the Year race is off and running. Each week, Poker Central is your home for the results, stats, and stories from the world’s biggest events. From 2019 U.S. Poker Open to Super High Roller Bowl VI and everything in between, Poker Central is your High Roller of the Year headquarters.

For the first time this season, High Roller of the Year points were earned outside the PokerGO Studio and for the first time this season, Sean Winter is back on top.

Three qualifying events ran alongside the World Poker Tour’s L.A. Poker Classic, including two $25,000 events with meaningful multipliers. Winter recorded a podium finish in the second Commerce High Roller to retake the 2019 HROY lead from David Peters. The USPO Champion did not travel to LAPC, while some High Roller Triple Crown winners did.

The current top-five is shown below and more High Roller of the Year information, including an upcoming schedule, can be found here.

Couples Retreat

The L.A. Poker Classic didn’t get off to the best start for Rainer Kempe and Maria Ho. The 2016 Super High Roller Bowl champion was one of the first players eliminated from the LAPC and Maria Ho is apparently still trying to make PokémonGO happen. Their poor LAPC luck was short lived though. Kempe won the first Commerce High Roller and Ho won the second, picking up $276,000 and her first High Roller win on her birthday.

This isn’t the first time the couple has shared the winner’s circle during the same series. Last year, Kempe and Ho went to South Africa and bookended the WPTDeepstacks Johannesburg stop with victories. This is the first time that they’ve shared a spot in the HROY top-10 though. Ho is currently ranked 9th, ahead of Kempe thanks to a bigger payout in the second $25,000 High Roller.

Winter Returns

After leading the High Roller of the Year race through nine events of the U.S. Poker Open, Sean Winter was pipped at the end. David Peters’ USPO $100,000 Main Event win gave him the series title and $100,000 prize, but Winter is now back on top after a 3rd place finish in Tuesday’s $25,000 event.

If Looks Could Kill: Behind Sean Winter’s Stare

The only thing more impressive than Winter’s return is Winter’s start to the 2019 season. Through 13 events, he’s cashed six times and won once. Winter has earned just over $865,000 and will likely keep the HROY lead through the next set of qualifying events unless David Peters picks up more than one win later this month. 

Quick Hits

Poker Masters champion Ali Imsirovic moved into the top-10 with a 4th place finish in the first $25KFormer GPI Female Player of the Year Kristen Bicknell recored her second HROY cash of 2019 in the second $25K. Bicknell finished 2nd for $180,070, she is currently ranked 13thBicknell is tied with Manig Loeser on 270 pointsLoeser recored his third HROY cash of 2019 in the second $25KKeith Tilston rounds out the top-15Seth Davies rounds out the top-25.

Looking Ahead

The High Roller of the Year race continues in March with ARIA High Roller Series events. Dates and multiplier information is provided below:

Event Date Location HROY Multiplier
$10,000 No Limit Hold’em March 21, 2019 ARIA Resort & Casino 1
$25,000 No Limit Hold’em March 22, 2019 ARIA Resort & Casino 1.5
$25,000 No Limit Hold’em March 23, 2019 ARIA Resort & Casino 1.5

Follow Poker Central for weekly High Roller of the Year updates and subscribe to watch High Roller of the Year qualifying events exclusively on PokerGO. A complete HROY schedule can be found here and more information about the year-long points race can be found here.

PokerGO, Sean Winter, Maria Ho, David Peters, Manig Loeser, ARIA High Roller Series, Kristen Bicknell, Rainer Kempe, High Roller of the Year, L.A. Poker Classic, LAPC, Commerce Casino