Earlier this week, during Day 3 of the Super High Roller Bowl, all eyes were on Rainer Kempe. The defending champion had navigated two days of the biggest event of the year and put himself in a position to make back-to-back final tables in the $300,000 buy-in event. He eventually bowed out a few spots short of that final table but fast forward a few days and Kempe is on the precipice of another massive final table.
The High Roller for One Drop returned with 23 players for Day 3 of the WSOP’s most expensive bracelet event and with the field down to 13, with Day 3 feature table action exclusively streaming on PokerGO, Kempe is in the thick of the action. He is currently working a top-five stack and while he was unable to have Super High Roller Bowl lightning strike twice, last year’s victory has set him up for future success.
“It was the biggest title I’ve ever won and will likely be the biggest title I’ll ever win, for quite a while.” Kempe said when we caught up to him earlier today, adding, “It changed the way people perceived me in the poker world and I feel like I’ve gotten a lot out of it.”
Part of what Kempe has gotten out of winning one of poker’s most illustrious titles is the ability to continue to play at the highest level. Over the last year, Kempe has added over $2.5 million to his resume, with most of those scores coming in High Roller events from around the world.
Off the felt, his 2016 victory has also made him popular amongst the fans around the WSOP. Kempe joked, “Yesterday, I signed the second poker card of my life.” In case you were wondering, it was the ace of clubs.
Playing bigger and commanding a crowd off the felt has not changed Kempe’s approach to tournament poker though and neither has the opportunity to make another massive final table in the High Roller for One Drop.
“I’ve always thought about each hand.” Kempe said when asked about how he approaches these extremely tough High Roller events. He went on to add, “It’s such a long tournament, you don’t really think about winning, how long it has been since you last won, you just take it one decision at a time. It’s been working out for me over the last year.”
It certainly has, as Kempe put together a stellar World Poker Tour run to claim WPT California Swing honors earlier this year and has two huge ARIA High Roller victories within the last calendar year. Now, after recording a small cash in the $10,000 Tag Team event, Kempe could be a day away from picking up another massive win and more ace of spades autographs could certainly follow.