A 22-year-old student from Germany named Pius Heinz has won the 2011 World Series of Poker championship and the series' biggest cash prize in history: over $8,700,000.
Pius Heinz is the new World Series of Poker champ. To win the 2011 WSOP Main Event, the 22-year-old student from Cologne, Germany had to outlast a playing field of 6,863 people, the last of which was runner-up, Martin Staszko, a 35-year-old from the Czech Republic, who $5.4 million for his second place effort. Heinz, meanwhile, took down the largest grand prize in the history of the WSOP, a whopping $8.7 million. Actually, to be precise the prize was $8,715,638.
Starting last July at the Las Vegas Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino, the event paused once the final table of 9 players, or the November Nine, was determined, to be resumed last weekend at the nearby Penn & Teller theater.
It was a brutal battle to the finish, with Heinz and Staszko playing more than 100 hands heads-up that lasted more than 6 hours, with the final hand being dealt just fifteen minutes after midnight, Monday morning, November 11, 2011.
The field this year was the 3rd largest in WSOP history, with 85 different countries represented. Over 96% of the playing field was male, while the last woman standing was Erika Moutinho of the United States who finished 29th.
Heinz was already the first German player ever to make the final table of a WSOP main event. So of course he's now also the first German to win the WSOP main event gold bracelet.