The Party Poker Irish Poker Championship Tour recently concluded and the results are in for the event. Jay Renehan finished at the top of the league leaderboard, Galway Casino owner and EPT Barcelona runner-up Fintan Gavin finished second, and Michael Graydon took third place.

The Party Poker Irish Poker Championship Tour began league play on August 1st at Galway’s Eglinton Casino and finished up on December 13th at the Red Cow Hotel in Dublin. Renehan earned €5,000 for the win, Gavin received €2,000 for finishing runner-up, and Graydon made €1,000 for taking third place.

This series of land-based tournaments is a warm-up for the main event in the Irish Poker Championship which starts on January 2nd, 2009. The Irish Poker Championship will be held at the Radisson SAS Hotel and is the first major European tournament of the year.

Many of poker’s biggest names have already been confirmed as participants and the list includes Padraig Parkinson, Andy Black, Scott Gray, Noel Furlong, Donnacha O’Dea, Ciaran O’Leary, Dave “Devilfish” Ulliott, Mike Sexton, Neil Channing, Liam Flood, and the 2008 Irish Poker Championship winner Jude Ainsworth.

Last year, Jude Ainsworth was able to defeat a field of over 400 players and he earned €180,000 for the win. The results of the top 8 and the prize money for each player were as follows:

1. Jude Ainsworth – €180,000
2. Michael McCool – €100,000
3. Tommy Watson – €60,000
4. Trevor Dineen – €35,000
5. Michael Moran – €25,000
6. Keith McFadden – €18,000
7. Glen McCabe – €15,000
8. Bernard Brady – €12,000

Party Poker is still giving people chances to win their way into the Irish Poker Championship through $5,000 prize packages (about €3,900). These prize packages can be won through the Irish Poker Championship Qualifier at Party Poker and they include the $2,800 buy-in to the Main Event, $1,200 in hotel accommodations at the Radisson Hotel Galway, and $1,000 in spending money.

People can either buy directly into the Irish Poker Championship Qualifier or win their way into the event through one of the many satellites that Party Poker is running; some of the satellites are as cheap as $1 to enter. The qualifier and satellites will run until the Irish Poker Championship begins on January 2nd.

In addition to sponsoring the Irish Poker Championship, Party Poker also sponsors many other major land-based and online tournaments. Their recent King of the Table tournament broke the site record for the most money paid out with $2 million.

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