2018 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
$360 Big O
Prize Pool: $27,900
August 7, 2018
On Monday night, Gabriel Ramos was driving back home after busting the $360 pot-limit Omaha in ninth place. He was disappointed with his finish and was determined to do better on Tuesday.
He did just that.
Ramos won his second Hard Rock trophy in the early hours of Wednesday morning. The North Carolina native defeated a 93-entry field in the $360 Big O, winning his second Hard Rock title and $8,371.
“I drove 40 minutes home and the whole way I was saying to myself ‘I’m going to come back and win this Big O no matter what it takes,'” said Ramos after his victory.
Ramos came to South Florida after a strong showing at the World Series of Poker. He cashed four times, including a runner-up finish for $130,850 in the $1,500 mixed omaha hi-lo event, which featured limit Omaha hi-lo, pot-limit Omaha hi-lo and Big O.
After competing with and beating some of the best in the world, Ramos came to South Florida with his confidence at an all-time high.
“I felt pretty confident about my game here,” said Ramos. “[I was] just laser-focused the whole time.”
As they trimmed the final table from eight down to just Ramos, the cream rose to the top, with Ramos having to get past local pro Zachary Milchman, who also finished second in a WSOP bracelet event, and John Holley, a seasoned pro that was fresh off a victory in the Seniors event 24 hours earlier.
The talent that Ramos got through only made the victory sweeter.
“Four-handed we had some pretty good players,” said Ramos. “So, it was nice to beat them out. I actually got to knock somebody out with my favorite holdings, queen-six. On a queen-queen-six flop, I had queen-six for a boat.”
Ramos knocked out Stephanie Chung in fourth place with that boat. It was the icing on the cake of a run of cards that saw Ramos run away with the chip lead four-handed. A chip lead that he attributes to his deep run at the WSOP in the mixed Omaha hi-lo event.
“We played a final table for almost a day and a half, so there was a lot of great experience there,” said Ramos. “I opened up my range a lot more four-handed. Before that, they probably looked at me as a tighter player and wasn’t capable of having certain holdings.”
Ramos’ first Hard Rock victory came in the $300 OE event at last April’s Hard Rock Poker Showdown. It’s clear that the hi-lo split pot games are his specialty.
“I put in a lot of work throughout the year,” said Ramos about his hi-lo game. “Definitely a lot of discipline and making really good folds. Good folds at the right time that put yourself in a position to chip up big when you have a big hand.”
The 93-entry field paid out the top 12 spots. Here are a look at the results:
1st: Gabriel Ramos – $8,371
2nd: Zachary Milchman – $4,952
3rd: John Holley – $3,501
4th: Stephanie Chung – $2,581
5th: Michael Lee – $1,911
6th: Sylvain Bouchard – $1,465
7th: William Marsh – $1,144
8th: Stephen Esposito – $907
9th: Pete Walsworth – $767
10th: Claudangelo Beaudouin – $767
11th: Nathan Woodside – $767
12th: Christopher Gallaher – $767