The 2023 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) got under way today at the all new Baha Mar resort in Nassau, in the Bahamas.
As you probably know, it wasn’t always here. For more than a decade, the event was synonymous with the Atlantis Resort, just down the road in Paradise Island.
But it wasn’t always there either.
The first PCA, back in 2004, took place on a cruise ship. That was back before poker tournaments needed the kind of space only previously reserved for global sales conferences. It’s pretty quaint now to think you could hold a poker tournament of the PCA’s size on any moving vessel.
In case you’re in any doubt as to the true size of this tournament, and the position it occupies in the broader poker firmament, the PCA stats tell a fairly convincing story.
This is the 17th running of the PCA, comfortably one of the longest-running tournaments in world poker (pandemic years excluded).
Combined prize pools for those tournaments will this year surpass $130 million, while we will also pass 15,000 entries. The previous 16 renewals have racked up total entry figures of 14,934 so far.
PCA winners have so far won $24,099,600, so we’ll pass $25 million this year.
We obviously won’t know until next week whether the winner will join the roll call of champions who have qualified for the PCA after winning an online satellite, but that’s the method by which all of John Gale, Steve Paul-Ambrose, Poorya Nazari, Dimitar Danchev and Dominik Panka secured their entry to the tournament, before going on to win.
Registration is open on the tournament until the end of Level 10, which is two levels into Day 2. So we’re still a long way from knowing that full scale of the 2023 PCA. However, here are the key PCA stats for the tournament heading into this year’s contest.
- This is the 17th PCA
- PCA buy-ins have been $5K, $7.5K and $10K
- One entry to every PCA so far would have cost $147,500. If you add one further entry, for 2023, the total hits $157,500
- Five previous PCA winners have been online satellite qualifiers (John Gale, Steve Paul-Ambrose, Poorya Nazari, Dimitar Danchev, Dominik Panka). Two won live satellites (Harrison Gimbel, John Dibella).
- Winners have come from eight countries: USA (7 winners); Canada (3); Denmark, UK, France, Bulgaria, Poland, Argentina (1 each)
PCA STATS 2004-2019
Main Event entries: 14,934
Main Event prize pools: $128,926,930
Main Event first prizes: $24,099,600
Biggest field: 2011 – 1,560 entries
Biggest prize pool: 2011 – $15,132,000
Biggest winner’s prize: Poorya Nazari, 2009 – $3,000,000*
*It is rumoured that Nazari arranged a deal when two (or maybe three) players were left. However, reporting restrictions at the time mean we do not have details of any off-the-table arrangement.
Here are the complete results for the previous PCA renewals. PokerStars Blog was in attendance at every PCA so far, with the exception of the very first. Tournament recaps vary in quality (and various relaunches have accounted for many of the old images). But click on the years below to read tournament reports.