A Palm Beach Kennel Club regular won $252,415 for losing at poker as the card room's bad beat jackpot finally hit after five months -- setting a state record for largest bad beat in a single room.
The player, identified only as "Roy," goes back to the days when poker rooms could offer only "quarter-50-cent" games. Roy held the 6-7 of hearts Monday afternoon and dealer Kevin Kerezman put out the 8-9-10 of hearts on the board, giving Roy a straight flush.
Another unidentified player at the table held the J-Q of hearts -- making for a higher straight flush.
“I said to the table, I think we have a Bad Beat,” a kennel club press release quoted Kerezman as saying. “Everyone was in shock, there was no noise, no cheering, just stunned silence.
“Dealing this hand is definitely a highlight of my poker dealing career,” he added.The state allowed poker rooms to offer bad-beat jackpots when it loosened the laws on July 1, 2007. On Dec. 1, 2009, the Seminole Tribe of Floridaupped the stakes with a "mega bad beat," one combined jackpot for its six rooms across the state.
That hit for a record $584,684 on Jan. 8, 2011, and most card rooms have discontinued the bad beat to offer "high hand" promotions, which often pay out $100 to $500 an hour, rather than a six-figure score every few weeks.
Palm Beach Kennel Club officials point out that their payout is the largest ever coming out of one poker room in Florida, last hitting on April 23.
“For it to go 154 days is incredible. Our business has benefitted immensely because of the bad beat,” said Tim Wright, a poker room manager. “We started to see a difference in late July when the Bad Beat was $250,000. As it kept growing, we got increasingly busier and even more so when it topped $500,000. We’ve seen lots of regulars, but also new players and players from out of town coming in to try to win.”
The kennel club's jackpot required a player who has at least four 10s lose to a better hand. The loser gets half the jackpot, the winner of the hand gets 25 percent ($126,208) and the six others sitting at the table share the rest ($21,036 each).