Commentary

Fellows wins $311,899 in HORSE

Updated: June 14, 2009, 10:50 AM ET
By Andrew Feldman | ESPN.com

Event 20 | Event 22

The popularity of HORSE continues to grow. While many casual players joke about the idea of playing in the $50,000 HORSE event some day, the $3,000 HORSE event seemed to fit perfectly into the schedule at the 2009 World Series of Poker. The five-game tournament attracted 452 players, up 9 percent from 2008. Many of the top players in the world entered, creating a strong field as they hoped to practice for the biggest bracelet of the summer in the $50,000 event.

[+] EnlargeZac Fellows
IMPDI 2009Zac Fellows edged out James Van Alstyne in the $3,000 HORSE event to win his first bracelet.

Zac Fellows is not one of those big names, but at his second final table appearance, he was able to outlast the field and win his first WSOP bracelet.

"It's unbelievable," Fellows said. "It's surreal. Even right now, it's not going to sink in for a couple of more days. This is something that everybody wants. It's something everybody goes after. I feel really lucky and very fortunate to come out on top."

The 25-year-old from Vancouver, British Columbia, is an Internet affiliate, and he generates money by referring users to online sites. A huge movie fan, Fellows wrote his own script in this event and earned $311,899 for the win. At his other final table appearance, Fellows finished second. He knew that he couldn't let history repeat itself in 2009.

"I think the experience is important," Fellows said of his previous final table effort. "You learn to take it a little better. I remember that I ran really bad when I lost before. I was sort of like James last time. I ran bad and I could not get a hand. Nothing was going for me. This time, when that sort of thing happened to me at the final table, it did not rattle me as much. Experience is always good."

Fellows mentioned the fact that his heads-up opponent, James Van Alstyne, didn't have the cards behind him. Alstyne entered the final table in the lead with Fellows trailing. More than eight hours later, Fellows finally grabbed the lead from Alstyle, and after a two-hour heads-up battle, he held the bracelet.

"I feel all right," Van Alstyne said afterward. "I mean, I ran unlucky at the end, but then again I was lucky to be in that spot [playing heads-up for a bracelet]. I ran very well for three days -- right until the heads-up. So, I really can't complain too much."

Van Alstyne currently has 12 WSOP cashes and five WSOP final table appearances.

Other notable finishers include Gavin Smith (10th), Chau Giang (16th) and Steve Billirakis (23rd).

Below are the complete results of Event 21:

Event 21: HORSE
Buy-in: $3,000
Entries: 452
Prize pool: $1,247,520
Players in the money: 48

1. Zachary Fellows ($311,899)
2. James Van Alstyne ($192,866)
3. Timothy Finne ($126,199)
4. Michele Limongi ($87,264)
5. Christopher Amaral ($63,536)
6. Martin Eikeng ($48,590)
7. Gabriel Nassif ($38,947)
8. Matthew Hawrilenko ($32,647)
9. Stewart Yancik ($23,777)
10. Gavin Smith ($23,777)
11. Frank Cremen ($17,939)
12. Asher Derei ($17,939)
13. Bill Blanda ($14,209)
14. Aaron Steury ($14,209)
15. Adam Heller ($11,477)
16. Chau Giang ($11,477)
17. David Baker ($8,782)
18. Ylon Schwartz ($8,782)
19. Frank Debus ($8,782)
20. Brian McKain ($8,782)
21. Jared Okun ($8,782)
22. William Mcmahan Jr. ($8,782)
23. Steve Billirakis ($8,782)
24. Daniel Shak ($8,782)
25. Toto Leonidas ($6,449)
26. Marcel Luske ($6,449)
27. Mark Dickstein ($6,449)
28. David Huff ($6,449)
29. Marcus Golser ($6,449)
30. Nick Frangos ($6,449)
31. Scott Lake ($6,449)
32. Dale Phillips ($6,449)
33. James Schaaf ($5,838)
34. Jose Paz ($5,838)
35. Richard Tatalovich ($5,838)
36. Matt Glantz ($5,838)
37. David Singer ($5,838)
38. Michael Watson ($5,838)
39. Pat Poels ($5,838)
40. David Sklansky ($5,838)
41. Fabrice Soulier ($5,277)
42. Stephen Devlin ($5,277)
43. Barry Greenstein ($5,277)
44. Ali Sarkeshik ($5,277)
45. Tad Jurgens ($5,277)
46. Aitan Hillel ($5,277)
47. Martin Davis ($5,277)
48. Mikhail Tulchinskiy ($5,277)

Andrew Feldman is ESPN.com's Poker Editor. He is the host of the Poker Edge Podcast and co-host of ESPN Inside Deal. Andrew has covered the poker industry for ESPN since 2004.

ALSO SEE