Spring Circuit Success for Calgary

More than $3.6 million was awarded as Peter Darlington and Chun Kwan won two rings each.

The May 2024 edition of the World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOP-C) Calgary was the sixth running of the iconic regional tour at Deerfoot Inn & Casino. With nearly $3.66 million in prizes and more than 6,200 entries across the 13-day series, it did not disappoint.

The series ran from May 1 – 13 and was the third running of the May games. WSOP-C has been to Cowtown twice a year since the tour first rode into town in Jan 2022. Traditionally, the World Series hoedown comes to town in January and May every year, with January being the biggest series by far.

While the May series tends to be smaller than the massive winter stampede, in comparison to other local series, WSOP-C has no competitor. Even the “small” version of the series brings in previously unheard-of numbers in the local live tournament scene.

When the dust cleared Tuesday morning, and all that was left was casino maintenance taking down the tables, 6,220 entries were recorded across 16 events in the series. That was more events than any previous WSOP-C series in Calgary and came to a grand total of $3,659,945 in prizes over the series.

Year-over-Year Success

While the May edition of the Circuit in Calgary is always smaller than January, year over year the tournaments have been growing. Comparing May to May, the 2024 edition was the biggest yet by pretty much every measure, continuing a trend of each year surpassing the comparable series from the previous year.

WSOP-C Calgary May 2024 Summary
Total Prizes$3,659,945
Total Entries6,220
Total 1st Place$690,708
WSOP-C Calgary Growth for the May Series by Prizes and Entries

In comparison, the January series are quite a bit bigger. This recent series was the biggest May ever but it was only $350k more than the inaugural January 2022 show and nearly $2.2 million smaller than the Jan 2024 series.

Taking Jan and May as distinct series, the overall growth of WSOP-C in Calgary is very encouraging. While the southern Alberta city most well-known for its annual Calgary Exhibition & Stampede was already gaining a reputation as a local poker mecca prior to the WSOP coming to town, the new tour supercharged the scene.

Host Deefoot Inn & Casino was already well-known for tournament poker, running four Super Stack series per year with seasonal themes. While the global pandemic put a stop to that for a couple of years, the 2022 return was fierce with two of the four Super Stack events upgraded to WSOP-C series.

The first series in Jan 2022 blew local records out of the water with the biggest prize pools and fields the region had ever seen. That only grew with Jan 2024 flirting with the $6 million mark, the biggest May on record, and exciting news for later in the year and beyond.

WSOP-C Calgary Growth

Series DateEventsEntriesPrizesME PrizesYoY % Increase
Jan 2022126,510$3,324,335$1,786,362
May 2022134,490$2,562,408$1,371,163
Jan 2023157,480$5,322,735$2,169,30360.11%
May 2023135,495$3,451,103$1,433,79234.68%
Jan 2024159,464$5,808,951$2,234,6259.13%
May 2024166,220$3,659,945$1,380,1656.05%

Nearly $700k Awarded to Winners

A good chunk of the more than $690k in prizes awarded to winners in Calgary this past series was, as always, locked up in the Main Event. While this series generated quite a few stories, one of the open questions from the start was whether the hometown heroes could continue their dominance.

Main Event Title Flies Away

Coming into May 2024, all previous WSOP-C Calagry Main Events have been won by players from Alberta. It started with Jan 2022’s winner Cody McKay from Daysland, a community of less than 1,000 people, and from there, the local talent kept rising to the top.

Poker is a game of variance, though, and unlikely streaks always come to an end – this time around, the Main Event ring got on a plane to fly back to Ontario. Chatham, ON’s Nicholas Teeuwen was the player to break the Alberta sweep.

It wasn’t much of a surprise, to be honest. Teeuwen is no stranger to Alberta series, and has been on the final table of several ring events in the past at Deerfoot, including two 3rd-place runs. He’s also been very close to Circuit ring in online series on WSOP.ca in Ontario, so it seemed only a matter of time before he took one down.


  • Check out Peter Darlington’s epic consecutive rings in Event #3 and Event #8
  • Chun Kwan followed Darlington to the doubles club with wins in Event #7 and Event #15

Without too much promotion for a certain Canadian coffee chain, there was a bit of a WSOP-C version of a double-double. Two players managed to win two different ring events in this series, and both players kind of came out of nowhere.

The first to bag two rings was local player Peter Darlington, who managed to accomplish the feat on consecutive days. While it may look like there would be a long gap between Event 3 and Event 8, the two he won, the ring for E3 was awarded on Day 2, the day before the one-day E8 PLO game ran.

Darlington, who plays poker as a hobby with most of his focus on his net-zero renovations business Solar Homes, wasn’t even able to play a full schedule this series. With spring on the horizon as one of the country’s leading net-zero conversion companies, his business life kept him away from the felt for much of the series. He was still able to bag two rings on consecutive days in two different variants of the game.

Not to be outdone, Chun Kwan from Hong Kong stepped it up a notch. Not only did his two-ring this series add up to more than $100k in winnings, but they account for fully half of his recorded scores on Hendon Mob.

Kwan was shooting big with his wins, first taking down the Turbo $1k, then the $2,200 High Roller on the final day of the series. Between the two wins, he pocketed more than $107k in addition to his first two Circuit rings in just his third and fourth recorded cashes.

From Worst to First & Other Stories

Christopher “Pokin StaR” Alcindor clearly knows how to play the short stack. He was tied for the shortest stack coming into the second day of play in the Monster Stack, but by the end of the day, 40 million in 500k plaques and 25k chips were in front of the KK Poker rep.

Alcindor wasn’t the only other story from the 2024 May series. Peter Griffin (and yes, he’s heard that one before), was one of two players to add second rings to their resumes after booking their first in previous series here at Deerfoot.

Griffin bagged the very first 4-Flight game back in Jan 2022 for almost $60k and his first ring, then grabbed the Two-Day $1k title this year for just shy of $50k. Remarkably, David Labchuk’s second ring came in the very same event his first did – the Seniors event. He won the first one back in 2022 and followed that up with this year’s 50-plus title. Perhaps even more remarkably, he followed that up later in the series with a run to the final four in the Main Event.

Full Series Results for WSOP-C Calgary May 2024

EventTournament NameEntriesPrizesWinner1st Place
1$400 Big 30 Stack363$119,790Lee Clark$25,158
2$800 NLH/PLO Mix137$95,900Julius Roque$25,556
3$600 Mystery Bounty276$142,140Duff Charette$19,100
4$400 4-Flight1,101$363,330Peter Darlington$58,815
5$400 Seniors387$127,710David Labchuk$26,332
6$400 Black Chip Bounty308$101,640Griffin Ristevski$15,531
7$1,000 $1k249$217,875Peter Griffin$49,224
8$400 PLO197$65,010Peter Darlington$15,677
9$400 Monster Stack1,005$346,500Chris Alcindor$58,273
10$1,000 $1k Turbo126$110,250Chun Kwan$30,201
11$1,700 Main Event911$1,380,165Nicholas Teeuwen$228,734
12$250 Flip & Go336$70,560Dongwoo(David) Ko$15,501
13$400 PLO Bounty259$85,740Dechang(Leo) Zhang$13,357
14$400 Ladies137$45,210Jenelle Exner$12,048
15$2200 High Roller151$296,715Chun Kwan$77,119
16$400 Big 30 Stack277$91,410Robert Thompson$20,082
WSOP-C Calgary May 2024 – Series Results

New Series in August

2024 is a special year for Calgary as the WSOP-C is coming to town three times. Jan and May are already in the books, but the new August series, replacing the venerable Summer Super Stack this year. There is no schedule yet, but the dates are during the traditional Summer dates of Aug 7 to 19.

2025 also has a few surprises in store for fans of WSOP-C Calgary. While Deerfoot is likely to go back to the more traditional two series per year for 2025, there may well be some exciting shake-ups in the works for the new season.

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