Irish Poker Tour

    The Irish Poker Tour is a relative newcomer to the live poker scene, beginning in 2022 at the start of the post COVID poker boom. It is operated by Fintan Gavin, an Irish player of legendary status, with more 1st place finishes on his hendonmob profile than the number of times he’s been spotted in long trousers. The joke behind this is that every time Fintan plays he wears shorts, so even when he is suited and booted making speeches at the start of a festival, he always changes his attire before he takes a seat at the poker table.

    • Before the Irish Poker Tour
    • The Irish Poker Tour is Born
    • European Expansion of the Irish Poker Tour
    • Irish Poker Tour 2024 Schedule
    • Ways to Enter
    • Satellites to Irish Poker Tour events
    • Irish Poker Tour 2023 Main Event Winners
    • Leaderboard
    • Event Coverage
    • Irish Poker Tour Ambassadors

    The Tour is essentially a low buy-in poker series which is constantly on the move, with over twenty festivals per year. Most of the festivals take place over 3-day weekends, starting on Fridays and wrapping up on Sunday. Typically they include up top half a dozen tournaments with very affordable buy-ins, which is perfect for the current state of poker with many new players having only taken up the game in the last few years. The main events are usually €150-€250 to enter and there is always at least one Omaha tournament at each stop. 

    A few times a year, the Irish Poker Tour runs events with slightly higher buy-ins, enabling the tour to successfully bridge the gap between being a grass roots series and offering something slightly more juicy for the more established players in the Irish poker community.

    Before the Irish Poker Tour

    Fintan Gavin has been playing poker himself for over twenty years and he’s been a poker event operator for almost as long, having put on dozens of successful events over the years, prior to launching the Irish Poker Tour. His repertoire included big events like the 2010 UK & Ireland Poker Tour Galway Festival. With a committed and highly experienced team that was already in place, the tour hit the ground running in its first season, instantly becoming a focal point for the Irish poker community.

    The Irish Poker Tour is Born

    Unusually, the very first Irish Poker Tour event wasn’t even in Ireland, it was in London. That event, in May 2022 kickstarted the first season, with all the other 17 events being staged in their rightful homeland. There has been an event in the UK capital on every season of the tour and in 2024 the London event once again opened the new season. 

    European Expansion of the Irish Poker Tour

    in 2023 the tour signalled its ambitions to become an international series, spreading its wings further by holding the Bratislava Poker Festival in the Slovakian capital. The event is scheduled again for July 2024 and is joined by another jaunt to continental Europe with a summer event on the Algarve, at Casino Troia in Portugal. It would a surprise if they don’t add further events outside the Emerald Isle in future seasons.

    Irish Poker Tour 2024 Schedule

    The first half the year has already been announced, with ten Irish Poker Tour festivals scheduled up until June 2024. A similarly busy second half of the year is expected, with additional events expected to be announced soon.
    Festival DatesFestivalMain Event Buy-In 
    3-7 January 2024Galway Poker Festival€ 600
    12-13 January 2024Cork 1€ 150
    26-28 January 2024Westport Poker Festival€ 300
    16-17 February 2024Mayo Poker Festival€ 250
    8-9 March 2024Cork 2€ 150
    14-17 March 2024St. Patrick's €100K For €100, Dublin€ 100
    11-14 April 2024Connacht Poker Festival, Galway€ 150
    1-5 May, 2024The Monster, Dublin€ 150
    17-19 May, 2024The Siege of Clonmel€ 250
    19-23 May, 2024Paddy Power Poker Portugal Adventure, Troia€ 700
    16-21 July, 2024Bratislava Poker Festival€ 700

    Ways to Enter

    There are three ways to buy-in to Irish Poker events:

    1. Cash. It is the most obvious and the most traditional way of paying to play poker. Simply rock up to the cash desk on the day of the tournament, slap your wad on the counter, show some ID and take your seat. Simples!
    2. Bank Transfers. The Irish Poker Tour is very accommodating in helping with direct bank transfers to buy-in to events. Anyone wishing to buy-in this way should contact Fintan Gavin directly on +353 830022889.
    3. Luxon Pay. Tournament entries and transfers can be made directly to the Irish Poker Tour cage using Luxon Pay. The Irish Poker Tour registrations team can also assist any player in setting up a Luxon pay account.

    Satellites to Irish Poker Tour events

    As many of the events are relatively low buy-in, not all festivals include live satellites. However, the slightly higher buy-in events, such as the Portugal Adventure (€700 main event) do include satellites on their festival schedules. 

    Online satellites also take place at Paddy Power.

    Irish Poker Tour 2023 Main Event Winners

    The only double winner of the year was James O'Brien, who followed up his win in the Cork main event by taking down the Galway Winter Festival.
    FestivalEntriesPrize PoolWinner1st Place Prize
    Irish Poker Champoionship, Galway (€550)689€ 333,418Liam McVeigh€ 58,977
    Westport Poker Festival (€300)428€ 109,451David Cleary€ 16,500
    Clonmel (€150)231€ 27,865Sylvia Cooney€ 4,050
    Cork Poker Festival (€550)281€ 105,523Jamie Scannell€ 26,000
    €50k for €50, Dublin 1254€ 51,050Mourad Kissous€ 7,710
    Mayo Poker Cup (€250)107€ 22,717Seamus Cox€ 5,550
    The Monsteer, Dublin (€150)1796€ 216,643Kyle Slattery€ 22,245
    Cork (€150)192€ 23,160Jordan Cooper€ 4,900
    London (£400)609€ 212,543Gary Miller€ 33,193
    Summer in Dublin (€200)965€ 160,171Shyamrag Charuvil€ 35,000
    Lunasa Lunacy917€ 152,204Darren Harbinson€ 20,335
    Cork (€300)269€ 55,450James O'Brien€ 17,500
    Tribesman Poker Festival, Cork (€150)171€ 20,627Tarka Roche€ 4,825
    Killarney (€600)848€ 441,893Jamie Flynn€ 70,000
    Claremorris (€150)86€ 10,374Paul Coyle€ 3,000
    Gort (€150)136€ 16,650Tony Rafter€ 3,200
    Premier Poker Cup, Clonmel350€ 60,000Gastao Silva€ 12,000
    Dublin Winter Festival760€ 194,351James O'Sullivan€ 39,000
    Cork (€150)229€ 27,624Jamie Wynne€ 7,200
    Gort (€150)108€ 15,000John Ward€ 3,950
    Galway Winter Festival (€200)109€ 17,880James O'Brien€ 5,000
    Irish Poker Tour Final, Dublin (€150)1218€ 148,500David Raschella€ 30,000

    Leaderboard

    The tour operates its own leaderboard, with points awarded to players who make the money in all Irish Poker events (not including satellites). The leaderboard prize money is collected by withholding 1% of tournament prize pools, which is expected to be in the region of €40,000 and is augmented by €10,000, provided by tour sponsor Paddy Power. 25% of the prize money is shared by the top three finishers, with the winner expected to earn in excess of €5,000. The remaining 75% of the leaderboard prize money becomes the prize pool for the leaderboard playoff tournament, which is contested by the top 16 players on the final leaderboard standings at the end of the year. The 2023 leaderboard winner was Paul Carr.

    Event Coverage

    The Irish Poker Tour places great importance on event coverage, as both a way to involve the Irish Poker community more and elevate the status of the game beyond backrooms in pubs. They employ a photographer, videographer and blogger at each event. Updates tend to take place on social media sites such as X (twitter) and on the tour’s website, where photo galleries from every event can be found.

    Irish Poker Tour Ambassadors

    The tour has a number of ambassadors. Their job is basically to raise the profile of the tour by both participating in it, wearing the tour logo when they play in third party events and blogging, tweeting, writing and generally creating content on social media that helps increase awareness of the tour. Andy Black, Darren Harbinson, Dara O’Kearney and Tanya Masters are part of the ambassador team.