Playing "turbo" tournaments in Las Vegas ...
I recently returned from a trip to Las Vegas. I decided to try a few of the morning "turbo" tournamants at Luxor and Mandalay Bay. You start out with very few chips (around 300). Betting starts at $10/15 and raises to the next level every 15 minutes. After one hour, betting is no limit.
Mandalay Bay - Geez ... registration for the 10:00 a.m. tourney starts at 7:00 a.m.
I got up early and got registered just after 7 am. The tourney filled up quickly. I swear, this tourney was just like playing an online freeroll! Two people had quads in the first five hands. One woman won a big pot by hitting a heart flush on the river. Her starting hand: 3h, rag! I was sitting with some guys who seemed to be good players. We couldn't believe the crap that was going on. I got no cards and had to settle for finishing in the top half.
Luxor - Played three morning tourneys there. Basically the same type of format as Mandalay. Finished in the top half in one, just missed the final table in another, and finished third in one. In the one I finished third, the final three only played one hand together. I was on the button and got A-K, so I go all in. The next player, who had a little more than me, called me. Last player, who had way more chips than anyone, raises, and the other player goes all in. I, of course, had A-K. The second player had K-Q suited, and the chip leader had 7-7. The flop is rags, the turn sucks, then the river ... a 7! Since two players went out together, the one who started the hand with the fewest chips (me) got third. I swear, when I got the Big Slick I just had the feeling that I was going to come back and win the tourney. Check out my siggie!
What I learned: I had read that if you played in one of these turbo tourneys, you have to have good cards early and press them, then have good cards toward the end. Not surprisingly, that is exactly what happened when I finished third. In these quick turbo tourneys, a run of so-so cards is a death blow. The tourneys were fun, but luck seemed to play into things way too much. Gotta admit, though - making the final table is always a great time!