For several years now, Thursday and Sunday evenings have been set aside for satellite tournaments that give players the opportunity to play their way into major events for a relatively small buy-in amount. These satellites have been a huge success, and hundreds of seats to major events such as the WPT® Montreal have been awarded via satellite tournaments.
Recently, however, some have pointed out that satellites do not start at their advertised time, as many players opt to wait until the end of the late registration period to jump in. Few players buy-in early, but are then forced to wait for 30, 60, or even 90 minutes before the tournament can start. This is due to the fact that we would delay the tourney by up to 2 x 15 minute periods if we did not have the minimum amount of runners present at the scheduled start time (# of seats guaranteed, plus 1).
Since player happiness is our number one concern, today we are announcing a new policy for satellites to help ensure they start on time. Starting on October 1st, the clock in Satellite tournaments will begin as soon as the scheduled time arrives, and cards will begin to be dealt as soon as there are as many players as the posted guarantee, plus one.
For example, for a WPT® Montreal satellite on a Thursday night at 8:00pm, with 2 seats guaranteed, cards will be dealt as soon as 3 players have taken their seats, and the clock will have started promptly at 8:00pm. If play continues 3-way and one player is eliminated, then play will be suspended but the clock will continue. Play will resume as soon as another player joins the satellite.