Friday, April 30, 2010

"The Race" Big Bucks for Me?

Carbon Poker (Carbon Poker? - yes Carbon Poker - not surprised you haven't heard of it) is running a promotion in May called "The Race." It is going to be a big deal for me.

I heard about Carbon Poker through the website that does my rakeback ( and I opened an account there in January with the hopes of getting some unqualified people to play head up against me. At the time there were very few if any limit games going on the site. But in April Carbon joined up with a bunch of poker rooms that were being run by various sports betting websites and now they have some actual traffic (those of you who read my tweets will know that I took $1,000 off two $10/$20 games there yesterday).

So what is this race all about? Well, like all poker websites carbon has a points system (and a VIP system with levels like pokerstars). The way it works is for every dollar you pay in rake you get 10 points. Pay $100 in rake, get 1,000 points.

The race is essentially 15 point milestones that each come with a cash prize. The lowest is 250 points and pays $2.50. As soon as you earn 250 points (or in other words pay $25 in rake) you get $2.50 in your account. The next level is 500. After you earn ANOTHER 500 points you get $5. Another 1,000 and you get $10 more dollars. There are actually 15 levels with the top level being 100,000 points which pays an insane $15,000.

They call it the race, because there are only a certain number of prizes at each level. The first level has 1,500, $2.50 prizes. The next level has 1,250 $5 prizes and so on.

Here is a chart with all of the levels (sorry this chart looks like shit! It didn't past very well!).

Level Points Prize Total Prizes
1 250 $2.50 1,500
2 500 $5 1,250
3 1,000 $10 1,000
4 2,000 $20 700
5 2,500 $30 600
6 3,000 $40 500
7 3,500 $70 400
8 5,000 $125 300
9 7,500 $200 200
10 10,000 $250 125
11 15,000 $750 75
12 25,000 $1,000 50
13 50,000 $2,500 25
14 75,000 $5,000 10
15 100,000 $15,000 5

So what are my chances of hitting all 15 levels? I'd say less than 1%. If you add it all up I'd have to pay $30,000 in rake to hit the top level. I've actually done that much in a month before. In fact in December 2008 on my way to Supernova Elite I paid about $45,000 in rake. But that was on pokerstars playing 6 $10/$20 games, many hours a day, 30 of 31 days that month (I lost over $10,000 that month). There just aren't that many games on Carbon poker and I don't want to torture myself like that again.

Last month I raked about $11,000 on AP and Cake combined without working too hard at it. That's kind of my baseline. I know I'm going to have to play $5/$10 games and even $3/$6 games which is going to be boring, but it should be worth it.

If I can rake $12,500 I'll pick up $5,002 in bonus money from this promotion alone. I'll also get a $1,000 bonus from rakeback nation when for raking more than $5,000 in a month and I'll get back 35% of whatever rake I pay as part of my rakeback deal. Add that up and it's $10,377!

But wait! There's more! If that wasn't enough Carbon poker has a ridiculously complex VIP system with various levels and rewards! A quick set of dirty calculations has me picking up an extra $2,000 by cashing in the points I earn and hitting other goofy ass milestones and parameters that they've set up.

So I'm going to pay $12,500 in rake and get back 99% of it. That's my plan.

If I go buck nuts and make it to $20,000 in rake which would be enough to hit level 14 of "The Race" I'll get about $23,000 in bonuses which is 115% rakeback!

Three things are going to hold me back and make it tough to do as much as I want. First and foremost is a potential lack of games. Right now there is one $10/$20 and three $3/$6 games. Nothing bigger or in between. If that line up was available 24/7 I think I could do it. Typically there has been at least one $10/$20 and one $5/$10 going the past few days with smattering of lower games. I'm hoping that I'll be able to help start more games since I'm willing to play heads up.

The second thing that's going to hold me back is money. Right now I have $1,700 in Carbon Poker and it's going to take me a few days to get more in. The only way for me to get money in there is through I can send money to ewallet from my bank, but I have to pay them 8.8% of whatever I deposit. Not a great option. The other way is to cashout from AP or Cake to ewallet and then send it over to carbon. I've started the process, but it's going to take a few days. So if I run bad at the start I could blow though my $1,700 and have to wait a day or two to resume play. Working for me in this regard is Carbon pays rakeback every day and I'll get the race prizes as soon as I earn them.

Third, the SCOOP. I might trim down my SCOOP schedule, but I'm still going to be playing one or two tournaments a day for two weeks.

Actually there is a 4th concern which is minute, but still there. And that it that I could have some competition for the prizes. I don't see anyway for 25 people to rake $12,500 on Carbon poker. There are hundreds who do that on pokerstars and fulltilt, but not on Carbon. I'm going to log on at minute 1 and start play to make sure I don't get jacked out of the first few prizes which I'm sure will be hit by the limiting number of players pretty quickly.

May is going to be a looooooong month, but I'm hoping it's a profitable one! Let's hope I have the mental fortitude to make this happen!

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