Back in 2016, Fedor Holz experienced a dream run unlike any other. It was the year in which this poker star drew in $16,093,401 in live tournament cashes. This amazing feat was not an easy accomplishment for the player and even with such a big win, there was always the question of how much prize money Holz took home.
In a YouTube video released by Pokercode, the GGPoker Ambassador narrates his spectacular 2016 experience. According to Holz, his run started in 2015 when he won $3,492,364 from live events. “So, in 2015, I believe I was at the top of my game,” said Holz.
“In 2013 – 2014, I was a really strong player, probably one of the best in the world, and was competing at the highest stakes and tournaments. In 2014 I had a breakthrough year online, then in 2015 I started playing Super High Rollers,” this was the time when the German player admitted that his game was at its best.
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Despite scoring many six-figure sums, Holz still came up short. Eventually, his $1.5- $1.8 million bankroll went down to $1.1 – $1.2 million. It was also evident that he did much better when playing lower buy-in events than he did playing tournaments with massive buy-ins.
So, although the first 10 months of 2015 looked good for the German player, he was actually losing more money overall. There were also a few other issues that Holz faced in 2015 making it a very challenging year for the player.
“I also had some issues with some horses who took some money from me, and some private issues I had around the pressure that I felt. I am so good now, I need to get a return, I need to see success around that,” admitted Holz.
Even though talent is required when it comes to playing poker, mental health is an equally important part of it. Realizing this, the poker pro knew he needed to work on his mental game. So, in November 2015, he approached a well-known mental health coach Elliot Roe. The two worked together to get Holz to change his mindset and help him see the bigger picture. In the 2015 WSOP Europe €25,600 High Roller event, Holz had an epiphany where he busted out much earlier than he expected but was happy about it.
“I went into this final table, I believe, three out of six or two out of six and I busted in the first three hands or first five hands. I am in the small blind, I have a standard re-jam, he calls, and I lose. Super standard spot and I really remember that I was there 15-minutes early, I prepared myself, I was super zoned in, I was focused, I was ready to play, and I could for the first time that I was standing up that I was absolutely happy. I played well and could only focus on that, that was really a shift in my career,” said Holz.
Things slowly started looking up for the German player when he won the $100,000 WPT Alpha8 tournament in Las Vegas in December 2015 for $1,589,219. In January 2016, he then went on to win the $200,000 buy-in Triton Super High Roller Series in the Philippines for $3,072,748. Holz described this tournament as ‘crazy soft’ and said that three or four players who made Day 2 never showed up and blinded out because they were playing cash games elsewhere. The same year, Holz cashed for more than €500,000 at the EPT Monte Carlo.
After this, Holz went to Las Vegas for the summer to compete in the 2016 World Series of Poker (WSOP). With $450,000 worth of side bets with his friends, including bracelet bets, most money won, etc. he averaged 11 hours of playing poker every day for seven and a half weeks. Being a pro and putting in this much volume into his game, Holz was bound to get some amazing results and he did.
The summer started on a good note for Holz who went heads-up against his friend and roommate Rainer Kempe in the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl. While Holz was the runner-up, his other action on the felts helped him walk away with three to four million dollars in profit. That was also the time when Holz travelled between the Rio All-Suite for WSOP and the Aria to play other live events. In the Aria, the poker pro cashed for a combined winnings worth $1.3 million.
The $111,111 High Roller for One Drop Event was the cherry on top for Holz, who grabbed the title spot after a three-way chop with runner-up Dan Smith and third-place finisher Koray Aldemir. “I have a piece of Koray, I have a really big piece of myself, around 50%, and the piece of Koray was also a pretty big piece, so that was another couple of million for me. I was up at least $10 million at that point just in Vegas.”
Once WSOP ended, Holz took a break from playing poker. However, when he returned to the felts it was at the €50,000 Super High Roller event at the 2016 EPT Barcelona. This was where he pulled in €1.3 million. According to Holz, he considers this to be his greatest tournament performance of his career.
Although 2016 seemed like a year belonging to Holz, he surprisingly didn’t win the Global Poker Index Player of the Year for 2016. Instead, that award went to David Peters. Even though Holz had a massive lead, Peters was able to catch up with a third-place finish at the EPT Prague Main Event.
Holz recalled that time and said, “I had the most insane sun-run in 2016. I played well but I obviously ran an insane amount above EV, and then David Peters just sneaked by with another fantastic tournament performance to win GPI Player of the Year, which I think didn’t get enough credit and praise.”
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Despite not completely revealing the exact number for 2016, it is clear that the player made more than $10 million in profit from his Las Vegas tournaments; racked up $450,000 in side bets; grabbed €1.3 million in Barcelona which means Holz added more than $10 million in his kitty in that year alone.
Donna Amo is a writer at Gutshot Magazine. She is a graduate from Sophia College of Women, Mumbai with a degree in English Literature. When this October born foodie is not writing content or poetry, she spends her time laughing at memes or watching series. Based out of Mizoram, she is drawn to all things nature and has a soft spot for puppies.
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