Getting rich playing poker is a dream for many aspiring professional poker players. John Hesp usually sells caravans in Yorkshire for a living. With poker merely as a hobby playing once a month at his local casino, it was quite a surprise how he won a fortune playing in Las Vegas. However, what is even more surprising is the fact that he hasn’t changed his lifestyle despite winning a fortune from playing poker. He still sells caravans and plays at his local casino.
Already 64-years-old, and a grandfather, John Hesp is from Bridlington who may not look like your typical younger poker player. He is relaxed and even an unknown figure in the poker table last year since he only played in low-key games locally in Hull.
Making History Bagging $2.6 million
Hesp was able to make history in July when he entered one of the most prestigious poker tournaments in the US, the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas. He was able to finish fourth out of the 7,220 participants and he was able to bag $2.6 million.
With a jovial demeanor that is far from the poker face look that some other competitors use, he has caught the attention of poker world. In fact, some of the biggest names were actually rooting for him to win to win.
He mentioned that “I’d never have dreamed in my wildest dreams that it could happen” during his interview with 888Poker Live London Festival. He added that “it’s just something that was on my bucket-list for ages. My aim was to finish in the top 1,000 and have some fun”.
He admitted that unlike others, he wasn’t really playing four or five times a week. In fact, he was only playing once a month in Hull on a £10 buy-in. According to him, “So to progress to £2m and international poker superstardom almost overnight has been a proper fairy tale”.
But instead of taking the time off and going on a vacation in some exotic location, what John did was to return to his caravan business wherein he continues to work four days a week. However, he did give himself a short break but not in some tropical beach but rather at his static caravan in the Pateley Bridge in the Yorkshire Dales.
He said that “I have to say I’m very boring”. He also mentioned that “I don’t spend large sums on flashy clothes or Rolexes. I’ve gifted a big chunk of the money to family and invested in another business as a sleeping partner. But I’m still driving the same car”.
From £200 to Millions
From having £200 as his biggest winnings to becoming a superstar in just an overnight event, it was a shock for many to see John Hesp win. And while he is under the radar of the entire poker world, he maintains his fun-loving image on top of it all. And it is his carefree attitude that made it possible for him to win in Vegas.
He mentioned that “Youngsters who’ve grown up with videogames and the internet often don’t have a social side to their game”. He added that “They sit quietly with their shades and headphones, some looking like they’ve never seen daylight. They should enjoy it more, and not be afraid to socialize at the table”. Is he right after all with his observations?