Cannes Poker Run

Jan 16, 2020 Most recently, as in last week, he sent me some information on the 2020 Riviera Poker Run on June 20. Yes, I’m talking about the French Riviera, the one that includes Cannes, Europe’s premiere summer playground for the rich and famous. Poker Runs usually involve large groups on motorcycles or other motorized vehicles where an entry fee is required to participate. The participants travel to a number of locations, usually bars, collecting a single playing card at each establishment. At the end of the run, the player(s) with the best hand wins a prize. Traditional “Poker runs.

On May 13th, the world’s top celebrities will head to Cannes, in the south of France, for the city’s annual high-profile film festival. Six days later, the Cannes Charity Poker event, sponsored by, will take place in the bustling city. As the tournament’s sponsor, is giving its members the chance to play poker alongside Matt Damon and Ben Affleck.

Damon was the star of the popular 1998 poker movie “Rounders,” which sparked many players to try their hand at No Limit Texas Hold’em. Besides Damon, who has also appeared in films like “Good Will Hunting” and the Bourne trilogy, “Rounders” also featured John Malkovich, John Turturro, and Gretchen Mol as the character Jo. Affleck has been a staple of the big screen for the last 15 years, appearing in movies such as “Dogma,” “The Sum of All Fears,” “Pearl Harbor,” and “Daredevil.” Affleck’s brother, Casey, took ninth in the 2008 Ante Up for Africa charity tournament held at the World Series of Poker. Both Affleck and Damon can be found in charity events held around the world.

The poker festivities in Cannes will benefit Not On Our Watch and One Voice For Freedom, which help children in Darfur and anti-slavery efforts, respectively. The former was founded by Don Cheadle, George Clooney, Damon, Brad Pitt, David Pressman, and Jerry Weintraub. The winner of the 60 player event in Cannes will receive one of the most unique prizes ever awarded in a poker tournament: a quarter of a million dollar beach house in Durban, South Africa. The winner and a guest will also receive three nights in a top-tier hotel in Cannes plus travel expenses and a fancy dinner at the Palme d’Or.

Cannes Poker Run

888 is sending one of its players to the charity poker tournament. In order to qualify, members must have generated at least 1,200 points between March 1st and May 6th. On May 9th at 19:00 GMT, a freeroll will be held on its felts for those who have qualified. Players in the free event will receive 5,000 starting chips and the price of poker will go up every 15 minutes following the $20,000 Guaranteed structure. Its winner heads to Cannes.


A £160 buy-in tournament will take place on May 7th at 20:00 GMT for those players who were not able to accumulate at least 1,200 points. The top three finishers in the £160 buy-in tournament will gain access to the freeroll two days later. Each player begins with 3,000 chips and blinds increase every 15 minutes.

The $20,000 Guaranteed on Pacific Poker, which is owned and operated by 888, runs six times per week at 20:35 GMT. The only day it doesn’t occur is Sunday. The buy-in to the tournament is just $55 and satellites begin at an affordable $2.20. On Sundays, Pacific Poker players flock to the $100,000 Deep Stack Challenge, which kicks off at 20:00 GMT. The buy-in is $140 and direct qualifiers begin at $30, doling out one entry into the Deep Stack Challenge for every $140 in the prize pool.

A press release distributed on Monday by 888 explains the allure of playing poker with Damon, Affeck, and other movie stars: “The black tie occasion promises to be one of THE events of the two week Cannes Film Festival and the lucky winner not only has a chance of winning that $250,000 beach house, but also has the opportunity to mix with some of the biggest celebrities on the planet and to rub shoulders with the world’s cinematic glitterati.”

The Cannes Film Festival begins on May 13th and runs until the 24th. Last year’s festivities included appearances by a veritable “who’s who” of Hollywood personalities, including Dennis Hopper, Robert De Niro, Bénicio del Toro, and Sean Penn. In 2008, a record 1,070 feature films were entered, the second straight year with more than 1,000. In addition, 45 shorts were also a part of the judging.

According to, which tracks online poker room traffic, Pacific Poker ranks as the 13th largest worldwide with a seven day running average of 1,080 cash game players. Its 24 hour peak is double that number, 2,113. At the time of writing, 1,356 players are taking to its virtual felts. The largest site in the world is PokerStars, which features a seven day average of 22,200 real money ring game players.


Editor’s Note: As of March 25th, 2009, this promotion is limited to registered players of New players are not eligible to be sent to Cannes.

Riders at a checkpoint in the 2009 Isle of Vashon TT poker run.

A poker run is an organized event in which participants, usually using motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, boats, snowmobiles, horses, on foot or other means of transportation, must visit five to seven checkpoints, drawing a playing card at each one. The object is to have the best poker hand at the end of the run. Having the best hand and winning is purely a matter of chance. The event has a time limit, however the individual participants are not timed.

According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the record for the largest event was set in 2009 with 2,136 motorcyclists benefiting the Fallen Firefighter Survivors Foundation (FFSF).[1]

The record for the largest single venue event was set in 2012, with 586 motorcyclists raising money for Prostate Cancer research in Ottawa, Canada.[2]


Poker runs usually require a fee to enter and some for each additional hand; in some events a small part of the fee may go to funding the event, including the prizes, while the rest goes to the event's charity recipient or club treasury. In charity events usually most, if not all of the funds goes to the selected charity. Prizes, such as money, plaques, or merchandise donated by commercial sponsors of the event, are awarded for the best hand. Some runs will award smaller awards for lower hands or even the lowest hand.

Each checkpoint might offer food or entertainment, either covered by the entry fee or at additional cost. Each participant is responsible to maintain the integrity of their hand during the run. Hands are usually written down or marked with punched holes on a ticket, rather than assembled from actual cards given to the riders. The only requirement is that riders arrive at the final checkpoint by the time prizes are awarded, usually near the end of the day, typically at a party with food and refreshments. It might be required that participants collect all of the requisite number of cards, five or seven, or they might be allowed to miss checkpoints and use a hand with fewer cards, though the odds of a winning hand are much lower.



Although most events are on motorcycles, off-road vehicles, boats, or horses, events involving small aircraft, ATVs, bicycles, golf carts, snowmobiles,[3] skateboards,[4] running,[5] canoeing and kayaking,[6] and geocaching[7] have been held.

Street lined with motorcycles at a rally in Marietta, Ohio which incorporates a 'Ride for the Red' dice run benefiting the American Red Cross.

Dice run[edit]

Cannes Poker Run Rules

A dice run is one variation, where instead of collecting cards, participants roll dice at each stop. The object is to have the highest score as determined by the sum of the dice rolls.

See also[edit]


  1. ^'Largest motorcycle Poker run - Guinness World Records Blog post - Home of the Longest, Shortest, Fastest, Tallest facts and feats'. 2009-04-18. Archived from the original on 2009-05-09. Retrieved 2012-05-16.
  2. ^'Largest motorcycle poker run (single venue)'. 2012-11-06. Retrieved 2013-02-26.
  3. ^[1]Archived July 5, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^'Poker Run', Silverfish Longboarding - The Longboard Skateboard Community - P - General Longboard Glossary, archived from the original on 12 December 2007, retrieved 2010-07-02
  5. ^[2]Archived August 16, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier: Canoe/kayak poker run will benefit ill children
  7. ^ First Annual Lillington Poker Run


Cannes Poker Run Races

External links[edit]

Cannes Poker Run Game

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