Female World Series of Poker Bracelet Winners


[DD] “I’ve got a bet for you guys”, Deb the Duchess offered.

[RR] “Sure…”, Roderick the Rock encouraged.

[DD] “I’ll give you even money on whether or not a woman wins a World Series of Poker bracelet in an open event this summer. I’ll back the women, of course.”

[RR] “Sounds reasonable. What do you think, Stan?”

[SS] “I’d be remiss if I didn’t inform you that at least one female has won a bracelet every year since 2012,” Stan the Stat explained. “Before that, if I’m not misremembering, the Misses, Mrses.,1 and Mses. missed three straight years. The 2000s have had exactly 17 female winners in 17 years. That’s a bit misleading as five years had multiple female winners, but that still makes them 12 for 17. Deb’s offering us miserable odds, especially given the continual increase in events.”

[DD] “I doubt you’ve misspoken. I’ll give you 2-to-1.”

[SS] “I must dismiss that offer, too. Make it 3-to-1.”

[DD] “I have misgivings about going that high, but if you multiply my payout by the number of bracelets women win, I’ll give you 3-to-1.

[SS] “… Okay, unless I’ve miscalculated, I don’t think it’s a mistake to take that bet. How about you, Rod?”

[RR] “I can’t miss out on those kinds of odds… I’m not optimistic, but I’m in.”

[SS] “Now we just need Vanessa Selbst to mysteriously disappear, since she’s the one who took care of business three of the last six times a woman won! If we could convince her to join Phil Ivey in the cash games for the next couple of months, it might be mission accomplished.”

Women Who Have Won WSOP Open Events

# Year Player Event Prize Entrants
1 1982 Vera Richmond $1,000 Limit Ace to Five Draw $38,500 77
2 1996 Barbara Enright $2,500 Pot Limit Omaha $180,000 180
3 1997 Linda Johnson $1,500 Seven-Card Razz $96,000 160
4 1997 Maria Stern $1,500 Seven-Card Stud $140,708 257
5 2000 Jerri Thomas $1,500 Seven-Card Stud $135,825 245
6 2000 Jennifer Harman $5,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Draw $146,250 30
7 2001 Nani Dollison $2,000 Limit Hold ‘Em $441,440 615
8 2002 Jennifer Harman $5,000 Limit Hold ‘Em $212,440 113
9 2004 Cyndy Violette $2,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo Split $135,900 224
10 2004 Kathy Liebert $1,500 Limit Hold ‘Em Shootout $110,180 240
11 2004 Annie Duke $2,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Split $137,860 234
12 2007 Katja Thater $1,500 Seven Card Razz $132,653 341
13 2007 Annette Obrestad £10,000 World Championship No Limit Hold ‘Em $2,013,733 362
14 2008 Vanessa Selbst $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha $227,933 759
15 2012 Vanessa Selbst $2,500 10-Game – Six Handed $244,259 421
16 2013 Dana Castaneda $1,000 No Limit Hold ‘Em $454,207 2,883
17 2013 Loni Harwood $1,500 No Limit Hold ‘Em $609,017 2,541
18 2014 Vanessa Selbst $25,000 No Limit Hold ‘Em – Mixed Max $871,148 131
19 2015 Carol Fuchs $1,500 Dealers Choice Six Handed $127,735 357
20 2016 Kristen Bicknell $1,000 No Limit Hold ‘Em $290,768 2,158
21 2016 Safiya Umerova $1,500 No Limit Hold ‘Em Shootout $264,046 1,050

Notes:

  • Vanessa Selbst, who won the highest buyin event ($25,000), and Jennifer Harman (two bracelets) are the only multiple winners.
  • Annette Obrestad won the largest prize by far, a cool £1,000,000 (worth over two million U.S. dollars at the time) in the only win outside the U.S.
  • Dana Casteneda (2,883 players), Loni Harwood (2,541), and Kristen Bicknell (2,158) defeated the largest fields.
  • In Barbara Enright’s victory, Lucy Rokach finished third.
  • In Jennifer Harman’s second victory, Mimi Tran finished third.
  • Not counting Ladies and Mixed Doubles events where a woman was guaranteed to win, three women have captured other non-open bracelets:
    • Sandy Stupak – 1984 Employee Event2 ($14,000)
    • Clare Miller – 2006 $1,000 Seniors Championship ($247,814)
    • Allyn Jaffrey Shulman – 2012 $1,000 Seniors Championship ($603,713)
  • Fifteen women have finished second and seven women have finished third in open WSOP events.3 Four women account for almost half of these: Mimi Tran, Marsha Waggoner, Annie Duke, and Cyndy Violette. Since Duke and Violette have also won events, all four have exactly three “medal” finishes, matching Selbst.

    Women With Multiple WSOP Open Event Top Three Finishes

    Player 1st 2nd 3rd Top 3
    Vanessa Selbst 3 0 0 3
    Jennifer Harman 2 0 0 2
    Annie Duke 1 2 0 3
    Cyndy Violette 1 1 1 3
    Mimi Tran 0 2 1 3
    Marsha Waggoner 0 1 2 3

{ June 2, 2017 Update: Liv Boeree won the $1,000 Tag Team No-Limit Hold ‘Em Championship with Igor Kurganov to win the bet for Deb. }

Footnotes:

  1. The actual plural of “Mrs.” is “Mmes.”, short for “mesdames”.
  2. The Hendon Mob Database doesn’t recognize the 1984 Employee event as an official WSOP tournament.
  3. The numbers are too small to be very meaningful, but it’s noteworthy that women have finished first 21 times, second 15 times, and third only 7 times. Winning 21 out of 43 times (48.8%) they’ve reached the final three and 21 out of 36 times (58.3%) they’ve reached heads-up are both extremely good rates. { May 22, 2017 Update: was missing one 2nd and one 3rd place finish. }

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