Phil Laak Poker Endurance Challenge Over, 115 Hours New Record


June 7, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

In what can only be described as an amazing display of endurance and charity, Phil Laak’s Guinness World Record attempt for continuous poker play has finally come to an end, 115 hours after it began. Playing for the record and for the charitable organization, Camp Sunshine, Laak originally intended to stay at the Bellagio poker room table for 80 hours. Almost a day and a half after hitting the 80-hour mark, the Unabomber, with girlfriend Jennifer Tilly at his side, decided to cash in his chips.

Playing a $10/$20 NJo-Limit Hold’em table, Laak ended his run of nearly 5 days up $6766. Portions of his winnings, as well earnings from prop bets and donations from a number of friends and other players will go to, a charitable organization that operates a retreat for children with life-threatening illnesses.

Amazingly, Laak pulled off the poker marathon with absolutely no stimulants of any kind.  No coffee, no  sodas, no energy drinks, no caffeine whatsoever. He credits his fitness for this challenge to his nutritionist, All American Dave, who kept the Unabomber fed, healthy and alert throughout the challenge. On a diet geared to keep Laak’s blood sugar constant, avoiding spiked insulin levels and the resulting crash, the personal fitness trainer from Las Vegas (whose real name is David Swanson) delivered meals to Laak during the entire ordeal, once Tweeting  “@RealPhilLaak fuel truck pulling up in 15 minutes!!”

Laak remained remarkably fit and alert during the World Record try, at one point dropping to the ground to perform 30 push-ups in exchange for a $1000 donation to Camp Sunshine.  With only 5-minute breaks every hour (which were allowed to be accumulated), Laak did experience some minor physical discomforts as the hours and days ground on, at one point complaining, “I’ve got itchy-ass syndrome a little bit, but I got some talcum powder on my last break.”

Despite the obvious aches and pains one would expect from such a marathon, Laak was happy and upbeat throughout, calling the endurance challenge “one of the most wonderful journeys I’ve ever taken. It’s touchingly human and beautiful on so many levels.” As he stacked his final chips and wrapped up the last of his interviews and photo opportunities, Laak exclaimed, “I have never had more fun playing poker in my entire life.”

Great job Phil … sleep tight!

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