Frenchman Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier was already an online gaming star before he became a poker player. After moving to Korea in 2001, ElkY was a regular face at the World Cyber Games and in the Korean Pro Gaming league, thanks to his skill at computer strategy games. His speciality was Starcraft, a game in which he is still one of the top ranking players. With poker, he found a way to turn this talent into huge cash prizes.
After a friend introduced him to PokerStars, ElkY realized many of the skills he'd picked up in pro gaming were well suited to poker. It wasn't long before he was winning money on a regular basis. Since then, ElkY has become one of PokerStars highest earners, and was the first player ever to reach the Supernova Elite level in the PokerStars VIP Club. But it isn't just online where he has scored big. ElkY came 2nd in the PokerStars.com EPT Copenhagen event in 2007, taking home prize money of $399,953. Later that year, he made his first World Series final table, finishing 9th in the $2,500 No Limit Hold'em event for $29,124. His crowning achievement came in early 2008 at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. ElkY beat a field of 1,013 to win a massive $2,000,000. He also performed well at the 2008 PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker, cashing in several events for well over $400,000 - including a 2nd place finish in the $25,500 No Limit Hold'em Heads-Up event, worth $320,000, and his hot streak continued in October 2008, when he won the World Poker Tour Festa al Lago $15,000 event at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, collecting $1,411,015 in first place prize money.
ElkY kicked off 2009 with a triumphant return to the PCA - taking first place in the High Roller event for a cash of $433,500. A third place at the NBC National Heads-up Poker Championship netted the Frenchmen a further $125,000 in March 2009, and his next big score came in the WPT World Championship, held at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, where he finished in third position for $776,245. He then added not one, but two World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) titles to his list of achievements, winning the $530, 1 rebuy, 1 add-on No Limit Hold’em event for $232,730, and then the $215 No Limit Hold’em for a further $263,323.
With an incredible thirst for tournament action, ElkY doesn’t get much spare time. When he does, he still enjoys keeping his foot in the computer gaming world, playing whenever he can. He also recently suggested that he plans to relocate to London, a move that will bring him even closer to the biggest poker events in Europe.
Whether at the tables or in cyber space, it’s clear that ElkY has what it takes to succeed at anything he turns his hand to. It’ll be hard to top his PCA victory, but don’t bet against there being more major tournament wins in years to come. He is a member of Team PokerStars Pro and plays online using the screen name ‘ElkY’.
|EPT Copenhagen Dkr 37,500 Main Event||January 2007||2nd||$399,953|
|2007 WSOP $2,500 No Limit Hold’em||June 2007||9th||$29,124|
|APPT Macau $2,500 Main Event||November 2007||5th||$48,576|
|EPT PokerStars Caribbean Adventure||January 2008||1st||$2,000,000|
|PokerStars WCOOP $25,500 NLHE Heads-Up||September 2008||2nd||$320,000|
|WPT Festa al Lago $15,000||October 2008||1st||$1,411,015|
|EPT PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25k High Roller||January 2009||1st||$433,500|
|EPT Deauville High Roller Event||January 2009||3rd||$101,839|
|NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship||March 2009||3rd||$125,000|
|WPT World Championship||April 2009||3rd||$776,245|
|2009 WCOOP $530 NLHE 1R1A||September 2009||1st||$232,730|
|2009 WCOOP $215 NLHE||September 2009||1st||$263,323|
|Trophees Haussmann €3,000 Main Event||December 2010||1st||$147,000|
|LA Poker Classic $25,000 High Roller||February 2011||3rd||$146,055|
|EPT Madrid €25,000 High Roller||May 2011||1st||$779,221|
|EPT Madrid €10,000 High Roller||May 2011||1st||$227,087|
|2011 SCOOP $25,000 Heads-Up NLHE||May 2011||1st||$112,500|
|2011 WSOP $10,000 Seven Card Stud||June 2011||1st||$331,639|