The third episode this season of the Ultimate Blackjack Tour features $1.3 million in prize money on the line, as well as a coveted UBT championship medallion.
1- Erica Schoenberg - 27 years old. Her parents met at the track, and she's been playing blackjack since she was a teenager. She even credits the game with helping her to learn math in school. Admits that she uses her looks to distract opponents.
2- Ron Saccavino - An online qualifier.
3- Tyrone Jackson - 39 years old. Born and raised in Chicago. Has been playing blackjack for 12 years. His goal is to be the #1 tournament player in the world. He's a real estate developer who does a lot of work on Chicago's south side. Also an avid golfer.
4- David "Devilfish" Ulliott - From Hull, England. A master blackjack player who has won numerous tournaments. Given his nickname by Chinese players. Says that he loves music and would like to have been one of the Rolling Stones.
5- Williard Dubois - A skilled blackjack player and card counter, Williard wears disguises to prevent the casinos from learning his true identity.
6- Lupe Sherman - Born in Mexico City, but has lived in Las Vegas for 32 years. Has been seriously playing blackjack for 10 years, and she plays 5 days a week. She also makes money as an interior decorator. Doesn't believe in doing things halfway and tries not to get emotional at the table. Believes in acting like a lady.
7- Fred David - A master poker player.
Hand 1 - The dealer shows a 5 with a Queen in the hole. Erica gets a pair of 8s and splits them. She receives a 14 and 12 and stands. Ron stays on a 20. Tyrone stays on a 19. David doubles down on 11. Williard splits. Lupe stays on a 20. Fred stays on a 20. David draws to 21.
The dealer draws to 18. Almost all the players win. Erica, however, loses and falls into last place.
Hand 3- Tyrone bets $14,000 and hits on a 15. He busts and falls into last place.
Erica suffered tough losses on hands 2, 3, and 4. She was in last place by hand 6. At this point, she went all-in, staying on a 17. The dealer busted and Erica jumped back up into the pack and sent Tyrone down into last place.
Hand 8 - This is an Elimination Round. Tyrone is in last place at $44,000. If he doesn't make a move here, it will be an early exit for the "Chicago Dawg."
Erica bets $17,000. Ron bets $44,000. Tyrone bets $22,000. David bets $5,000. Williard bets $5,000. Lupe bets $4,000. Fred bets $14,000.
Lupe hits a blackjack. The dealer shows a Jack with an Ace in the hole. With his sizeable bet, Ron can't beat the dealer blackjack and is the first player to be eliminated. David Ulliott is now in first place with $106,500.
Hand 9 - Tyrone bets $7,000. He gets a 19, but the dealer beats him. He drops down to a pitiful $15,000 in chips.
But Tyrone isn't one to give up. Over the next several hands, he makes big wager after big wager. His bold play, coupled with a little luck, allows him to impressively climb back to a total of $72,000.
Hand 15 - Fred bet half his chips in an effort to gain some ground on the leaders. He busted, however, and dropped into last place with an elimination round coming up.
Hand 16 - Another Elimination Round. Fred David is on the bubble. David bets $1,000. Williard bets $4,000. Lupe bets $4,000. Fred goes for broke and goes all-in. Erica bets $1,000. Tyrone bets $20,000.
Tyrone hits a blackjack. Fred gets a 19. The dealer is showing a Queen with a 2 in the hole. Williard busts. Lupe hits to 21. At this point, Fred David knows that he is eliminated. Erica busts. The dealer busts. Fred makes the long walk backstage.
Tyrone continues to climb up the leader board, but Lupe manages to stay ahead by employing a savvy surrender strategy. She surrenders on hands 17, 20, and 21, allowing her to take a $15,000 lead on her competition.
Hand 22 - David Ulliott makes another large wager and busts, sending him tumbling down the standings.
Hand 23 - David goes all-in to try and make a comeback. Unfortunately for him, the dealer makes 21, and the "Devilfish" is eliminated.
Hand 24 - Erica is in last place with $75,000. She bets $27,000. Tyrone has $85,000 and bets $20,000. Williard has $88,000 and bets $20,000. Lupe is in the lead with $91,500 and bets $20,000.
Erica is dealt a 12. Tyrone gets a 16, and Lupe is dealt a 9. Dealer shows a Jack with a Queen in the hole.
Erica hits to 20. Tyrone surrenders on a 16. Williard surrenders on an 18. Lupe surrenders on a 9. Erica's 20 gives her a push. Tyrone is back in last place.
Hand 25 - The final elimination hand. Tyrone is in last place and on the bubble. Tyrone decides to use his Secret Bet Card and heads to the privacy booth. Once inside, he reveals to us a wager of $74,000. Williard bets $1,000. Lupe bets $1,000. Erica also makes a secret bet, but admits that she has no idea what she's going to wager. She ultimately bets $20,000.
Tyrone is dealt a 5. Williard is dealt a 6. Erica gets a 14, and Lupe has 17. The dealer shows an 8 with a King in the hole.
Tyrone hits to 21. Williard hits to 19. Lupe surrenders. Erica hits on 14 and draws to 18. She stays. Erica pushes. Tyrone reveals his secret bet and now has a total of $149,000 (pretty impressive considering he was on the bubble a few moments ago). Erica Schoenberg is eliminated.
We are now down to three players.
Shandi interviews Erica, asking her if she would have done anything differently. Erica responds that she was coming from behind all night and that made things harder for her. She admits playing the secret bet card was a mistake, but it really didn't matter in the end.
Hand 26 - Williard is now in last place and bets $26,000. Lupe bets $40,000. Tyrone bets $21,000.
Tyrone is dealt a 12, while Williard gets an 8, and Lupe is handed a 17. Williard hits to 13, then to 15, and then he stays. Lupe stays on 17, and Tyrone stays on a 12. The dealer is showing a 9 with a Jack in the hole.
Everyone loses on the hand, but Tyrone keeps his lead.
Hand 27 - Lupe uses her secret bet. She's in last place with $41,000 and decides to bet it all. Tyrone bets $18,000. Williard has $53,000, but he only bets $1,000.
Tyrone is dealt a 14. Williard gets a 10. Lupe receives an 18. The dealer shows a 4 with a Queen in the hole.
Lupe stays on 18. Tyrone stays on 14. Williard doubles down. The dealer busts, and Lupe moves into second place.
Hand 28 - Tyrone bets $23,000. Williard needs to make something happen, so he goes all-in for $55,000. Lupe has $82,000, and she decides to bet $81,000.
Tyrone gets a 14. Williard and Lupe both get a 15. The dealer is showing a King with a 10 in the hole.
Tyrone surrenders on a 14. Williard takes a hit and busts. He is eliminated from the game. Lupe hits and busts. She has $1,000 left, but there is no way she can catch up to Tyrone by the 30th hand.
The next hand is just a formality. Lupe surrenders and Tyrone wins the game. He finished with $135,000, but at one point he was down to $15,000 before his impressive comeback.
Join the Ultimate Blackjack Tour next time when the players will be: Klara Lato, Chuck Gorson, Michael Castellana, Steven Siu, Mark Kroon, Monica Reeves, Gary Debernardi.
Ultimate Blackjack Tour - Episode 1 - Episode 2 - Episode 3 - Episode 4 - Episode 5 - Episode 6