Play poker Poker overview history Poker variants
Home :: Poker

Carlos Mortensen

Carlos Mortensen
Mortensen at the $25,000 World Poker Tour No Limit Hold'em Championship
Nickname(s) El Matador
Born April 13, 1972
Ambato, Ecuador
World Series of Poker
Bracelet(s) 2
Money finish(es) 21
Highest ITM
Main Event finish
Winner, 2001
World Poker Tour
Title(s) 3
Final table(s) 5
Money finish(es) 15
European Poker Tour
Title(s) None
Final table(s) None
Money finish(es) 1
Information accurate as of 13 September 2010.

Juan Carlos Mortensen (born April 13, 1972 in Ambato, Ecuador) is a Spanish professional poker player of Danish descent and the only Hispanic Main Event winner of the World Series of Poker. Mortensen is known for his loose play, bluffing tactics, and interesting chip-stacking style.

Poker Career

World Series of Poker

Mortensen moved from Spain to the United States in the late 1990s to play poker. He won $1,500,000 at the 2001 World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event. He defeated a field of 613 players, including a very tough final table that included professional players Mike Matusow (6th), 1989 WSOP main event champion Phil Hellmuth (5th), Phil Gordon (4th), and Dewey Tomko (2nd). In the final hand, Mortensens' suited King-Queen out-drew and defeated Tomko's pocket aces, when Mortensens' hand improved to make a straight.

He won his second bracelet at the 2003 World Series of Poker in the $5,000 Limit Hold'em event, earning $251,680. He defeated professional player Mark Gregorich heads-up to win the title.

At the 2006 World Series of Poker Carlos made 3 final tables. He finished 9th in event #2 (NL Hold 'em) winning $71,617. He would once again finish 9th in event #6 (NL Hold 'em) earning him another $73,344. He came up just short of winning his 3rd bracelet in event #33 (Razz) where he finished runner-up to James Richburg earning him $94,908.

He is considered to be the last big-name poker professional to win the Main Event at the World Series of Poker. As a result of the poker boom which ignited itself not long after his win, the fields in that tournament have increased exponentially making it extraordinarily more difficult for individual players to maintain consistent success in it. A few other big-name players have made the final table in the post-boom years since his win, but none of them have managed as of 2012 to win the title. He finished 10th in the 2013 WSOP Main Event, being the "Final Table Bubble Boy."

World Series of Poker bracelets

Year Tournament Prize (US$)
2001 $10,000 No Limit Hold'em World Championship $1,500,000
2003 $5,000 Limit Hold'em $251,680

World Poker Tour

He also won the World Poker Tour (WPT) Doyle Brunson North American Poker Championship in 2004 for $1,000,000. Mortensen won the Season Five World Poker Tour championship event, and its $3,970,415 first prize and his second WPT title, making him the first player to ever win the World Championship events at both the World Series of Poker and the World Poker Tour.

In 2010 Mortensen won the Season Eight WPT Hollywood Poker Open. With this win, he passed Daniel Negreanu for first on the all-time WPT money list, and tied Gus Hansen for most WPT titles with three.

Other Poker Tournaments

Mortensen has also made the prize money in the World Heads-Up Poker Championship, and was a semi-finalist in the second season of the Poker Superstars Invitational Tournament.

Mortensen also had a good run at the 2007 European Poker Tour Main Event in Monte Carlo finishing 11th, going out to Joshua Prager after making a straight on the turn, but defeated by a flush on the river.

In 2006, he and his wife, fellow poker player Cecilia Reyes Mortensen, were divorced.

As of 2014, his total live tournament winnings exceed $11,400,000. His 21 cashes as the WSOP account for $3,080,524 of those winnings.