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Longtime BBZ student Razvan Belea on his €1.17M EPT Paris win

Longtime BBZ student Razvan Belea on his €1.17M EPT Paris win

We talk to longtime BBZ student Razvan Belea (‘RazvyQQ’ ) about his incredible success.

“I always felt I could do it.”

Those are the words of Romania’s Razvan Belea, known online and in the BBZ Poker community as ‘RazvyQQ’.

The ‘it’ he’s talking about?

That would be winning an enormous European Poker Tour (EPT) Main Event for a seven-figure score – Belea’s dream since he first discovered poker.

At the end of February 2023, Belea took down the €5,300 buy-in EPT Paris Main Event, defeating a 1,159-entry field to win a career-defining score of €1.17 million.

“I felt really comfortable there,” he tells the BBZ Blog. “It was one of the best tournaments I’ve played since I started playing poker. Of course, it helped that I ran so good. You can’t win a tournament like this without a good run. But I also took every spot.”

Belea, 34, has been a professional poker player for a decade and has been studying with BBZ Poker for several years now. Prior to Paris, he’d amassed $1.25 million in online cashes plus more than $100K in live earnings.

But a major breakout score eluded him. That’s why he studies with BBZ Poker even more than he plays poker.

“Jordan Drummond is one of my mentors,” says Belea. “I learned a lot from him, as well as apestyles, Jon Van Fleet. He’s an old friend of mine who I worked with even before joining BBZ.”

Having those crushers in your coaching corner is certainly going to give you the technical know-how. Belea relishes playing against the best in the game – “You can’t learn if you don’t make mistakes, right?” he says – and in Paris, he battled against the likes of Nick Petrangelo and Ben Heath.

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But to get the “can do” attitude that Belea possesses, he also put in work on the mental side of poker.

“I worked a few hours with Frank Hamel, BBZ Poker’s Performance Coach,” he says. “And my wife is also a mental coach for me. She studied psychology. I’ve had a lot of support over these years.”

Belea and his wife took a vacation to Paris and combined it with the EPT stop. He sold action, then ended up winning an online package for the event anyway.

He had a few days of sightseeing with his wife, and then he was ready to play.

“I always had this opinion about the dynamic in poker,” he says. “If you’re playing good, the hands that come to you will be good too. You can’t control what cards you get, but you can control how you play them. If you’re playing them all right, then eventually you can win.”

Six days of poker later, Belea had indeed won €1.17 million.

“All of my BBZ colleagues were going crazy,” he says. “They congratulated me and told me I played well. It was overwhelming, the number of messages I received.”

The result was special to Belea for obvious reasons, but he also thinks it has proven something to his friends and family.

“They knew I could manage myself and make money from poker, but I never had enough to buy an apartment or anything,” he says. “They weren’t sure where I was going in the direction of poker, but they were sure my life was fine and good and that I had money to pay my rent and utilities and stuff.

“But after this score, all of my friends were going crazy. They couldn’t believe it.”

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When we spoke to Belea in 2021, he told us it took his mother a while to understand what he was doing with his life. That’s all changed now.

“My family was really impressed with what I managed to do, they never thought I’d be able to do this,” he says.

Belea has also been receiving countless messages from poker players in Romania, many simply congratulating him on becoming the country’s first EPT champion.

But many of the messages were from people he had inspired, too.

“Romania is not a rich country and salaries are very poor,” he says. “People worry a lot about money. They often work jobs purely for money. They don’t think about themselves or what they want to do.

“I think I’ve opened a lot of people’s minds in Romania.”

Further Reading: The mindset of a professional poker player: BBZ Staking’s ‘RazvyQQ’ on his recent success

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