Cody Torke was kind enough to allow us to ask him a few questions recently, get to know the second person (and most recent!) to ever win a PIFT poker tournament, Event #2: $180 NLHE “Winners Shown”:
Schneids:Tell us a little bit about your poker playing history—how long, how often, what got you into poker, etc?
Cody: I started playing poker, like many others, during the Moneymaker poker boom in 2003 or 2004. While living in Mankato, college and hometown friends and I would play weekly home games and it seemed like almost everyone I knew was playing online at least a few nights a week. I would say I sharpened my skills through the next few years by playing tournaments on Full Tilt and Pokerstars a few nights a week. I really enjoy the game of Texas Holdem and played kind of as a second job throughout the years, making small profits until the online poker shutdown. After that I just basically threw in the towel and said I will wait until it is legalized/regulated. That is when I stated playing more frequently at Canterbury Park in live mtts. I never quit school or quit my job to play poker, it has always been more of a hobby for me. I am an Operations Engineer for a wholesale signage company. We focus on interior ADA (american disability act) signs with raised copy and braille but are not limited to that.
Schneids:Real cool. Sounds a lot like how I got into poker too. Do you have any favorite local poker superheroes or anyone who you credit for helping the development of your poker game?
Cody: As far as locals that have helped me with my game, I would have to mention Matt Williams and Brandt Wolf. I went to high school with both of them and they both had a very good run in the online poker world.
Schneids:Nice, I know I’ve tango’ed against Matt in a few Minnesota tourneys over the years. Not sure if I have with Brandt or not. What activities do you enjoy away from the felt?
Cody: Away from the felt I enjoy spending time with my wife Jenna, and two sons Caleb and Caden. My favorite hobby that consumes my life in the fall each year is hunting. I usually head west to my hometown of Granite Falls or further west to South Dakota or Wyoming. My family and I live in Waconia now so I spend a lot of time out ice fishing in the winter.
Schneids:When I’m ready to take PIFT on the road, I’ll have to try to get some destinations that are conducive to hunting and fishing and outdoor sports for ya so you’ll consider making a combo platter poker and outdoorsy trip out of it! On that note, what is it you like about PIFT that drew you to wanting to play last fall and will you be back to try to defend your title? You are the last person to win a “Winners Shown” event, after all…
Cody: PIFT drew me in because of the unique twist on the game. I ended up winning the inaugural $180 “Winners Shown” event. I have been checking back and just waiting for the next event and wondering what the new “twist” would be. So yes, I am planning on being there for at least one of the events next month. Canterbury Park is my favorite poker venue and I also look forward to the Fall Poker Classic each year!
Schneids:Awesome, I’m excited to see if you’ll be able to defend your “Winners Shown” title. One last Q before I let you go… You get to fill a table with whoever you want, living or dead, who’s invited and what is being played?
Cody: If I could fill the table with whoever I want I would choose: Me, Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, Annie Duke, Scotty Nguyen, Kevin Hart, John Juanda, Ben Lamb and we would be playing Texas Holdem “WINNERS SHOWN” of course!
Schneids:You’re too kind for giving our inaugural twist such a large stamp of approval, I love it. Thanks so much Cody for taking the time out of your day to answer a few questions with me. See you around the tables at the next PIFT events, and also at Canterbury’s Fall Poker Classic in October!