Poker Pro ElkY Triumphs Over Fear of Heights (vid)

Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier may be known for his fearless style at live and online poker tables, but there are other things that can leave him feeling very scared – namely, heights. To combat this fear in true ElkY style, Grospellier set out to conquer it by taking the plunge at the highest bungee jump in the world. In Macau for the Asian Championship of Poker, the poker phenom thought it would be the perfect time to kill two birds with one stone. While he was not able to rack up the win in the poker tournament, his fear of heights is now dead as a doorknob, thanks to a 233 meter freefall bungee jump from the Macau tower.

Joined by fellow pro Eugene Katchalov, Grospellier rode to the top and got suited up for the jump with extreme trepidation. Was it safe? How would he be able to force himself to leap off the edge of the building? In the end, he did need a little help with the liftoff and certainly didn’t gain any points for style, but the adrenaline-racing jump was surely a success. Fans and friends watched as the talented poker pro bounced several times and was then released at the bottom of the building.

Going to extremes is nothing new for Grospellier and his Macau Tower jump is just the latest in his attempt to set the pace for those living the poker lifestyle. Born in France, poker was not the first calling for ElkY and he made his name in another game. For several years, he was regarded as one of the top StarCraft players in the world and is one of the few people that could support themselves solely from video game winnings. After retiring with an impressive record of StarCraft tournament victories and high finishes, ElkY turned his attention towards poker with the same studious attitude. Online, he became the first person to reach Supernova Elite status on PokerStars by earning more than one million player points in less than five months. In addition, Grospellier also went to the extreme by setting the Guinness World Record for multi-tabling with 62 tables of online poker being played simultaneously.

His poker accomplishments are great, but tackling such a primal fear was something completely different than battling on the felt or online poker table. The Macau Tower was a formidable adversary and at no point was ElkY sure that he would be able to follow up with his intended jump. However, Grospellier’s nerves of steel came through when it mattered and his reputation of living at the extremes remains completely intact. What’s next for ElkY? As proved by his poker and Macau tower accomplishments, the sky is truly the limit.