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Greg Raymer Biography

Greg Raymer Biography
by Chad Holloway of

Greg Raymer was born on June 25, 1964 in Minot, North Dakota. During his childhood, Raymer moved numerous times as an "Air Force brat." His family first relocated to Lansing, Michigan until he was 11 years-old, then to Clearwater, Florida, and finally to a suburb of St. Louis, Missouri. Raymer received a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Missouri at Rolla. Next, Raymer attended the University of Minnesota where he received a M.S. in biochemistry, and then a J.D. from the University Of Minnesota School Of Law.

While attending college in Minnesota, Raymer made extra cash by playing blackjack as a card counter in the various Indian casinos throughout the state. He also worked part-time as a DJ and dabbled in stand-up comedy. After graduating, Raymer took a job in Chicago with a big I.P. litigation law firm. Since he couldn't find a blackjack game in Chicago, he decided to concentrate on poker. He purchased some books and started playing $3-$6 limit hold'em. When Raymer relocated to San Diego and Connecticut for work, he gradually moved up to higher limits such as $10-$20, $20-$40, and even $150-$300. Eventually Raymer earned a reputation as one of the best local tournament players at Foxwoods Casino.

In 2001, Raymer had his first cash in a World Series of Poker event, finishing 12th in a $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo. At the 2002 W.S.O.P., Raymer wore a pair of lizard eye sunglasses as a sort of joke, but when he discovered that it threw his opponents off, he began wearing them at all major tournaments. That same year, Raymer finished 80th out of 631 participants in the Main Event.

Raymer's biggest poker accomplishment came when he turned a $160 double-shootout World Series qualifier victory on Poker Stars into $5 million, which was the largest cash prize in poker history at the time, by outlasting 2,575 other players to take down the 2004 W.S.O.P. Main Event. Proving he was no fluke, Raymer shocked the poker world by going deep into the 2005 Main Event, finishing 25th out of a field of 5,619, taking home $304,680 for his efforts.

Raymer has not only found success around the table but on the virtual felt as well. On September 17, 2007, Raymer beat more than 700 people in event #6, a $320 Rebuy Pot Limit Omaha tournament, in the Pokerstars World Championship of Online Poker to claim his second championship bracelet. He also took second in the first quarterly $1,000,000 guaranteed tournament on Pokerstars in March, 2006, winning $168,362.

Raymer is also known as the "Fossilman" in the poker world because of his trademark fossil card protectors, which he once sold to help build his poker bankroll. Raymer currently resides in Raleigh, North Carolina with his wife, Cheryl, and daughter, Sophie.

Aside from spending time with his family, Raymer enjoys playing golf and buying antiques for his home. In a 2006 interview, Raymer revealed that he was considering running for Vice-President of the United States for the Libertarian Party. Raymer is a member of Team Pokerstars and has more than $5,850,000 in lifetime tournament winnings.


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