Nico Bohny, left, and Antoine Ruel enjoy a Magical sunset

Grand Prix Torino is over and the winner comes from Switzerland: Nico Bohny defeats Antoine Ruel in a blisteringly fast final with 2-0 games!

What are the lessons that this three-day Grand Prix taught after all was said and done?

The three-day format was both a success and a hindrance. It was holiday weekend here in Italy, so many Italians went on holiday instead of playing in the Grand Prix. Spanish Regionals also clashed with GP Torino, so the Spanish players were very much underrepresented. The three-day format also was a success. One of the largest European PTQs was held on friday, with 301 players trying to get one of the two tickets to Kobe that were up for grabs.


The PTQ also brought us the most successful player of the weekend: Marco Lombardi from Italy not only went to the finals after nine plus two rounds of PTQ play, but also reached the Top 8 in the main event, playing another nine rounds and a quarterfinal before his Magic tires went flat. The other Italian in the Top 8, Giacomo Mallamaci from Torino, also took home the amateur prize. Most of the players on day two already had Pro points, but Mallamaci came as a blank slate and cashed in not only 800 US$ for a quarterfinal finish, but also an additional 1,500 US$ for his amateur win!

And Antoine Ruel has his 14th Grand Prix Top 8 under his belt. Everybody is eagerly awaiting the Ruel brother's performance at PT Charleston, together with Frank Karsten, but the next stop on the road is Tolouse! So join the coverage team and the moxradio reporters at GP Tolouse on June 24 and 25, three weeks from now!

Top 8 Bracket


Bram Snepvangers [NLD]

Giacomo Mallamaci [ITA]

Guillaume Wafo-Tapa [FRA]

Antoine Ruel [FRA]

Marco Lombardi [ITA]

Nico Bohny [CHE]

Pierre Canali [FRA]

Klaus Diete Jöns [GER]


Bram Snepvangers, 2-0

Antoine Ruel, 2-0

Nico Bohny, 2-1

Klaus Diete Jöns, 2-1


Antoine Ruel, 2-1

Nico Bohny, 2-0


Nico Bohny, 2-0

Pairings, Results, Standings


15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


Final 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

1. Nico Bohny $2,400
2. Antoine Ruel $1,700
3. Bram Snepvangers $1,200
4. Jöns, Klaus Dieter $1,000
5. Marco Lombardi $800
6. Guillaume Wafo-Tapa $800
7. Giacomo Mallamaci $800
8. Pierre Canali $800


Sunday, June 4: 7:27 p.m. - The final eight: T8 profiles

Nico Bohny

Age: 22
Hometown: Basel, Switzerland
Occupation: Elementary teacher in training
Tournament record: 3 byes, 12-3
"I didn't realize at first that I was top 8. I might even win this, but I don't except that to happen."
Deck: green/red base with multicolor splash

Pierre Canali

Age: 23
Hometown: Aix en-Provence, France
Occupation: Salsa instructor
Tournament record: 3 byes, 12-3
"It was so important for me to make Top 8. I didn't make Top 8 at PT Prague because I made a mistake. I didn't make a mistake this time! Everybody knows I'm good at constructed, but now I can prove that I am good in Limited, too. This format (RGD) feels a lot like constructed. I'm building my limited decks in this format like I would a constructed deck. I'm confident about this format, but Antoine is probably the best player in the Top 8 and the favorite."
Deck: green/black, splash white

Guillaume Wafo-Tapa

Age: 25
Hometown: Nantes, France
Occupation: Maths student
Tournament record: 2 byes, 12-2-1
"I'm very happy, this is my first GP top 8." Can you win this? "Yes!" (smiles)
Deck: green/red, splash black

Marco Lombardi

Age: 20
Hometown: Genua, Italy
Occupation: Student
Tournament record: 1 bye, 12-2-1
"I won a PT-slot yesterday in the PTQ. I thought I might just play the GP anyway, and I am very relaxed. A good weekend for me!"
Deck: red/white/blue

Antoine Ruel

Age: 26
Hometown: Montpellier, France
Occupation: professional Magic player
Tournament record: 3 byes, 13-2
"Magic earns me more money than poker. Poker is boring." -- "Making top 8 always feels good!" -- "In Charleston, I will be in the finals with my brother."
Deck: red/black/white

Klaus Dieter Jöns

Age: 22
Hometown: Tamm, Germany
Occupation: Physics student
Tournament record: 3 byes, 12-2-1
"Eternal Flame will burn forever!" -- "Actually, I think I might make the semifinals, unless I have to play Antoine first."
Deck: blue/white, splash black

Bram Snepvangers

Age: 30
Hometown: Houten, Netherlands
Occupation: Secretary in special position
Tournament record: 3 byes, 12-1-2
"If I win this, it might feel new. So far, it went well - a win for me is possible, and it's about time for it!"
Deck: red/green/black

Giacomo Mallamici

Age: 23
Hometown: Torino, Italy
Occupation: Student for shows, music and arts
Tournament record: 0 byes, 12-2-1 (and the only amateur in this T8!)
"It feels strange but good, making Top 8 in my own city. Especially since I failed to Top 32 at GP Bologna last year. It's great!"
Deck: green/red, multiple splash

Marco Lombardi

GP Totino
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Guillaume Wafo-Tapa

GP Torino
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Pierre Canali

GP Torino
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Nico Bohny

GP Torino
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Antoine Ruel

GP Torino
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Klaus Dieter Jons

GP Torino
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Giacomo Mallamaci

GP Torino
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Bram Snevangers

GP Torino
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Sunday, June 4: 8:34 p.m. - Quarterfinals: Klaus Dieter Jöns (GER)- Pierre Canali (FRA)

Klaus Kieter Jons

Jöns tried to talk Canali into a prize split before the game, but Canali had already split with a bunch of other people, so he declined for mathematical reasons.

Canali opened with Dryad Sophisticate and Sporeback Troll, while Jöns had a Terraformer. Jöns tried to be tricky and talked Canali into attacking with both creatures, and Canali let himself be tricked. Jöns blocked the Troll, and triumphantly played Carom, killing the Dryad, saving his Terraformer, and drawing a card. Except that Canali had a Carom as well, so the Terraformer died instead, and Jöns was set back quite a bit. He tried to come back with Stratozeppelid and Cerulean Sphinx. He offered the price split again when he played the Sphinx, but Canali declined again, letting him know that it would be dead as soon as he untapped. Sure enough, he had a Mortify, and he could continue attacking with his army, that had been reinforced by a Verdant Eidolon. At the end, Canali's Overwhelm was too much for Jöns to overcome.

Pierre Canali

In Game 2, Canali played a turn two Aquastrand Spider, that ended up dealing a surprising amount of damage, as the road was clear for quite a while: Mortify took out Jöns' Assault Zeppelid, and Revenant Patriarch traded against Sadistic Augermage. In the end, it was only stopped because it was fed to Elvish Skysweeper to take out Jöns' Stratozeppelid. However, the Spider came back a few turns later thanks to Mausoleum Turnkey, and could go on to to try and wreak some more havoc. The second time around, it proved to be somewhat less impressive: It threw himself in front of a Cerulean Sphinx that came into play after Jöns had turned Canali's Skysweeper into a 0/0 Spider, thanks to a Cytoshape. The Sphinx then did it's dirty work, and a third game was needed to determine the winner.

Jöns looked like a sure winner in Game 3, when he produced Azorius First-Wing, Ostiary Thrull, and Golgari Rotwurm early on, but Canali could muster a defence with Elvish Skysweeper, Aquastrand Spider, and Cytospawn Shambler. He was at five life when he stabilized, and seemed to have a real chance. However, a second Ostiary Thrull could eliminate Canali's key blocker, the Shambler, and that was the end of the game.

Klaus Dieter Jöns beat Pierre Canali, 2-1

Sunday, June 4: 8:53 p.m. - Quarterfinals: Bram Snepvangers (NLD) vs Giacomo Mallamaci (ITA)

Giacomo Mallamaci

Bram is a very experienced Pro Player from the Netherlands who has been on the train since 1998. With two PT top 8's and 6 GP Top 8's he is certainly not new to the single elimination rounds of a major event. I watched Bram draft and our friends from Moxradio will have the full run down of his picks. Here is the run down though, starting with a pair of mana fixers in the form of Civic Wayfinder and Elves of the Deep Shadow, Bram took a lot of powerful cards after that concentrating on G/R/B. Guildpact offered him many powerful cards but he needed to get some more cards to take care of his mana. Dissension offered him one Rakdos Carnarium and a tabling Vesper Ghoul but the Utopia Sprawls (tech stolen from Prague winner Takuya Osawa) were not in the packs passed to him, even though he was prepared to take them high. In the end he picked to Simic Signets to hopefully get him to his expensive spells sooner.

Giacomo on the other hand is a lot less experienced then Bram and only started attending GP's outside of Italy since last years GP Nottingham. His draft however had three of the much coveted karoos and a shockland in the form of Temple Garden, so his mana will be better the the dutch player's. His deck was mainly R/G with a very small white splash, making it consistent although he has some bombs in the form of a Skarrgan Skybreaker (which Osama Fujita used so effectively in Kuala Lumpur) and Ulasht, the Hate Seed, an insane card in his R/G, mostly creature, deck. Enough talk, lets get to the action already…

Game 1

The Spindown die was not good enough for Bram when Giacomo wanted to use it for highest chooses, Bram fetched one of his six-sided dice and asked if that was ok, Giacomo agreed but wanted to add a little twist: "One beats six." The Dutchman agreed and rolled… a six. Luckily for him the Italian only rolled a three and we were of with Bram starting.

Both players kept and a Signet followed by a Civic Wayfinder were the first plays of the game from Bram. He played a fourth turn Streetbreaker Wurm off the Signet when Giacomo finally cast his first spell, Viashino Fangtail. He wasn't blocking the Wurm, though, dropping to 12. A Demon's Jester from Bram and a Gruul Scrapper from the Italian clogged the ground, so Bram just attacked with the Imp.

The Scrapper entered the red zone to trade with the Wayfinder but Giacomo was able to follow with another Scrapper and a Thundersong Trumpeter. Bram attacked with the Jester again and played his most expensive spell, Living Inferno. Giacomo let out all sorts of sighs, weird sounds and the like and could only muster a Cytospawn Shambler in return. Bram activated the Inferno to get rid of everything on Giacomo's side except for the Shambler which he did do two damage to and followed that up with the Euthanist to kill it. That was enough for Giacomo and we were on to Game 2.

Bram Snepvangers 1-0 Giacomo Mallamaci

Game 2

Again both players were happy with their opening hands; however, they started playing spells sooner then last game. Bram started with an Elves of Deep Shadow but the Italian answered with a Silhana Ledgewalker and a Simic Guildmage. Bram cast a turn three Mossdog. But he couldn't block the Ledgewalker which enabled a bloodthirsted Bloodscale Prowler for Giacomo. The next turn the Italian tried to off the Mossdog with a Galvanic Arc, but Bram saved it with a