Want to learn more about Chris “Fox” Wallace? Learn about his poker history here:
Where is your original hometown, and where do you call home now?
I was raised in various cities all over the state of Michigan. I left Michigan for Minnesota in 1997. I split my time now between Vegas and Minnesota depending on the weather.
Where specifically are we most likely to see you playing cards these days?
The Wynn or Caesars, though I’m spending so much time launching my new tour that I haven’t played much since the WSOP.
When and how did you start playing poker?
I played home games with friends for pocket change for years in Ann Arbor, but I didn’t get serious about poker until my pal Adam Stemple loaned me a few books and got me started playing Holdem. Six months later I quit my job.
When and how did you decide to play poker professionally/seriously?
I really decided right from the start. I was playing Blackjack for part of my living, so playing cards for money wasn’t strange to me. I was a guitar builder and developed an allergy to the exotic hardwoods I was working with so I was suddenly without a career or any way to make a living. I asked Adam about playing poker for a living, and after that conversation I decided that I wanted to be a professional poker player. I started driving a cab to pay the bills and studying constantly. I was determined to make a living playing poker before I had even played my first hand of Texas Holdem.
What do you consider your proudest poker achievements?
Surviving Black Friday. My bankroll was decimated and my primary source of income was gone. I hit the road and found the softest tournament fields and the best cash games and stayed in cheap hotels grinding it out. It took over a year to have a comfortable bankroll, and I spent 8 months of that year on the road, but I did it. There is a lot of luck in winning a big tournament, but surviving Black Friday the way I did was all about hard work, so I’m really proud of it.
The bracelet is obviously a big one too. If I could pick one tournament to win, it would always have been the $10k HORSE. Since I started playing poker I have always thought that was the one to win and after playing HORSE for so many years online, it was the one I wanted.
When and how did you start coaching others?
In 2005 I was writing a blog for pocketfives.com and some people started asking about coaching. I spent a few months learning about education and how people learn and then started taking students. I mostly coached sit and go strategy back then. One of my students turned into a serious grinder and made over a hundred thousand dollars playing single table tournaments on Poker Stars in 2008. Since then I have helped a lot of people turn pro or semi-pro and I’m very proud of what my students have accomplished.
What is your coaching specialty? Do you consider yourself a ‘specialist’ in any games, and if so, please say which games and why.
I feel like I can coach anything and my focus is always on the money. I can’t teach you how to have more fun, but I can help you make more money. I have a lot of mixed game students, but my no-limit cash and tournament students have also done very well. My strength is in helping students figure out how they learn the best and then finding ways for them to make money with the games they like and in ways that fit where they live and what hours they can play.
What is your goal in providing coaching through Red Chip Poker? What do you hope to achieve for our members?
I want to mix it up. Mixed games, tilt control, bankroll management, anything that a poker player needs to know that isn’t already covered. I’m hoping that I can broaden the spectrum of videos and coaching available on Red Chip and learn some things too!
Please share a coaching success story with us:
I have a student who has been taking lessons on and off for a number of years. He has probably taken around 100 hours of coaching, which is the highest amount of time I have with any student. He plays $2-5 no-limit holdem for a living in California now, and makes significantly more money than he did in his job. I know that I helped him learn to make a better living, but I also saw a big jump in his confidence as a person when he was able to make a living on his own simply because he studied hard and played well.
Do you have a professional career / background outside of poker?
I do some writing, and I just launched NextLevel.poker, a poker tour that will be coming to venues all over the world soon, but poker is my primary source of income.
What are your favorite hobbies and pursuits outside of poker?
I love hiking and photography. Traveling to new places to take pictures is my favorite non-poker activity.
Have you written any poker books?
Yes, you can find them here: www.nolimitsbook.com
Anything else you can think of?
My blog is at foxpoker.com and my twitter handle is @foxpokerfox. I’m getting pretty serious about photography and I run the Next Level Poker Tour. My girlfriend is Jordan Handrich, a poker pro and attorney who works for Verstandig Law, the gambler’s law firm that represents many poker pros.
Rapid Fire Fun Questions:
Favorite color: Blue
Favorite starting hand: Aces in holdem, 345sss in Stud/8
Favorite poker room: Anywhere in the Caribbean
Last song you listened to: Old Friend by Derek Trucks and Warren Haynes (youtube it)
Waffles or pancakes: Damn, don’t make me choose. Pancakes if they are really good. Pancakes have a higher ceiling but a lower floor. Way more variance in pancakes. The corn pancake at Tom’s Urban 24 in Vegas is the nuts.
Favorite drink: Corona
Favorite thing to cook: Rainbow Trout cooked in butter.
Do you have a lucky object?: Yes, my work ethic.
Favorite board game: Cards Against Humanity