David Peat, better known as Viffer in the poker world, is a now-retired, high-stakes, predominantly cash player known for his skill and unorthodox play but may be even better known for his off-felt antics. In fact, just Google “Viffer stories” and you’ll have enough bathroom reading—and viewing material—for quite some time.
Let’s just say he has lived the poker life to the fullest. And then some.
David Viffer on his poker life
Back in 2016, Viffer appeared on Joe Ingram’s Poker Life Podcast. It’s definitely worth a watch. He covers such topics as:
Poor bankroll management skills: David Peat isn’t known for his exceptional bankroll management skills. In fact, within the span of one week, he went from millionaire to being broke to millionaire. He claimed that because money was quite easy to come by in Las Vegas, someone would always stake him against a tourist with money Peat was confident he could beat.
Hard-partying lifestyle and rehab: At one point, Peat tried to improve his health; however, after a month, he lapsed and ended up using some really hard drugs including Ecstasy and cocaine, thus landing him in the hospital. Peat did a stint in an Arizona rehab where he made fellow residents uncomfortable with his gambling and sexual exploit stories. Even though he only lasted three weeks in a five-week program, Peat called his treatment a “life refresher course.”
Plans for the future: Today, the 40-something-year-old Viffer is settled with a family. Will this last? Nobody knows.
“My poker career is over; I don’t find it interesting any more. It’s time to look for something new.”
Viffer versus Jungleman
David Peat has been embroiled in a tiff with Dan “Jungleman” Cates regarding the infamous Durrrr Challenge that Cates and Dwan have been trying to finish since 2010. Then, in 2013 Peat and Cates hurled insults at each other over some side bets, traded live action, and resulting debt owed. Check out this video for more information, and there is also a rather lengthy TwoPlusTwo forum on the whole situation.
Taking on Alec Torelli
Back in October, 2011, David Peat was again in the news after he accused Alec “Traheho” Torelli of stealing $150,000 from a backer of Mark “PerkyShmerky” Lerner. This began after Torelli—in another TwoPlusTwo forum—alleged that Lerner owed him $85,000. This accusation was quite interesting given that Torelli served on the Epic Poker League’s ethics committee.
The whole story began in 2007 on Full Tilt Poker when Torelli allegedly used a tell so Perky could chip dump to him. Of course, Torelli denied any allegations and offered $50,000 to prove his case. Peat agreed to the posting and then all hell broke loose.
In his defense, Torelli said he had no idea if Perky was scamming anyone and, therefore, had no liability for Perky allegedly chip dumping someone else’s money. Torelli claimed he was simply doing what Perky asked and had no idea whose money it was. Obviously, only those “in the know” have the full story. The rest is speculative; however, neither man has the best reputation for playing fair and square. (Related: See Doug Polk’s analysis of Torelli’s alleged angle shoot on Poker Night in America.)
The Viffer Show”: David Peat in action
As mentioned, Peat is known for his truly unorthodox playing style: raise, mini donk, bet, call, mini raise, all-in. It doesn’t really matter. Peat will play them all. His VPIP (voluntary put in pot) and PFR (preflop raise) are typically quite large all of the time.
Let’s take a look at six classic Viffer hands from PAD plus a Full Tilt hand.
2. Elezra exacts his revenge against Viffer in this Full Tilt Poker video.
3. In this “$150,000 Cash Game” episode, Viffer squares off against PAD newbie (at the time) Olivier Busquet who looks quite young. In this hand Peat, —according to the always excitable Phil Laak—is a “suck out artiste.” Understandably, Busquet isn’t pleased.
4. Speaking of Laak, here are two entertaining PAD hands between Viffer and Jennifer Tilly.
5. Unpredictable David Peat takes on hyper-aggressive Tom Dwan in this entertaining bluff-off. There is definitely no shortage of guts here.
6. Here’s a lucky hand for Peat that spurs a classic Phil Hellmuth tirade. Poker does involve an element of luck, no matter how good you are. Nice purse, by the way.
At any rate, David Peat is definitely an interesting character who, I’m sure, will continue the widely popular Viffer stories of which legends are made. If you like, you can follow Peat on Twitter.
What do you think of David Peat?
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Until next time.
Read more from Upswing Poker:
- Isaac Haxton: On Poker and Refusing Poker Stars’ Olive Branch
- Poker Angle Shooting: The String Bet and String Raise
- Ultimate Bet and Absolute Poker: What Happened?
Natalie Faulk is a Las Vegas-based freelance writer/blogger and the author of several books. She is an avid low-stakes (for now) poker player and huge Vegas Golden Knights fan.