“After reaching 2100 USCF in 2015, my chess progress stagnated, but over these past few months I was able to put all the pieces together and reach 2200. My real breakthrough tournament was 3 months ago at the Golden State Open, where I scored 2.5/3 against FMs in the last 3 rounds to win the U2300 prize. After that, I knew it was just a matter of time until I reached NM, and in 2 more tournaments I had achieved my goal. It’s taken a while, but I’m glad I finally got there.”
Congratulations to Derek Zhang of Bellevue, Washington, who achieved a 2200 U.S. Chess rating as a result of scoring 5 of 7 points in the U2200 section at the 11th Annual Philadelphia Open, Philadelphia, Pa., April 12-16. Here is a link to the crosstable: http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain.php?201704167042.2
11th Annual Clark Harmon Memorial Open (April 1-2): The Harmon Memorial currently rotates between Oregon and Washington each year and was in Oregon this year. Clark was one of the Northwest’s premier players and ambassadors of the game for many decades. See more information about Clark here and here. After the original Neil Dale Memorial Open was cancelled due to the weather, the unique features of that tournament (one section, G/120;d5, under prizes at U2100, U1900, U1700, U1500, and U1300/unrated, bonus upset prize) were transferred over to this year’s Harmon Memorial (the Neil Dale Memorial was rescheduled with the Portland Spring Open and used the Spring Open format). This year’s Harmon Memorial got thirty-five players. Micah Smith was the TD on Saturday and Mike Morris was the TD on Sunday. Mike Lilly helped with registration on Saturday. Mike Lilly and Mike Morris both gave a short remembrance of Clark before round 1. FM Corey Russell, a player from Medford, finished first with 4.5/5 and won $210. Corey also qualifies for the Oregon Invitational Tournament as the top Oregon finisher. However, he certainly would have qualified for the Invitational anyway based on rating and will almost certainly qualify for the higher level State Championship which runs alongside the Invitational. NM Matt Zavortink and NM William Lapham tied for second with 4/5 and split the second and third place prizes, each winning $114. H.G. Pitre, a player from the Seattle area, Gavin Zhang, and Scott Levin split the 1st U2100, 1st U1900, and 2nd U2100 prizes with 3.5/5, each winning $65. H.G. also gained around 70 rating points. Alan Rhoade and Isaac Vega split the 2nd U1900 prize, each winning $27. Alan graciously donated his winnings to the Harmon Memorial Fund which we use to have a higher prize fund for the Harmon Memorial. Isaac also gained around 50 rating points. Ralph Anthony, a player from the Seattle area, won the 1st U1700 prize of $70 with 3/5 and gained around 50 rating points. Roshen Nair, Brian Berger, and Abbie Wu split the 2nd U1700 prize with 2.5/5, each winning $18. Abbie also gained around 125 rating points, achieved a new peak rating, and achieved her 5th, 4th Category norm and thus was awarded the 4th Category Title (her performance was good enough that she achieved 3rd and 2nd Category norms as well). Roshen also achieved his 5th, 3rd Category norm and thus was awarded the 3rd Category Title. Zoey Tang won the 1st U1500 prize of $70 with 2.5/5 and gained around 85 rating points and a new peak rating. Jerrold Richards won the 2nd U1500 prize of $53 with 2/5. Harry Buerer won the 1st U1300/unrated prize of $70 with 2/5. Austin Tang won the 2nd U1300/unrated prize of $53 with 1.5/5. Micah Smith had the idea of adding a bonus upset prize to at least one of our tournaments and it makes the most sense to have an upset prize at a big one section tournament. Since it’s a bonus prize that players can win in addition to the other prizes, we decided we should be a little more restrictive as to who is eligible for the prize and we decided that you have to have an established US Chess rating (played at least 26 rated games) to be able to win the prize. We also decided not to count draws as half of an upset as is sometimes done. Arliss Dietz won the bonus upset prize of $50 by beating a player rated 356 points higher. There was one player playing in his first US Chess rated tournament, Ray Bourke from Corvallis.
Anthony He became Washington State’s youngest ever FIDE Master on February 20, 2017 by scoring 5.5/9 at the 2017 WA State Chess Championship in Redmond. He gained 93.6 points to boost his FIDE rating over 2300. Anthony achieved the title 4 days after he turned age 12. Anthony is currently the US number 1 FIDE rated player in his age group (U-12). Congratulations, Anthony!
Quad 45 (March 18): This month the time control at the Quad 45 was changed from G/45;d15 to G/45;inc15. As far as we can tell, this is the first ever regular rated PCC tournament that used increment. There were several ideas behind switching from delay to increment. One reason is that increment is more fair than delay. For example, with a fifteen second delay, a player who uses one second on a move will have the same amount of time remaining for the game as a player who uses fifteen seconds, which doesn’t seem right. Another reason is that increment helps mitigate time pressure a lot better than delay. A third reason was simply to give players a little bit more overall time for their games. The round times for rounds 2 and 3 were pushed back slightly to accommodate expanding the time control as well as to give players a little bit more time off in between the rounds and the rounds are now scheduled at 10am, 12:30pm, and 3pm. This month’s Quad 45 was run by Micah Smith with assistance from Danny Phipps at registration, who also played in the event. It got a great turnout of twenty-eight players, tied for the second most ever at the Quad 45. Things worked out nicely this time in that we were able to simply have seven quads and didn’t have to adjust anything to avoid family members from having to play against each other and didn’t have to figure out where to put a five to seven player Swiss. One interesting thing that did crop up is that Jimmy Dee and Alex Gee had the exact same rating and one of them was going to have to be in Quad 5 and the other in Quad 6. Jimmy said he didn’t care which quad he was in and Alex said wanted to be in Quad 6 so he could be in the same quad as his two friends he came to the tournament with so Jimmy was put in Quad 5 and Alex was put in Quad 6. There was a clear winner in all seven sections. LM Carl Haessler won Quad 1 with 2/3 and won a book. Aaryan Deshpande, a player from the Seattle area, won Quad 2 with a perfect 3-0. He won a book and was also eligible to receive a trophy as a scholastic player who won his section with three points but declined. James Bean gained around 50 rating points in Quad 2. James Tsai won his quad at the Quad 45 for the second straight month, this time winning Quad 3 with 2.5/3. Quad 3 happened to be made up of the four players in the field who were rated in the 1500’s. James won a book and gained around 45 rating points. After gaining around 200 rating points from the 1st Annual Neil Dale Memorial Open, Zoey Tang added around 55 additional points to her rating by winning Quad 4 with 2.5/3. Quad 4 happened to be made up of the four players in the field who were rated in the 1400’s. She also won a book and a small trophy as a scholastic player who won her section with 2.5. Robert Bowden won Quad 5 with 2.5/3. He won a book, a small trophy as a scholastic player who won his section with 2.5, gained around 40 rating points, and achieved a new peak rating. Thomas Rolfs won Quad 6 with a perfect 3-0 and won a book. Max Alberhasky, who was playing in this first US Chess rated tournament, won Quad 7 with a perfect 3-0 and won a book. Henry Westlund added around 150 points to his provisional rating in Quad 7. There were three other players playing in their first US Chess rated tournament, Alex Gee, Benjamin Saunders, and James Hatch.
The 2016 WA G/60 Championship was held at Seattle Chess Club over winter break December 27-28. The tournament was hosted by the Washington Chess Federation and directed by Fred Kleist. 50 players took part in one large open section, up slightly from last year. FM Ignacio Perez repeated as the clear winner with an impressive 6/6, claiming the $300 first place prize. Life Master Viktors Pupols and a new unrated player named Jinfei Sun tied for second, each with 5.0/6. Canadian Shin Yuan Tian, rated only 1461 USCF, captured clear 3rd with 4.5/6, losing only to Perez in the final round. Travis Elisara, WCF Scholastic Director David Hendricks, Steve Buck, and Dan Kramlich split U1800 honors with 4.0 each. Bellevue’s Andy Tien won the U1600 prize with a cool 4 points. The youngest Velea sister, Sophie, took home U1400 honors with 3.5 points. Here is the link to the US Chess rating report: CLICK HERE.
14 players took part in the event held at the club site on Dec 17, 2016. Lennart Bjorksten was the chief TD. Gavin Zhang added to his rating because of his 4-0 final score. In the event held in Nov he tied for 3rd and in Oct his 3-0 score tied.
Naomi Bashkansky has just won the 2016 World School Chess Championship in the Girls Under 13 category, held on December 2 – 12 in Sochi, Russia. With 5 wins (full points) and 4 draws (half-points), she got 7 points in 9 games, and finished in the first place — without a single loss, undefeated.
As a winner she is awarded the Woman FIDE Master (WFM) title, and is invited (expenses paid) to the 2017 World School Chess Championship in Romania.
It should also be noted that Daniel Shubin, a 6th grader at Open Window School in Bellevue, participated in the boys U11 section and represented team USA in Sochi. In his first International event, Daniel scored 5 out of 9 (4 wins, 2 draws, 3 losses), an excellent result. He tied for 21 place out of 66 participants, congratulations Daniel!
Results are in for the 2016 Northwest Chess Open. Congratulations to Nick Raptis from Washington who took first place with 4.5 points good for $170.00. Nick double dipped over the weekend also tieing for 1st in the Masters Series of events which was hosted on Saturday by Josh Sinanan and the Washington Chess Federation. Nick played simultaneously in both events, but do not have to run far between moves as both events were in the same room at the Seattle Chess Club. Nick was nicked for a draw by up and coming AndreasFarny rated 1690, who held a rook and pawn end game even while one pawn down and Nick having pawns on his wings. Sharing 2nd place and 1st under 2000 with 4 points were Mary Kuhner, Eric Zhang and Joseph Frantz good for $80.00 each. Frantz had a perfect score of going into the last round but had the misfortune of having to play Nick, who by that time was able to focus his attention on just the one event. There was a three way tie for first in the under 1800 section with SteveBuck, Minda Chen and Andreas Farny each scoring 3.5 points. Even with her new found riches, Minda Chen didn’t have to worry like some rock star bands, because she already was able to get her picture on the cover of The Northwest Chess. Advaith Vijayakumar, Sophie Velea and Albert Li each picked up $110.00 of Christmas spending money by wining the under 1600, under 1400 and Under 1200 sections respectfully.
Total of 44 players including yours truly Duane Polich, the tournament organizer who sat in for one round as the house player. The event was a fundraiser for Northwest Chess and was able to raise $300.00 for the magazine.