Chess Room Newsletter #403 | Mechanics' Institute

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Chess Room Newsletter #403

Gens Una Sumus!

Newsletter #403, 6/25/2008
"I got strong ideas about my house. I’m going to hire the best architect and have him build it in the shape of a rook. Yeah, that’s for me. Class. Spiral staircases, parapets, everything. I want to live the rest of my life in a house built exactly like a rook."

~Bobby Fischer
1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) Daniel Naroditsky featured in San Francisco Chronicle
3) 12th North American FIDE Invitational in Chicago underway
4) Here and There
1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
Five rounds into the Summer Tuesday Night Marathon IM Ricardo DeGuzman and WIM Batchimeg Tuvshintugs lead the field with 4.5 points. Tied for third at 4 are NM Albert Rich and Experts Victor Ossipov and Oleg Shaknazarov.

IM Ricardo DeGuzman and NM Sam Shankland shared top honors at 4.5 from 5 in the 8th Annual William Addison G/45 held this past Saturday to honor the former Interzonalist and US Olympiad team member who served as the Mechanics' Chess Director in the late 1960s.

Don't miss the newly redesigned MI website at MI webmaster Michael Pruess has done an excellent job of making the site cleaner and easier to navigate.

Last Sunday IM David Pruess, assisted by NM Michael Aigner, taught the first session of the new MI chess school for top young talents. Go to Michael's blog at for more information on this event.

Michael's site is the place to go to for up to date news on Northern California players. He has very detailed round by round reports on MI member Gregory Young's tie for first in the 2008 US Junior Closed in Lindsborg, Kansas. Well done Gregory!

Another MI young talent, World Under 12 Champion Daniel Naroditsky, has been active recently . Michael writes, " Danya qualified for the round of 16 in the Mainz Chess Classic online Chess 960 Blitz tournament on the Internet Chess Club. He will face British GM Gawain Jones (aka VerdeNotte on ICC) in the knockout format. The winner probably faces GM Hikaru Nakamura (aka Smallville) in the quarterfinals. The action begins on Sunday at 12:00noon Pacific time. Type "follow Danya" to watch our local hero play!
2) Daniel Naroditsky featured in San Francisco Chronicle
This past Sunday the magazine section of the San Francisco Chronicle ran an article by Alice Chen entitled Playing for Keeps, Mental gymnastics: Lots of action, little money for three locals that starts out:

The Bay Area is packed with brainiacs; there are the obvious ones - Steve Jobs, Jerry Yang, the Google guys. But what about the lesser-known, yet enormously talented ones?

Daniel Naroditsky ranks first in the world in chess for boys ages 12 and under. Chester Santos holds the USA Memory Championship title. And Leyan Lo won the most recent national Rubik's Cube competition.

How did these people develop their obsessions? What does it take to dominate a game?

Daniel Naroditsky received an 800-page music encyclopedia when he turned 7. As he flipped through the book, he spotted an error: A composer's birthday was one year off. None of the dozen adults in the room, including Daniel's mother, a professional pianist, had heard of the composer. They checked an alternate source and confirmed the mistake.

A few years later, Daniel was traveling to a chess tournament four hours away. He was bored, opened his father's computer and read through all of the countries and their capitals. He became very frustrated afterward when he couldn't recall three of the countries.

Daniel's phenomenal memory is just one of several driving forces behind his recent world victory in chess for boys ages 12 and under. Other factors include intelligence, discipline, talent, time and money.

I met Daniel recently at his father Vladimir's office at the Vega Capital Group, a boutique investment firm in downtown San Francisco. I'd heard so much about his accomplishments that I forgot how young he'd look. When I greeted him and his brother Alan, 17, they didn't smile and barely spoke.

"How's your spring break?" I asked.

They haven't had a vacation, Vladimir replied. Daniel, a sixth-grade student at Crystal Springs Upland School in Hillsborough, just returned from an adult chess tournament in Reno. He came to a draw with a 42-year-old grandmaster and tied two others for second place. Daniel was leaving for another tournament in Oklahoma in two days.

Daniel studies chess at least 24 hours a week. He plays 20-minute games, records every move of his tournaments and analyzes previous games for mistakes. He pores over the 1,000 chess books in his personal library, and sometimes Vladimir reads him chess books in Russian, their native language. They can spend two hours talking about one page.

"It's like reading a graduate-level science textbook," says Vladimir, who used to play chess competitively in his home country of Ukraine. "We'll talk about what the grandmaster thinks, his mistakes, and what Daniel thinks is the next move. He'll often predict it."

A good chess book can take a year to read, and Daniel often rereads them. He memorizes the strategies down to player names, game dates and the page numbers of the book they're described in. Daniel also types notes on his computer and is writing an advanced chess textbook. "I was thinking about new ways to improve," he explains

Go to for the entire article.
3) 12th North American FIDE Invitational in Chicago underway
The 12th North American FIDE Invitational, held in Chicago and organized by Sevan Muradian, has started.

After 5 rounds the standings are:

1st-- 4.5/5

FM Florin Felecan

2-3rd- 3.5/5

FM Marc Arnold
FM Albert Chow

3rd - 5th place - 2.5/5

IM Angelo Young
IM Kirill Kuderinov
IM Emory Tate

7th - 8th place - 1.5/5

WFM Yuanling Yuan
IM-elect Mehmed Pasalic

9-10th place - 1/5

FM Jim Dean
FM Aleksander Stamnov

IM Norm - 6.5/9
WGM norm - 5.5/9
WIM norm - 4.0/9

For events specifics including round times visit -

Games are being broadcast live on the MonRoi World Databank of Chess -
4) Here and There,28804,1815747_1815707_1815674,00.html

Mea Culpa! In Newsletter #402 I wrote that only once have two Americans appeared on the top ten list simultaneously - Gata Kamsky and Yasser Seirawan on the July 1990 list at number 8 and 10 respectively. In fact Bobby Fischer (#1) and Lubos Kavalek (#10) first performed the trick in 1974.

The recent June First Saturday event saw three players from North America taking part with Mark Bluvshtein of Canada taking top honors.

Final standings:
1. GM Bluvshtein (CAN, 2544) -10 outof 13,
2. FM Nguyen, Huynh Minh Huy (VIE,2482) - 9,
3. IM Wang, Puchen (NZL, 2397) -8½,
4. IM Bui, Vinh (VIE, 2448) - 8,
5. IM Sethuraman (IND, 2425) - 7½,
6. IM Roussel-Roozmon (CAN, 2489)- 7,
7. GM Czebe (HUN, 2513) - 6½,
8-9. GM Fogarasi (HUN, 2426) andLiu, Qingnan (CHN, 2344) - 6,
10-11. IM/WGM Rajlich, Iweta (POL,2411) and FM Duong, The Anh (VIE,2403) - 5½,
12. IM Paschall (USA, 2330) - 4½,
13. IM Kobese (RSA, 2396) - 4,
14. Macak (SVK, 2342) - 3.

Marc Newman, webmaster for the Berkeley Chess School writes:

Hi John,

I really like the new MI website! The feature that allows you to quickly move forward and backward through the newsletters works really well.

The Berkeley Chess Club is going to be moving to Friday evenings, the “traditional” day for the BCC historically. This Sunday is the final day of the current tournament and after we get a winner determined I will send you a note with results and the official new time change and dates of the next tournament.


P.S.--Irina Krush did a great job for us last week and was very popular with the students.

John Blackstone of Las Vegas, who represented the United States in the World Student Team Championships back in the late 1960s (Ybbs 1968), submits this game from the early years of chess in California.
Adams,L - Hubbell,S [C44]
20th Century Tour CA,California, 1901
1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 Nxd4 4.Nxe5 Ne6 5.Nc3 Bb4 6.Bd2 Nf6 7.f3 0-0 8.Bc4 d69.Nd3 Ba5 10.Ne2 Bb6 11.Bc3 Bd7 12.Qd2 a5 13.Ndf4 Re8 14.Bxe6 Bxe6 15.Nxe6 Rxe616.0-0-0 c6 17.Nf4 Re8 18.Rhe1 Bc7 19.g4 h6 20.Nh5 Nxh5 21.gxh5 Qg5 22.f4 Qxh523.Rg1 Kf8 24.Qd4 f6 25.Rxg7 1-0Hello everybody,

We are currently working on episode 6. This episode will come out at the end of June. We need your help with this episode. There's a lot of chess in the community, such as a big chess board at a busy town square, a chess bumper sticker on somebody's car, chess tables at a coffee house, and etc.

Where do you see chess in your community? Take a picture of it and we'll share it on this episode!

Please send your picture(s) to us no later than June 27th. We also need your first/last name and where the picture was taken. We prefer jpeg picture format. Our e-mail address is

Thank you!

"Chess Divas" Lauren and Barbara

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