Mechanics' Institute Chess Club Newsletter #548
To my mind rating is overrated. I know that some grandmasters are willing to get themselves literally killed to gain two rating points. I simply don't care, and never did. I like to play and not protect every rating point There was a period when I was sixth in the world, and yet had no invitations to tournaments. Then, when I went down to twelfth, the invitations suddenly started flowing - thankfully people like me can rely on our name and not on our rating points. Perhaps others can't.
Boris Gelfand (after winning the 2011 Candidates Matches)
1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) Fide Live Ratings
3) Here and There
4) Western States Open
5) Upcoming Events
1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
FM Andy Lee and Experts Todd Rumph and James Jones share the lead at the midway point of the 57-player Dan Litowsky Tuesday Night Marathon with 3.5 from 4. The difference in age of the players must be close to a record ranging from the 94-year-old Litowsky to 5-year-old Chinguun Bayaraa.
John Ebert won the Bernardo Smith Amateur held August 20-21 with a score of 5-1. Tying for second at 4.5 in the event open to players with ratings below 1800 were juniors Emma Pierson and Anthony Zhou.
Congratulations to Uyangaa Byambaa who scored 5-1 to take second place in the Under 2100 section of the Manhattan Open last weekend. Ms. Byambaa's current rating is 2108, up 300 points from a year ago.
Book and equipment donations to the Mechanics' are always welcome and are tax deductible due to the M.I.'s 501(c) (3) nonprofit status. If you have any chess books or equipment that have been lying around unused for some time consider donating to the Mechanics'. You will not only get a tax write off but also the satisfaction of seeing things put to good use.
The US Chess League begins play next week. The Mechanics' roster for this season is.
2) Fide Live Ratings
The top five are
The top US players are Gata Kamsky at 2756 (#11) and Hikaru Nakamura at 2553 (#12).
Other US players over 2600 are: Alex Onischuk 2669, Yasser Seirawan 2652, Robert Hess 2616, Varuzhan Akobian 2613 (not including the recently concluded 1st Metropolitan International) and Yury Shulman 2608.
GM Sam Shankland has raised his rating to 2553 FIDE (up from 2498 last year at the same time) by virtue of second place finishes at Biel and the 20th ZMDI Open in Dresden this past month.
3) Here and There
The Mechanics' Chess Club has received many donations of books and magazines over the years and they are always put to good use. Some go to the MI library, while others, which are already in the collection, are given as prizes to junior players. Occasionally something unusual pops up in the way of a long-forgotten magazine, newsletter or game score. If the ephemera has a California connection it is shared with Kerry Lawless, the founder and driving force behind Chess Dryad (www.chessdryad.com), the definitive site for all things related to the history of chess in California.
Sometimes unusual things turn up. A recent donation by Rosalyn Heimberg of her late husband Tom's chess treasures was full of little surprises.
Tom Heimberg (1937-20067), in addition to playing key roles with the Oakland Symphony and the San Francisco Symphony and Opera Orchestra, was also a keen chess player dating back to his days as a high school student in Los Angeles. Among the donated items from his archives were two scoresheets containing two high school encounters with Santa Rosa Expert John Jaffray who plays at the Mechanics' from time to time. The games date back to 1953!
Heimberg was a good player for his era and Chess Review for February 1963 (p. 37), writes "Thomas Heimberg chalked up a 7-0 "picket fence" in the Mechanics' Institute Open, well ahead of R. Menaster, 5 1/2 - 1/2. "
A year after this result Heimberg found himself in Paris and competed internationally while based in Europe. Among his papers was an obscure 4-page newsletter with no title devoted to chess played primarily, but not exclusively by US military personnel. Edited by Robert Karch, the focus of this one issue devoted to the European Chess District was on a Swiss tournament held in Chiemsee, Germany from November 6-8, 1964. The event was won by the infamous Norman Whitaker who scored 6-0, taking home $25, an ivory colored chess clock and a chess pin for his efforts. "Ironman" Mike Shahade was among those who tied for second.
NM John Blackstone of Los Vegas found the following item in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle for August 11th, 1921 (p. 3).
Ernest J Clarke, one time champion of the Queens County Chess Club of Richmond Hill, has accepted the offer of the San Francisco Chronicle to conduct a weekly chess department, in that journal collaborating with him are Arthur Stamer of the Mechanics' Institute Chess Club and A.J. Fink, the noted problem authority. Surely this will make a winning team. Mr Clarke has considerable editorial experience and has long been known as an able player both here and in the West.
4) Western States Open
Oct. 21-23, 2011 GPP: 200 (Enhanced) NEVADA [American Classic & Heritage Event!!] 29th Annual SANDS REGENCY RENO-WESTERN STATES OPEN.6SS.40/2,20/1,G �. Sands Regency Hotel/Casino, 345 N. Arlington Ave., Reno, NV 89501. 1-800-648-3553 or (775) 348-2200. $$33,200 b/350, Gtd. $$21,750-$3000-2000-1500-1000-800-600-500-400-300-200 in Open Section plus � of all other prizes. 6 Sections: OPEN: EF:GMs & IMs free (enter by 10/1 or pay late fee), Masters $147, (2199/below)-$175. $$ Prizes 1-10 listed above, (2399-below) $1000, (2299-below) $1000. If a tie for 1st overall then 2 (G/10) playoff for $100 from prize fund. (Note: GM/IM w/free entry not eligible for class prizes 2399 and below; may elect to pay entry fee and become eligible). EXPERT: (2000-2199) EF: $146. $$2000-1000-500-400-300."A" Sec.(1800-1999) EF: $145, $$2000-1000-500-400-300."B" Sec.(1600-1799) EF: $144, $$1,800-900-500-400-300. "C" Sec.(1400-1599) EF: $143, $$1,600-800-500-400-300."D"/under Sec. (1399/below) EF:$142, $$1,400-700-400-300-200, (under 1200) - $600. (Unrated Players) EF: Free + must join USCF or increase membership for 1 additional year thru this tournament ($49 adults,$25 juniors) Prizes: Top unrated wins 1 yr. USCF membership plus trophy. Note: Unrated will be put in "D" Sect. unless requests to play up. Seniors (65+) additional prizes $$200; (Seniors not eligible: provisionally rated, unrated, masters); Club Championship $$800-400 decided by total score of 10 (and only 10) players from one club or area (not eligible - GMs, IMs, or unrated). Trophies to Top 3 (A-D Sections). ALL:EF $11 more if postmarked after 10/1 and $22 more if postmarked after 10/14 or at site. Do not mail after 10/14 or phone or email after 10/18. $20 off EF to Srs (65+). Players may play up. Unrated players not eligible for cash prizes except Open 1-10. Provisionally rated players may win up to 50% of 1st place money except open Section 1-10. CCA ratings may be used. Note pairings not changed for color alternation unless 3 in a row or a plus 3 and if the unlikely situation occurs 3 colors in a row may be assigned. Reg: (10/20) 5-8 pm, (10/21) 9:00-10 am. Rds 12-7, 10-6, 9:30-4:30. Byes available any round, if requested before 1st round (Open Section - 2 byes max.). SIDE EVENTS: Wed.(10/19) 7pm Clock Simul [40/2, G/1] (Including an analysis of YOUR game.GM Sergey Kudrin $30 (A great value!). Thurs (10/20) 5-7:30 pm "A Celebration of Life, GM Larry Evans" and lecture by IM John Donaldson -Free, 7:30 Simul GM Lubosh Kavalek (only $15!), 7:30 Blitz (5 min)Tourney ($20-80% to prize fund). Sat 10/22 (3-4:30pm)IM John Donaldson Clinic(Game/Position Analysis) - Free. Sun. (10/23) Quick Tourney (G/25) 5 Rd. Swiss ($20) [12 (Noon)-5pm] 80% to prize fund. ENT: Make checks payable and send to: SANDS REGENCY (address above) HR: $29! (Sun-Thurs) & $59! (Fri-Sat) + 13.5% tax. (mention CHESSOCT & reserve by 10/5/10 to guarantee room rates.) INFO: Jerry Weikel firstname.lastname@example.org , (775) 747 1405, or website: www.renochess.org/wso (also go here to verify entry). FIDE .W.
5) Upcoming Events
Howard Donnelly Memorial - September 17
J.J. Dolan Memorial - October 8
Carroll Capps Memorial - November 5-6
Pierre Saint-Amant Memorial - November 19
Guthrie McClain Memorial - December 3
Pine, San Francisco. $$B 160 paid entries (not counting free or unrated entries). Six Sections: Master $1500-750-400-350 U2300 $300; Expert $700-350-200-150. "A" $700-350-200-150. "B" $700-350-200-150. "C" $700-350-200-150. "D/E" $700-$350-$200 U1200 $200-150. Unr:
Trophy First. Trophy to top finisher (State Champion) in each section. All, EF: postmarked
by 8/29 $115. $125 at site. Unrateds $20 in the D/E section or may play up to the Master
section for the regular fee. $5 discount to CalChess members. USCF memb. req'd. May
play up one section for add'l $10. GM/IM free entry. Reg.: Sat 9/3 8:30-9:30am, Sun 9/4
8-9am. RDS.: Choice of schedules- 3-day, 2-day merge at round 4, all compete for the same prizes. 3-day schedule: Sat 10:00-3:30; Sun 11:00-4:45; Mon 10:00-3:30. 2-day schedule: Sun 9:30-11:45-2:00-4:45; Mon 10:00-3:30. 1/2 pt bye(s) any round(s) if requested in advance
(byes rds 5-6 must be requested before rd 1). 2011 September Ratings List, CCA minimums and Directors discretion will be used to place players as accurately as possible. Please bring
clocks and equipment. HR: Golden Gateway Holiday Inn (415)-441-4000. INFO: Richard
Koepcke (650)-224-4938. Ent: Richard Koepcke, P.O. Box 1432, Mountain View, CA 94042. No Phone entries. Master Section FIDE Rated. Chess Magnet School JG
2012 Northern California International Presented by NorCal House of Chess
Dates: January 2nd - January 8th
Location: NorCal House of Chess at Northwestern Polytechnic University
47655 Warm Springs Blvd.
Fremont, CA 94539
Rounds: Jan 2nd: 6:00; Jan 3rd, 5th: 11:00 & 6:00; Jan 4th, 6th, 7th: 4:00; Jan 8th: 11:00
Time Control: 40/90, SD/30 with 30 second increment
Organizers: Arun Sharma <asharma AT math.berkeley.edu> and Ted Castro <ted0712 AT yahoo.com>
Section A (GM-norm Round Robin)
Section B (Swiss)
GM and IM norms possible in both sections!
GMs interested in playing and potentially receiving conditions should contact Arun as soon as possible if they wish to have the best chance of doing so.
The Northern California International begins only a couple of days after the North American Open in Las Vegas ends so is a very convenient event for those who are playing in the latter.
Southern California Events
1st Metropolitan Chess International
GM, IM, WGM, WIM Norm Event!
GM Michael Adams, GM Loek Van Wely, GM Ilya Smirin, GM Timur Gareev, and other GMs committed to the tournament.
Currently has 27 foreign players, 10 grandmasters, and 37 titled players registered/committed.
9-SS, 40/90, SD/30 + 30 second increment from move 1
Sheraton Downtown Los Angeles, 711 South Hope Street, Los Angeles, CA 90017.
$$14,100 Unconditionally Guaranteed prize fund. 1 Section.
Prizes: $5,000-3,000-1,300-900-800-600, BU2500 $1000-500, BU2300 $1,000 Plus Best Game Prizes: Various Apple Products (iPods, iPads, iShuffles, iTouches, etc).
Reg: Must be done in advance. No on-site registration. Contact email@example.com. July official FIDE ratings used.
Rds: 7:30 PM on Wed, 11:00 AM and 5:30 PM on Thur-Fri-Sat, and 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM on Sun.
EF: Based on FIDE rating. Visit www.metrochessla.com for details. Free entry for GMs and Foreign WGMs/IMs, no entry fee deducted from prizes, but you must register in advance.
Ent: Metropolitan Chess, Inc., PO Box 25112, Los Angeles, CA 90025 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. For more info call Ankit Gupta at (650) 823-1681 or visit www.metrochessla.com.
Hotel Rates: Special rate of only $139 single or double, (213) 488-3500 if booked by 7/16/11, book ASAP, as rates will go up and rooms may sell out by mid-July. Great hotel in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles.