Mechanics' Institute Chess Club Newsletter 526

A very important aspect of Carlsen's success is his resilience after defeats. Of course, like any chess player he prefers winning, but if something like that happens then he quickly gets out of that "groggy" state, to use the boxing terminology. That doesn't go so well for me.

Vassily Ivanchuk



1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News

2) 2011 US Championships

3) 2011 USCF Elections

4) Berkeley Chess Club News by Marc Newman

5) Upcoming Events


1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News

International Master Walter Shipman, who turns 82 on April 18th, has clinched at least a tie for first in the 2011 Mechanics' Institute Winter Marathon after defeating top-seed NM Peter Zavadsky last night. Shipman leads with 6.5 from 7 with NM Robin Cunningham and rapidly improving Uyanga Byambaa tied for second with 5.5 points. As Shipman drew Cunningham in round 4 he will face Byambaa in the last round.

Walter Shipman - Romulo Fuentes

Winter Tuesday Night Marathon (5) 2011

Notes by Walter Shipman

1.d4 d5 2.Nc3 Nf6 3.Bg5 c5 4.Bxf6 gxf6 5.e4 dxe4 6.dxc5 Qa5 7.Qd5 Bh6

7...a6 is more usual, but Romulo's new move 7...Bh6 is OK.

8.Bb5+ Kf8 9.Qxe4 a6 10.Bd3 Qxc5 11.Nge2 Nc6 12.0-0 Be6 13.Nf4 Bxf4

Black could have equalized with 13...Bf5! 14.Qxf5 Qxf5 15.Bxf5 Bxf4 and with Bishops of opposite color Black should not lose.

14.Qxf4 Qg5 15.Qxg5 fxg5 16.f4! gxf4 17.Rxf4 Ne5 18.Re1 Nxd3 19.cxd3 Kg7 20.d4 Rhe8 21.Re5! Rad8 22.d5! Bc8 23.Rg5+ Kf8


24.Rh4 e6 25.Rxh7 Ke7 26.Kf2 Rh8 27.Rxh8 Rxh8 28.h3 b5 29.a3 Rh4 30.Rg8 Bd7 31.dxe6 Bxe6 32.Rb8 Rd4 33.Ke3 Rd6 34.Rb7+ Kf8 35.Ne4 Rc6 36.Rb8+ Kg7 37.Rd8 Rc2 38.Rd2 Rc6 39.b4 Rc4 40.Nc5 Bf5 41.Nxa6 Rc3+ 42.Kf4 Be6 43.Nc5 Bc4 44.a4 bxa4 45.Nxa4 Rb3 46.Nc5 Rxb4 47.Rd4 Rb2 48.Rxc4 Rxg2 49.Ne4 Rg1 50.Rc3 Rf1+ 51.Rf3 Ra1 52.Rg3+ Kh6 53.Nf2 Rf1 54.Kf3 Ra1 55.Kg2 Ra2 56.Rf3 Kg6 57.Kg3 f5 58.Nd3 Ra1 59.Nf4+ Kf6 60.h4 Rg1+ 61.Ng2 1-0

Arthur Ismakov took first in the MI Wednesday Night Blitz held on April 9th with Carlos D'Avila and Jules Jelinek sharing second.

Two-time US Womens Champion Jennifer Shahade, whose new book Play Like a Girl! Tactics by 9 Queens, is just out, will be giving a talk and book signing on March 29 at the Mechanics' Institute Chess Club from 5:15 to 6:15 pm. More details soon.

Grandmaster Nick deFirmian will be the lead instructor at the MI Chess Camp for Intermediate and Advanced players scheduled for July 25-29. Find complete details for the camp at under programs for children. The camp is open to all ages.

Bay Area chess players have been very much in the limelight of late. First IM Steven Zierk appeared on the cover of Chess Life for winning the World Youth Under 18 Championship last fall. Then the Mechanics' Institute Tuesday Night Marathon was profiled at at

Finally NM Michael Aigner was profiled by Dylan McClain in the New York Times with the title One Coach, Many Young Champions at .

Congratulations to Bay Area tournament director Tom Langland for recently receiving his FIDE Arbiter title.

2) 2011 US Championships


Two spots remain for 2011 U.S. Championship, Women's field set


All but two spots have been confirmed for the 2011 U.S. Championship, scheduled to be held concurrently with the U.S. Women's Championship in Saint Louis April 13-28,
and two significant surprises have helped shape a dynamic field that will
compete for more than $166,000 in prizes.

Two-time U.S. Champion GM Hikaru Nakamura, currently ranked number one in the U.S. by rating, declined his invitation to play in this year's championship, citing a desire to focus on working toward his ultimate goal of one day winning the World

The other surprise: GM Yasser Seirawan, a four-time U.S. Champion and former World Championship contender, has accepted a wild card invitation. Seirawan, who hasn't played a major tournament since the 2003 "Kings and Queens" match in China, cited two reasons for his interest.

"First, it is a great event, and I wanted to thank the good folks at the Chess Club and
Scholastic Center of Saint Louis for all their wonderful work," he said.
"Secondly, I got bored watching the young lions at play and felt the urge to
join them."

Reigning U.S. Champion Gata Kamsky, who is scheduled to take on Bulgarian GM Veselin Topolav in a World Championship Candidate's Match in May, will defend his crown. Kamksy said he felt the strong field at this year's U.S. Championship would serve as an excellent primer for his match against Topalov the following month.

The second wild card invitation was accepted by the GM-in-residence at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL), Ben Finegold. Ten players will compete for the final two invitations to the 2011 U.S. Championship at the Saint Louis Invitational, a round-robin tournament scheduled to be held at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis March 4-9.

In addition to the two invitations, the players will compete for more than $10,000 in

The 10 players competing for the final two spots are as follows:


  • GM Alejandro
  • GM Gregory
  • GM Joel Benjamin
  • GM Julio Becerra
  • GM Eugene
  • GM Ray Robson
  • GM Melikset
  • GM Jesse Kraai
  • IM Michael
  • FM Darwin

The Saint Louis Invitational will overlap the Bill Wright Saint Louis Open, a strong open tournament that will be held at the CCSCSL March 4-6 and will feature more than $7,300 in prizes.

The field for the 2011 US Championship is as follows:

  • GM Gata Kamsky
  • GM Alex Onischuk
  • GM Varuzhan
  • GM Yasser
  • GM Yury Shulman
  • GM Jaan Ehlvest
  • GM Alex
  • GM Larry
  • GM Robert Hess
  • GM Alex Shabalov
  • GM Alexander
  • GM-elect Sam
  • GM Ben Finegold
  • IM Daniel
  • TBD: Winner of Saint Louis
  • TBD: Runner-up of
    Saint Louis Invitational


IM Irina Krush, who received an automatic invitation to the 2011 U.S. Championship for winning the 2010 U.S. Women's Championship, declined her invitation and instead elected to defend her title at the 2011 US Womens Championship. The field of eight women will be playing for a total prize fund of more than $60,000 and is as follows:


  • IM Irina Krush
  • IM Anna
  • IM Rusadan
  • WGM Camilla
  • WIM Tatev
  • WIM Sabina
  • FM Alisa
  • WIM Iryna


In addition to the intense tournament action offered by these two prestigious events, tournament
organizers will once again host a $10,000 Blitz tournament April 25 that will feature players from both the U.S. Championship and the U.S. Women's Championship.

Access to the tournament is free for annual members of the CCSCSL, or an all-access pass can
be purchased for $100, which includes the following:

  • A ticket to the Opening
    Ceremony and Closing Ceremony ($50 value)
  • Access to all rounds and
    playoffs ($140 value)
  • A year membership
    to the CCSCSL ($80 value)

Individual tickets to the Opening and Closing Ceremonies are available for $25 apiece, and
individual rounds can be accessed for only $10/day, which includes refreshments,
access to live grandmaster commentary and access to the tournament playing

For more information, please visit


3) 2011 USCF Elections

Four candidates have been certified for the USCF executive board election coming up in July.

This is an election for three positions (all for a three-year period) on the USCF Executive Board.

The four candidates (in alphabetical order by last name) are:

Sevan Muradian
Mike Nietman
Allen Priest
Gary Walters

Five petitions were received with four certified by the election committee. The current election requirements are to obtain 50 signatures including 15 delegates from five different states.

Remember that in this election you must be registered to vote. The deadline is March 31. To check your status as a registered voting member, go to To register as a voting member, go to: .

Ballots will go out with the July Chess Life.

4) Berkeley Chess Club News by Marc Newman

The BCC's highest rated tournament in decades is coming to an exciting conclusion this Friday. With one round to go, FM Robin Cunningham, NM Roger Poehlmann, and Expert Todd Rumph are all tied with 4.0. Four others are right behind at 3.5, including Expert Julian Chan.

Talking to some long-time Berkeley Chess Club players, the best guess I could get was that there may have been a few tournaments in the late 80s where two masters might've participated, but the overall ratings did not compare to the current 41-player tournament which is full of experts and high A players. If anyone has any thoughts on this or more specific info on different strength levels at the BCC over the years, we'd love to hear it. The BCC has been meeting near-continuously on Friday nights since the 1960s.

You can see the current crosstable here:

For bookmarking purposes, the main club page is always here:

The next marathon tournament will start March 4th and we'd love to see some new faces.

5) Upcoming Events

MECHANICS' TOURNAMENTS (go to for more information)


2011 Events

A.J. Fink Amateur Championship - March 12-13
Max Wilkerson Open - March 19
Imre Konig Memorial - April 9
Walter Lovegrove Senior Open - April 16-17
Charles Powell Memorial - May 7
Arthur Stamer Memorial - June 4-5
William Addison Open - June 11



Feb. 19-21 or 20-21 2011 37th Annual Peoples Tournament
GPP: 40 Enhanced
California Northern
6SS, 30/90 G/60 (2-day sched rds 1-3 G/60). Marriott, 46100 Landing Pkwy., Fremont, CA 94538. Hotel rate $89. $8,000 b/137 entries (80% guaranteed). 6 sections: Open (2100+) $1000-500-200-100-100. XA (1900-2099), AB (1700-1899), BC (1500-1699), CD (1300-
1499), DE (under 1300): $700-300-100- 100-100 each. The 5th place prize in the 2
largest sections only. Unrated prize limit of $200 except in Open section. EF: $99
3-day & 98 2-day mailed by 2/15, online by 2/16, Onsite +$25, Play-up +$20. 5% off
before 1/18. GMs/IMs free: EF subtr from prize. Re-entry $40. EF Econ Opt: EF
minus $30 & 1/2 of computed prize. Feb 2011 Supp, CCA min & TD discretion used
to place players accurately. TD/Org: Koepcke/Azhar. 3-day sched: Reg. Sat 10-11,
Rds. Sat/Sun 11:30-5:30,
Mon 10-3:30. 2-day sched: Reg Sun 9-9:30, Rds. Sun 10-12:30-2:45-5:30, Mon
10-3:30. Max two 1/2-pt byes & must commit bef rd 3. Ent: Bay Area Chess, 1590
Oakland Rd., Suite B213, San Jose 95131. $20 for refunds. T: 408-786-5515. E:, Info/Form/Entries: NS, NC, W.
Chess Magnet School JGP.
Spring Chess Festival - Saturday, February 25th, 2011
Presented by:
Atlantis Business Insurance Solutions, LLC
NorCal House of Chess
5 Round Swiss
A One Day G/45 USCF rated Event
Location: 45401 Research Avenue, Suite 141, Fremont, CA 94539
Entry Fee: Regular Entry - $60. Economy Entry - $40. 5 discount to members of NorCal House of
Chess. Economy Option pays 50% of calculated prize money. The remaining amount goes back to
the budget to offset Economy Fee Discount.
Time Control: Game in 45.
Regestration & Schedule: Registration: 9:00 am-9:30 am. Rds: 10 am, 12:00 pm, 2:00 pm, 4 pm,
6 pm.
Prizes: $1400 - total, based on 40 fully paid entries. Open Section: $400-$200, U2200: $180,
U2000: $150, U1800: $140, U1600 $130, U1400 $130, U1200 - $100.
Cash Prizes in every round! - $20 cash prize will be awarded in each round to a player scoring a
first win AND to a player scoring the biggest upset. All lower-rated players are eligible to win
higher class prizes.
Questions? - Call TD Felix German at (415) 335-0900 or email:
Mail advance entries to: 14 Sullivan Ave, Daly City, CA 94015. Make checks payable to: Felix