Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter #127

"If your opponent cannot do anything active, then don't rush the position; instead you should let him sit there, suffer, and beg you for a draw."
   Jeremy Silman

1) Aeroflot Open
2) People's Open
3) MI Winter Tuesday Night Marathon
4) MI Chess History CD: Volume 1
5) Upcoming Events 

1) Aeroflot Open

Belorussian GMs Alexei Aleksandrov and Alexei Federov tied with Viorel Bologan of Moldova and Peter Svidler of Russia for first in the 2nd Aeroflot Open. The four winners tied at 7-2 with Bologan apparently winning the event on tiebreak. Gregory Kaidanov, who finished first last year, was once again among the leaders throughout, but lost with Black in the last round to Svidler to end up with six points. US Champion Alex Shabalov had 4 1/2.

David Gliksman and James Thinssen, who both grew up in Southern California, finished with 4 1/2 and 4 points from 9. in the B group.

Z Efimenko - G Kaidanov
Aeroflot Open 'A', (5)
Open Lopez
1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nc6 3 Bb5 a6 4 Ba4 Nf6 5 0-0 Nxe4 6 d4 b5 7 Bb3 d5 8 dxe5 Be6 9 Be3 Be7 10 c3 0-0 11 Re1 Na5 12 Bc2 Nc4 13 Bc1 Bc5 14 Nd4 Nxf2 15 Kxf2 Qh4+ 16 Kg1 Bg4 17 Re2 Bxe2 18 Qxe2 Bxd4+ 19 cxd4 Qxd4+ 20 Qf2 Qxf2+ 21 Kxf2 Nxe5 22 Bf4 Rfe8 23 Nc3 Rad8 24 h3 d4 25 Ne4 Ng6 26 Bg5 Rd5 27 h4 d3 28 Bb3 Rf5+ 29 Ke3 Rfe5 30 Kxd3 Rxe4 31 Rf1 Nh8 32 Bd5 Re1 33 Rxe1 Rxe1 34 b4 Ng6 35 Kd4 h6 36 Bd2 Rd1 37 Kc3 Nxh4 38 Bb7 Nf5 39 Bxa6 Nd6 40 Kd4 0-1

A Aleksandrov - A Lugovoi
Aeroflot Open 'A', (6)
Nimzo-Indian Defence
1 d4 Nf6 2 c4 e6 3 Nc3 Bb4 4 e3 0-0 5 Bd3 d5 6 cxd5 exd5 7 Nge2 c6 8 0-0 Re8 9 f3 c5 10 a3 Bxc3 11 bxc3 Nc6 12 Ra2 Qc7 13 Ng3 Be6 14 Bb1 Rac8 15 Raf2 Qd7 16 Qd3 h6 17 Rd1 Rc7 18 Bb2 Na5 19 e4 dxe4 20 fxe4 Bc4 21 Qf3 Ng4 22 Rfd2 Bb3 23 Nf5 Bxd1 24 Rxd1 h5 25 h3 Nf6 26 e5 Nh7 27 Nd6 Rf8 28 d5 b5 29 c4 Nxc4 30 Nxc4 bxc4 31 e6 fxe6 32 Bxh7+ Kxh7 33 Qxf8 exd5 34 Be5 Rc8 35 Rxd5 1-0

A Fedorov - M Sorokin
Aeroflot Open 'A', (8)
Petroff's Defence
1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 Nf6 3 Nxe5 d6 4 Nf3 Nxe4 5 d4 d5 6 Bd3 Nc6 7 0-0 Be7 8 c4 Nb4 9 Be2 0-0 10 Nc3 Be6 11 Ne5 f6 12 Nf3 Kh8 13 a3 Nxc3 14 bxc3 Nc6 15 Nd2 Na5 16 cxd5 Qxd5 17 Re1 Rfe8 18 Bb2 Qc6 19 Bd3 Bf7 20 Qc2 h6 21 c4 Bf8 22 d5 Rxe1+ 23 Rxe1 Qd7 24 Bf5 Qd6 25 Bg6 Bg8 26 Qc3 b6 27 Ne4 Qd8 28 Re3 Nb7 29 Rh3 Bh7 30 Bxh7 Kxh7 31 Qd3 Kg8 32 Rxh6 gxh6 33 Nxf6+ Kf7 34 Qf5 Nc5 35 Ne4+ Ke8 36 Qg6+ Kd7 37 Nxc5+ Kc8 38 Qc6 1-0

2) People's Open

IMs Ricardo DeGuzman and John Donaldson tied for first in the Open section of 30th People's Open held February 15-17 on the UC Berkeley campus. The two winners, who drew in round three, scored 5 from 6, to take home $425 apiece. Teenager Monty Peckham of Oakland was clear third at 4 1/2 and should go over 2200 as a result. 13-year-old Alex Setzepfandt, also of Oakland, had an excellent result in tying for fourth at 4-2 with FM Richard Kelson of Clayton.

While overall attendance was excellent with 157 players in the main event and 112 scholastic players, the Open was weaker than normal with only three IMs and 5 other masters in the 22-player section. Don Shennum did an excellent job directing the event and has already posted a list of all prize winners, as well as crosstables from each section, at

People's Open Winners: 1974-2003

1974 Ruben Rodriguez (held in Hayward with 199 players)
1975 Walter Browne (over 100-held in Hayward)
1976 Peter Biyiasas, Walter Browne and John Grefe (Berkeley from 1976 to present - 220 players)
1977 Walter Browne (168)
1978 Larry Christiansen and Nick deFirmian (142)
1979 Eugene Meyer (216)
1980 Paul Cornelius, John Donaldson and Charles Powell (196 players)
1981 James Tarjan (209)
1982 Jeremy Silman and John Grefe (111)
1983 Jeremy Silman (209)
1984 ???
1985 Igor Ivanov and Kamran Shirazi
1986 ???
1987 Cris Ramayrat and Jay Whitehead
1988 Nick deFirmian, Cris Ramayrat, Marc Leski and Dov Gorman (about 180)
1989 Nick deFirmian (213)
1990 Nick deFirmian and Vince McCambridge (close to 200)
1991 John Donaldson, John Grefe, Marc Leski, Larry Remlinger, and Vladimir Strugatsky
(219 with 29 masters)
1992 Walter Browne (193)
1993 Nick deFirmian and Renard Anderson (+200)
1994 ???
1995 John Donaldson (210)
1996 ???
1997 John Donaldson, Robin Forman and Walter Shipman (160)
1998 Tigran Ishkhanov and Vinay Bhat (170)
1999 Vinay Bhat (141)
2000 Camilla Baginskaite (130)
2001 Mauro Casadei (131)
2002 John Donaldson and Dmitry Zilberstein (160)
2003 Ricardo DeGuzman and John Donaldson (157)

Does anyone know who won in 1984, 1986, 1994 and 1996?

3) MI Winter Tuesday Night Marathon

Only one round remains in the Winter Tueday Night Marathon but the battle for first remains very unclear. Four players are presently tie for first at 5 1/2 from 7 (IM Walter Shipman, NMs Russell Wong and Igor Margulis and Burmese Expert Win Aung Lee) and there is a large group half a point behind. Incidentally the 80-player field ties the attendance record for a TNM, equaling the turnout for the MI Winter Marathon of 1973. According to the January-February 1974 issue of the California Chess Reporter that twelve round event was won by NM Peter Cleghorn at 10 1/2 with NM Dennis Waterman second at 10. Three of the players (Peter Grey, Paul Vayssie and Max Wilkerson) who participated in that Marathon are also playing in the current one thirty years later!.

4) MI Chess History CD: Volume 1

The staff of the Mechanics' Institute recently completed the first of a two volume series on the history of the Mechanics' Institute Chess Room. The fruits of their research are available on a CD which includes almost 90 pages of text, approximately 10 photos from the MI archives and over 150 games in ChessBase format. Visits of World Champions Lasker (twice), Capablanca, Alekhine (twice), and Euwe, are among the highlights. The price of the CD is $10 + $1 for shipping. To order, send a check payable to the Mechanics' Institute for $11 to: Mechanics' Institute, Room 408, 57 Post Street, San Francisco, CA, 94104.

5) Upcoming events

Upcoming Tournaments at the MI

Full details at

A.J. Fink Amateur: February 28, March 1-2, 2003
Max Wilkerson Open: March 15, 2003
Walter Lovegrove Senior Championship: April 12-13, 2003
Imre Konig Memorial: April 26, 2003

Scholastic Quad: February 22.

Other Bay Area Events

Feb. 23. San Leandro 2003 Chess Tournament.

Marina Community Center, 15301 Wicks Blvd.,San Leandro. $$1,250, based on 75 entries, in 3 sections. 4SS, G75/G70-5, Rds: 10 am, 1:30 pm, 4:15 pm, 7:00 pm Open: $500, Reserve U2000: $400, Booster U1600 $350 Within each section the prizes will be allocated according to the number of entries and their rating scope, and will be posted after the start of the tournament. EF: $27 if received by 2/21/2003. Late Reg: 9-9:30 am on 2/23 $32.$2 discount to CalChess Members. Ent: Hans Poschmann, 4621 Seneca Park Ave., Fremont CA 94538
E-mail: Tel. 510) 656-8505 ,br> Flyer:

7 th Coastside Scholastic Chess Meet
March 1, 2003, 1:00 -6:00 PM

Farallone View School, Montara CA
Morphy Group: Grades K-5 Steinitz Group: 6-12, Adults.

Beginners welcome, no experience required. Relaxed, stress-free environment .Each player plays 5 games, no elimination. Each player has 20 minutes to complete all moves. Prizes to top 10 and best result in each grade K-6 . Chess sets supplied for all games. Players receive Coastside ratings (not USCF rated) Directions: From South: Take route 92 West until it ends in Half Moon Bay. Turn right (N) on Rt. 1. Proceed about 8 miles to 2nd Street. From North: Take Rt. 1 south to Montara. 2nd street is first turn. To get to Rt. 1, use 280, or Skyline Blvd (rt 35) On 2nd Street, go one block to Main Street, turn right, then immediately turn left on 3rd street. Up two blocks, school is on the left at Le Conte Ave. Please arrive by 1:00 so that we can start the games promptly at 1:30. Games will begin at approximately 1:30, 2:20, 3:15, 4:00 and 4:45, with playoffs, if needed, at 5:30. Organized by Coastside Chess Club (Naomi Hirayasu, President). Directed by International Arbiter Eric Schiller. For more information, contact

To enter, send the following information, together with a check for $15 made payable to Coastside Chess Club, to Coastside Chess, c/o Chessworks, P.O. Box 1048, El Granada CA 94018. Entries must be received by February 27, 2003. Late registration available on site, but the entry fee is $20 if not entered in advance. Please also email the information to, so that we can confirm your entry by email.

Player Name
School Grade
Date of Birth
Parent(s) Name
Phone Number
USCF rating (if any)

Mar. 29-30. 2003 Central California Adult & Scholastic Chess Congress
10 Grand Prix Points

Open, Scholastic & Beginner Scholastic. Edison High School, Grant Taggart Gym, 1425 S. Center St., Stockton. Open: (G/2, 5 sec. delay) $$2,000 Gtd: $400-200, X, A, B, C, D, E, & Unr. $200 ea. Trophies to ea. 1st. EF: $35 by 3/28, at site $45. Late Reg. 8-9:30. Byes requested bef. Rd. 1 only. Rds: 10-2:15, 10-2:15. EF includes G/5 Bughouse, G/5 Blitz, G/10 Quick (Rated), Simultaneous & Blindfold challenge (limited 8 highest rated challengers). Trophy/Title prizes for all side events. Scholastic Championship: 5SS, G/1. 4 Sections: K-3, 4-6, 7-8, 9-12 (Trophies 10, 15, 15, 10 Resp.). EF: $20 by 3/28, at site $30. Late Reg. at site 8-9:30. Byes requested before Rd. 1 only. Rds: 10-1:15, 10-1:15,3:30. EF includes G/5 Bughouse, G/5 Blitz, G/10 Quick (Rated), Simultaneous. Trophy/Title Prize for all side events. Beginner Scholastic Championship: (3/29, Non Rated) 6SS, G/30. K-8. Certificates to all grade winners + participants. Free USCF membership to all scoring 4 or more pts. EF $10, $20 at site. Late Reg. at site 8-9:30. No byes. Only eligible Simultaneous. Rds: 10-11-12-1-2-3. Prizes all side events. Info: or John Charles Barnard, 209-785-7895. 50 cents of ea entry donated to CalChess. Ent: Edison High School Chess Club, 1425 S. Center, Stockton CA 95206 W.

Southern California

April 11-13. Western Pacific Open
40 Grand Prix Points

5SS, 3-day 40/2, SD/1, 2-day Rds. 1-2 G/75 then merges. LAX Radisson Hotel, 6225 W. Century Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90045. $$10,000 b/200, 50% of each prize guaranteed. In 3 sections: Open: $1500-1000-800-400-200 plus $200 (G) bonus for clear 1st, U2400 $400-200, U2300 $200, U2200 $750-500-300. EF: $79 advance, $95 door, $30 more if rated U1800. Premier: (U2000) $750-500-300-100, U1800 $500-300-200. EF: $79 advance, $95 door, $30 more to U1400, no unrated. Amateur: (U1600) $400+trophy-250-100, U1400 $100+trophy-50, U1200 $100+trophy, Unr. $100+trophy, unrated may win unrated prize only. EF: $64 advance, $75 door. Reg: 5:30-6:30pm 4/11, 8:30-10am 4/12. Rds: 3-day 7 p.m., 11-5:30, 10-4:30. 2-day: 10:30-1:30 (G/75), then merges. All: $50 Best Game prize, all sections eligible. One 1/2-pt. bye Rds. 1-3 if requested with ent. SCCF membership req. of rated S. Cal. res., $12 reg, $7.50 Jr. No credit card entries. No checks at door. HR: $84, 310-670-9000, mention chess. Parking: $5/day. Info: Mike Carr, 949-768-3538,; John Hillery Web site: Ent: SCCF, c/o John Hillery, 835 N. Wilton Pl., Los Angeles, CA 90038. State Championship Qualifier. FIDE.

Return to Article Index