Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter #143

"Chess is really 99 percent calculation"


1) Ehlvest wins CCA International in Vermont
2) Keatinge-Clay tops Stamer
3) Tatum takes Ladow Memorial Blitz
4) 5-Way tie for first in Summer Tuesday Night Marathon
5) MI Chess Camps
6) Upcoming Events

1) Ehlvest wins CCA International in Vermont

Former Candidate Jaan Ehlvest of Estonia won the Continental Chess Association International held at the Stratton Mountain Inn near Manchester, Vermont from June 4-8. Ehlvest, who is currently enrolled at the University of Baltimore at Maryland County, scored an undefeated 7 1/2 from 10 to take home the $4,000 first prize. Tying for second in the 30-player event, which included seven GMs and nine IMs, were GMs Peter Kiriakov and Alex Wojtkiewicz and IMs Varuzhan Akobian and John Donaldson. Kiriakov and Wojtkiewicz were both undefeated and among the leaders throughout the event. Akobian started slowly, which prevented him form playing the necessary foreigners required for GM norm possibilities, but had the satisfaction of avenging his last round US Championship defeat to Alex Shabalov. Donaldson turned in a 2630 FIDE performance, defeating GM Blatny and IMs Firman and Andrianov, drawing with GMs Kiriakov and Ivanov, as well as IMs Akobian and Perelshetyn. His only loss was in round two to Ehlvest. This result was good for his second Grandmaster norm. He needs one more result to qualify for the title.

Making IM norms were Emory Tate and Robby Adamson. Tate had a particularly eventful tournament scoring 3 out of 4 against two GMs and two IMs the first four rounds of the event, then managing only one point from his next five games before rallying to win his final game and make a norm.

Continental Chess Association founder Bill Goichberg is best known for his high profile events like the World, Chicago, and North American Opens, but he has also run many smaller events the past 35+ years to help promote chess all over America and provide opportunities for US players to earn International titles. It's hard to imagine where American chess would be without him.

Final standings: 1. GM Jaan Ehlvest 7.5/10; 2-5. GMs Peter Kiriakov and Alex Wojtkiewicz, IMs Varuzhan Akobian and John Donaldson 7; 6. GM Idar Ibragimov 6.5; 7-10. GM Alexander Shabalov, GM Alexander Ivanov and IM Ron Burnett 6; 11-16. IM Nikolay Andrianov, IM Eugene Perelshteyn, GM Pavel Blatny, FM Rodion Rubenchik and FM John Bick 5.5

For more information and a selection of games go to: CCA INTERNATIONAL

The following game, played in round 8, was a key one for me. My opponent, who is one of the top young players in the Ukraine with a FIDE rating of 2505, will undoubtedly become a strong GM soon, but he was not having a good tournament in Vermont. I was able to put him under strong pressure very quickly and won a miniature .

Donaldson - Firman
Leningrad Dutch A87
Vermont International (8) 2003

1.Nf3 f5 2.g3 Nf6 3.Bg2 g6 4.00 Bg7 5.d4 00 6.c4 d6 7.Nc3 Qe8

This variation of the Leningrad has replaced 7...c6 and 7...Nc6 as the main line in this opening. It offers Black good chances to play for a win, albeit with some strategic risk.

8.d5 Na6 9.Rb1 c6

More solid is 9...Bd7 10.b4 c6 11.dxc6 Bxc6. Donaldson-Onischuk, Lindsborg 2002, saw White try the novelty 12.c5!? which led to a sharp but short draw: 12... Ne4 13.Qb3+Qf714.Nxe4 Bxe4 15.cxd6 Bxb1 16.dxe7 Qxb3 17.exf8Q+ Rxf8 18.axb3 Be4 19.Be3 b6 20.Rd1 Nxb4 21.Rd7 Nc2 22.Bf4

10.dxc6 bxc6 11.b4 Bd7 12.a3 h6!?

The move, envisoning ...g5 and action on the kingside is a popular plan in the Leningrad, but 12...Nc7, planning to redeploy the Knight to e6, to support ...f4, looks more reliable. For example 12...Nc713.Bb2 Rb8 14.Ba1 Ne6 15.e3 a5 16.Na4 axb4 17.axb4 with only a slight advantage for White.

13.Bb2 g5 14.c5!

14.e3 Nc7 15.Qe2 e5 16.Rfd1 e4 17.Nd4 Rd8 18.b5 c5 19.Nb3 f4 led to a Black win in Hebden-Firman, Lausanne 2000. The text is much more to the point. White opens the a2-g8 diagonal and prepares to blockade on the central dark-squares.


This move is a positional mistake as Black will never be allowed to play ...e5.

Black has two more critical tries:

(a) 14...dxc5 15.Ne5 Rd8 16.Nxd7 Qxd7 17.Qa4 cxb4 18.Qxa6 bxc3 19.Bxc3 Qe6 20.Rb7 gave White compensation for the pawn in Cvitan-Borge, Manilla (ol) 1992, but I see nothing wrong with 16.Qa4 Nc7 17.Nxc6 following by b5 with a big advantage.;

(B) 14...g4 (risky but perhaps justifying the plan of ...h6 and ...g5) 15.Nd4 dxc5 (15...e5? is met by 16.Ndb5! cxb5 17.Qxd6!) 16.Qb3+ Kh8 17.Ne6 Bxe6 18.Qxe6 cxb4 19.axb4 Nxb4 with Black having a pawn for his troubles.


Now White has a big advantage.

15...Be6 16.Qa4 Nb8

Unfortunately there is no other way to protect the Knight and guard c6.


Striking at the base of Black's pawn chain, White weakens Black's control of d5.


On 17...Ne4 White has 18.Nxe4 cxb5 19.Qb3 fxe4 20.Bxe4 with much the better chances.

18.Qxb5 Nbd7??

The final mistake. Black had to play 18...Ne4 though 19.Qxe8 Rxe8 20.Nxe4 fxe4 21.f3 exf3 22.Nxf3 Nc6 23.Bxg7 Kxg7 24.e3 with Nd4 to follow gives White a nice advantage.

19.Qc6 10

Resignation was not premature as d5 was falling leaving Black with a terrible position as well as a material deficit.

2) Keatinge-Clay tops Stamer

FM Adrian Keatinge-Clay won the 39th annual Arthur Stamer Memorial held June 6-8 at the MI. Keatinge-Clay's score of 4 1/2 from 5 put him a half point ahead of IM Ricardo DeGuzman. Tying for second at 4 were IM Ricardo DeGuzman, NM Roger Poehlman, and Experts Anthony Rozenvasser and Dana Mackenzie. A total of 47 players participated in the event held June 6-8. Anthony Corrales and Alex Yermolinsky directed for the Mechanics'.

3) Tatum takes Ladow Memorial Blitz

Up-and-coming Junior Kofi Tatum finished ahead of several Masters to win the Louie Ladow Memorial Blitz Tournament held June 1st at the Mechanics' Institute. Tatum scored 8 1/2 from 10 in the five double-round Swiss System event, a half point ahead of NM Oleg Shakhnazarov. Other top scorers were:
3. Anthony Rozenvasser 7 1/2; 4-7. Richard Koepcke, Joe Tracy, Igor Traub and Martin Marshall 7; 8. Ewelina Krubnik 6. Steve Brandwein directed the event which was sponsored by Martin Marshall.

4) Tuesday Night Marathon

Three rounds into the TNM, there are five remaining perfect scores in the 77-player field: NM David Blohm and Experts Anthony Rozenvasser, Ben Haun, Nicolas Yap, and Anthony Gross. It's still possible to enter the eight round event with half point byes for the first three rounds.

5) MI Chess Camps

The MI is hosting camps for beginners (June 16-20) and intermediate (July 14-18) players this summer. All ages are welcome. For more information go to .

6) Upcoming Events

Upcoming Tournaments at the MI

Full details at

William Addison: June 28
Charles Bagby: July 19
Vladimir Pafnutieff: August 23

Scholastic Quads: May 31 (THIS SATURDAY)

2003 Chess Camp for Intermediate Players
2003 Chess Camp for Beginners

West Coast National Events

Championship Qualifier A Heritage Event!
An American Classic Event!
June 13-15: 2003 National Open WGPP: 200Q Nevada 6SS, 40/2, SD/1 (scholastic and unrated sections 12-RDSS G/90). Riviera Hotel and Casino, 2901 Las Vegas Boulevard South, Las Vegas, NV 89109. $53,000 Prize Fund is Fully Guaranteed and will not be reduced. Championship. $$G: $5000-2500- 1200-600-300-150-150-150-150-150, U2500 $1100, U2400 $1000, U2300 $900. The winner of the Championship section receives a replica of the Edmondson Cup. 5 points wins at least $500, 4-1/2 wins at least $200. Under 2200: $$G: $2500-1200-600-300-150-75-75-75-75-75, U2100 $900. Under 2000: $$G: $2500-1200-600-300-150-75-75-75-75-75, U1900 $900. Under 1800: $$G: $2500-1200-600-300-150-75-75-75-75-75, U1700 $900. Under 1600: $$G: $2500-1200-600-300-150-75-75-75-75-75, U1500 $900. Under 1400: $$G: $1500-700-350-200-100-50-50-50-50-50, U1300 $600. Under 1200: $$G: $1000-500-250-150-100-50-50-50-50-50, U1100 $400, U1000 $200. Unrated: Open to players with no published USCF (or convertible international) rating. $500-250-125-75-50. Unrated prizes are USCF Gift Certificates. Scholastic Under 1200: Open to players in grades K-12 rated under 1200. Trophies to top 10 and top 5 in each 100 point rating group. All Sections: 5 points in any section (10 in unrated) wins at least 10% of first prize. Plus score bonus ($$G 8000) in addition to any other prizes: every player who finishes with 3-1/2 points (6-1/2 in unrated or scholastic section) or better wins a $25 USCF gift certificate. Plus score certificates will be given on site only. EF: (except scholastic and unrated) $95 by 5/26, $125 by 6/11, $150 on site. $30 off advance entry fee only for Juniors under 20 or Seniors over 65. Scholastic EF: $49 by 5/26, $69 by 6/11, $85 on site. Unrated EF: $65 by 5/26, $80 by 6/11, $100 on site. This is an open tournament - you may play in any section at or above your rating level, unrated players may play only in Championship, Unrated or Scholastic section (if age eligible). CCA minimum ratings may be used if higher than USCF June Supplement. Reg: 6-8 pm. Thursday June 12, 9-10:30 a.m. Friday June 13. Rds: 12-7, 10-5, 10-5. Late schedule: rounds 1 and 2, G/60, at 7 and 9:30 Friday. Add $1 to EF for this option. Not available in scholastic and unrated sections. Half point byes available in any round, but 5th or 6th round 1/2 point byes must be requested before the start of round 2. Add 50 cents to advance EF for 1st round 1/2 point bye only. Chess sets and boards provided for tournament play only; not for skittles. Please bring chess clocks! Many free extras and surprises! Free parking. Free airport shuttle for players only. Blitz tournament Thursday evening, June 12th, 80% of EF returned as prizes. Chess Camp Thursday June 12th. Free raffle with great prizes. Free lectures by GM Ron Henley. Free analysis of your games. Come early for Grandmaster SIMULS Thursday at 3:30 p.m. New LOW room rates! HR: $69 single or double includes free tickets to one of three Mardi Gras Riviera Las Vegas Shows Wednesday or Thursday. 1-800-634-6753 or (702) 734-5110. Don't be shut out; make your reservations early and be sure to ask for the chess rates; the Riviera sells out most weekends. Cutoff for special hotel rate is May 26th. Special $69 rates after cutoff only if rooms available! Credit card or one night room deposit will be required to hold reservation, refundable if reservation canceled 72 hours in advance. For travel discounts check our website or contact Classic Travel at Email: or (630) 980-7900. Tournament Registration: U.S. Chess Federation, 3054 RTE 9W, New Windsor, NY 12553, Attention: National Open Entries. Credit card entries accepted 8am-9pm Eastern at 1-800-388-KING Info: Alan Losoff (847) 858-7778, evenings central time, Email:, or Web: W. FIDE.


LAX Radisson 6225 W. Century Blvd. · Los Angeles, CA 90045 · (310) 670-9000 $89 Chess Rate - Lowest in years!

A USCF National Championship

A Heritage Event!

Tournament Format
A one-section tournament with class prizes.
12 Round Swiss System. Several Schedules Available!
Traditional Schedule: One round daily at 7:30 pm 8/43-8/8 & 8/10-8/15.
Matinee 1st half: One round daily at 11 am 8/3-8/8, then 7:30 pm 8/10-8/15. Merges with Traditional after Round 6; 8-day option: All games 40/2, SD/1. Rounds 8/8-8/11 at 11 am and 7:30 pm, 8/12-15 at 7:30 pm. 6-day option: Rounds 1-7 are G/60. Rounds 8/10 12:30-3-6-9, 8/11 10:30-1:30-4, 7:30, 8/12-8/15 7:30 pm. 8-day and 6-day both merge with others after Round 7. Busy person special: Play only rds 7-12 at 7:30 pm 8/10-15. Over 2399 starts with 4 pts, 2200-2399 3.5, Expert 3, Class A 2.5, Class B 2, Class C 1.5, Class D 1, Under 1200 0.5, Unrated 0.5. Time Control 40/2, SD/1 except 1st 7 rounds of 6-day schedule are G/60. The August rating list will be used. 1/2 point byes are available. Maximum 2 byes available rds. 1-10. Half-point byes available in round 1, and in any round if player would have been rated above opponent. Bye counts zero if player would have been rated below opponent. Round 2-9 byes must be requested at least 3 hours before round; round 10 byes must be requested before round 9 and are irrevocable. No byes last 2 rounds. Players may not receive more bye points during the first 6 rounds than the busy player score for their class.

$55,000 unconditionally guaranteed - second largest ever prize fund ever at a U.S. Open. Top places: $8000-4000-3000-2000-1500-1200-1000-800-600-400.
Qualifier for the 2004 U.S. Invitational Championship.
2449-2300: $2000-1000. 2299-2200: $2000-1000.
Expert: $2000-1000-600-500-300.
Class A: $2000-1000-600-500-300.
Class B: $2000-1000-600-500-300.
Class C: $2000-1000-500-400-300.
Class D: $1500-1000-500-400-300.
Class E: $1000-500-400.
Under 1000: $1000-400.
Unrated: $1000-400.
Unrateds are ineligible for Expert through Under 1000 prizes.
Elegant trophy for each class winner.
Biggest upset by non-prizewinner: $100.
Best games: $200-100-100 (one reserved for non-master).


If mailed by 7/26 or paid by phone, fax or online with credit card by 7/30.
$190 Traditional
$189 Matinee 1st half
$187 8-day
$186 6-day
$185 Busy Player
On site $220.
Registration closes 2 hours before 1st round in each schedule.
USCF Membership is required and must be current. You may pay USCF membership with your entry or on site. Regular Adult Memberhip, $49/year includes CHESS LIFE (12 issues) Senior Membership Age 65 & over, $36/year includes CHESS LIFE (12 issues) Youth Membership Age 19 and under, $25/year includes CHESS LIFE (12 issues) Scholastic Membership Age 14 and under, $19/year, includes CHESS LIFE (5 issues + Yearbook) Other membership categories available. Advance entries must include player's name and all fees to be accepted. Mail Entries to
U.S. Open Championship
U.S. Chess Federation
3054 RTE 9W
New Windsor, NY 12553.
Make Checks payable to USCF.
To enter by phone call (800) 388-KING.
Secure On Line Registration will be available soon.
All entries received will be posted here.
Advance registration is strongly encouraged.

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