Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter #23

Lack of patience is probably the most common reason for losing a game, or
drawing a game that should have been won.

GM Bent Larsen

1) Vinay Bhat Wins Falconer Award

International Master Vinay Bhat is the winner of the 2001 Falconer Award. The
San Jose high school honor student was the top rated player in Northern
California under 18 on the December 2000 USCF rating list at 2477. Vinay's
prize, made possible by the generosity of longtime Mechanics' Institute
Trustee Neil Falconer, is $2477. Bhat is the youngest IM in the country at 16
and will represent the United States in the upcoming match with China this
March in Seattle.

2) Charles Linklater Memorial (February 26-March 8)

The Charles Linklater Memorial, a Category 8 (2426 FIDE) GM round robin,
honoring the memory of the great Chess Room benefactor, will be held at the
Mechanics' Institute beginning February 26. Rounds will be held starting at
10 AM daily and spectators are welcome. Starting on Tuesday, February 27, MI
Grandmaster-in-Residence Alex Yermolinsky and IM John Donaldson will be
giving daily lectures from noon to 1pm in the Member's Lounge next to the MI
Cafe. If you work downtown please come over. You can brownbag it or pick up
lunch at the Cafe.

The 11-player round robin will feature three strong foreign Grandmasters and
eight norm aspirants. Samford scholarship winner Gregory Shahade just made
his first GM norm in Bermuda. Southern California star Cyrus Lakdawala made
his first IM norm in the Koltanowski Memorial last December at the MI, will
he be able to repeat? IM Mladen Vucic of Novato, who tied for second in the
Koltanowski, is playing in Europe now and should be in excellent form for the
Linklater. US Women's Champion Camilla Baginskaite narrowly missed a Women's
Grandmaster norm in Istanbul and has been preparing hard for this event. Two
of the top players on the Peninsula, Aaron Stearns of Menlo Park and
Alexander Kretchetov of San Jose, will be playing in their first round robin
tournament at the Mechanics'.

Participants and FIDE ratings:

GM Baburin 2598 Ireland
GM Wojtkiewicz 2572 Poland
GM Shulman 2543 Belarus
IM Shahade 2456 USA
FM Altounin 2441 USA
FM Lakdawala 2436 USA
FM Mulyar 2428 USA
IM Vucic 2364 USA
WIM Baginskaite 2306 USA
FM Kretchetov 2300 Russia
NM Stearns 2246 USA

GM norm = 7 points, IM norm = 5.5, WGM = 5

3) Pruess defeats Steel

NM David Pruess defeated Expert David Steel 4-0 in a match held February 7th
and 8th.

4) Petrosian at the Mechanics' Institute April 16, 1978

Former World Champion Tigran Petrosian visited San Francisco with his wife,
Rona, as honored guests of famous chess writer Irving Chernev and past editor
of the California Chess Reporter, Guthrie McClain, following the prestigious
Louis D. Staham tournament in Lone Pine on April 16.

During his brief stay Petrosian faced 22 opponents in a simultaneous
exhibition at the Mechanics' Institute Chess Club, winning 16 games, losing
two (to Neil Falconer and Leon Miller) and drawing four with Gary Berry,
Michael Gonsalves, Roger Hoffman and Edward Syrett.

Chess Voice 1978 (page 56)

5) Henry Gross Memorial

The Henry Gross Memorial, a five-round one day action (g/45) tournament, will
be held on February 24 starting at 10 am. For more information contact John
Donaldson at or call (415) 421-2258.

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