Mechanics Institute Chess Room Newsletter #274

   In our day too, there are some authors who assert that the dynamic approach characteristic of modern chess has in effect made general rules and principles useless for the purpose of making decisions in the majority of concrete positions. This point of view has probably arisen at least partly from the realization that, when we are playing the game, we are in fact occupied with concrete analysis of the position, and almost never recall those abstract principles. So why do we need them at all? A thorough acquaintance with the general principles, techniques and methods enriches and sharpens our intuition. In the course of play, our feelings suggest moves, which correspond to the principles (which we examined earlier), which are active in the position; the analysis of these possibilities or those ideas helps us to guess the proper line to take, to find the concrete solution. And the more "learned" the player, other things being equal, the more successfully and surely his intuition will operate.

Mark Dvoretsky

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) US Championships Dates Shifted
3) US Chess League All Stars named
4) No HB Global Challenge 
5) Top Northern California Juniors
6) The games of NM Robert Burns
7) Upcoming Events

1) Mechanics' Institute Club News

Ted Belanoff bounced back from a first round loss to Albert Starr to win the annual Jim Hurt Memorial Amateur Championship held December 10th and 11th by winning his last five games. Tying for second 4.5 were Carl Woebke and Charles Ling followed by Ewelina Krubnik, Tad Salvo and Marika Litras with 4. Anthony Corrales and John Donaldson directed the 25-player event for the Mechanics'.

Book and equipment donations to the Mechanics' are always welcome. All donations to the Mechanics' 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.

2) US Championships Dates Shifted


"Oh, Mexico. It sounds so simple I just got to go..." waxed lyrically James Taylor on his hit song, Mexico. And much the same can be said for many of the world's top players, after discovering that a new major event is set to take place there.

The Morelia International Chess Festival ( takes place 16 th -28 th February. This gala event, that includes many cultural chess activities, also takes in the first half of the famed Linares tournament.

With the technical support of legendary New York Open organizer Jose Cuchi, the International Open, with a first prize of $50,000, is going to attract over 100 grandmasters - and being so close to the U.S., many of those will be American grandmasters.

The only snafu, though, is that the dates for the Morelia Chess Festival clashed with the start dates for the U.S. Championship! Rather than see the players miss out on a big payday, U.S. Championship sponsor, Erik Anderson, in consultation with Mr. Cuchi, agreed it would indeed be unfair - so they immediately agreed on a compromise solution that allows for players to play both Mexico and San Diego with very little inconvenience to the U.S. Championship!

Whilst keeping to our original dates, there has been a slight schedule change to allow for this. The new date for the U.S. Championship opening ceremony will now be Wednesday, 1 March with the first round of play to be Thursday, 2 March. To accommodate this, the AF4C has removed the original rest-day school visits that were originally planned for Wednesday, 8 March.

Instead, players not going to Mexico will be asked to do school visits on the morning of the opening ceremony on Wednesday, 1 March, and those attending Mexico will be asked to stay behind after the US Championship to fulfill their obligation of doing school visits on Monday, 13 March. This easy fix allows players to play both Mexico and San Diego!

A full schedule update reflecting these changes will soon be published on the U.S. Championship website.

In addition to the championship games, there will be other exciting events related to chess as part of Chess Fest 2006. For more information about the U.S. Chess Championships or the events surrounding the 2006 games, please visit America's Foundation for Chess

Founded on the hope of making chess a subject taught in every school in the United States, AF4C, a nonprofit organization, is committed to making chess a larger part of America's cultural fabric - accessible in schools and in popular culture. AF4C hopes to elevate the profile of chess in America so that it will soon become a regular part of every child's classroom experience.

About NTC Foundation
The NTC Foundation, a 501[c][3] nonprofit organization, is responsible for the renovation of the 26 historic buildings on 28 acres at the former San Diego Naval Training Center in Point Loma into a new arts, civic and cultural district called NTC Promenade. NTC Promenade will be the permanent home for the U.S. Chess Championship.

John Henderson, Championship Coordinator & Press Relations, 206-229-9233,

All rounds begin at 1pm and are open to the public

Wed, March 1 · Chess in the classroom school visits (9am-1pm)
· Opening Reception - not open to public (5:30-7:30pm)
· Players' Meeting (8-9pm) at NTC Promenade Thu, March 2 Round 1
Fri, March 3 Round 2
Sat, March 4 Round 3
Sun, March 5 Chess Fest & Kids' Simul at NTC Promenade (10am-4pm)
Mon, March 6 Round 4
Tue, March 7 Round 5
Wed, March 8 Round 6
Thu, March 9 Round 7
Fri, March 10 Round 8
Sat, March 11 Round 9
Sun, March 12 Championship Match
Awards and closing ceremony (5-7pm)
Mon, March 13 Chess in the classroom school visits (9am-1pm)

3) US Chess League All Stars named

USCL All League Teams:

Team 1:

Board 1 - IM Pascal Charbonneau - 2506 (Baltimore)
Board 2 - IM Lev Milman - 2474 (Carolina)
Board 3 - FM Gregory Braylovsky - 2376 (New York)
Board 4 - NM Elvin Wilson - 2239 (Philadelphia)

Team 1 Average Rating - 2399


Team 2:

Board 1 - GM Julio Becerra - 2622 (Miami)
Board 2 - FM Tegshsuren Enkhbat - 2453 (Baltimore)
Board 3 - FM David Pruess - 2432 (San Francisco)
Board 4 - WGM Katerina Rohonyan - 2309 (Baltimore)

Team 2 Average Rating - 2454

For more information go to.

4) No HB Global Challenge

Tom Ewers sends this in as coming from a Minnesota chess discussion group. Apparently the HB Foundation, which sponsored the huge HB Challenge tournament in May this year, is kaput. That event didn't get the number of players it needed to be considered a financial success, at least not according to the pre-event comments of the organizers. Their website is now offline.

Unfortunately, the HB foundation went completely out of business as of Nov 30. Their 2 million dollar endowment now has nothing in it. There are a group of concerned folks doing a letter writing campaign to get it started again...let me know if you are interested in helping.

Brian Ribnick -- HB Foundation Advisory Board Member

5) Top Northern California Juniors

NM Michael Aigner writes.

Dear John,

I just updated the CalChess website using the USCF Top 100 lists for December. You can check out the lists at the following link:

Moreover, I compiled CalChess Top 20 lists for Elementary and JHS/HS. You can find these below. I'm sending this for your use in the MI newsletter.

CalChess Top 20 Elementary

(1) resident of northern California
(2) appears on USCF Top 100 lists for ages 7/under, 8, 9, 10 or 11

1. Daniel Naroditsky, 9, 1880
2. Gregory Young, 10, 1848
3. Mukund Chillakanti, 11, 1628
4. Hugo Kitano, 10, 1622
5. Partha Vora, 11, 1616
6. Arthur Liou, 11, 1580
7. Nicholas Nip, 7, 1578
8. Harsha Nukala, 10, 1496
9. Kartik Chillakanti, 11, 1471
10. Rahul Desirazu, 10, 1447
11. Andrew Yeh, 9, 1438
12. Christopher Wu, 10, 1401
13. Jerry Chen, 10, 1389
14. Jerome Sun, 8, 1373
15. Kevin Garbe, 10, 1365
16. Ojas Chinchwadkar, 10, 1362
17. Hemang Jangle, 8, 1355
18. Alex Grossman, 9, 1351
19. Tau Jeng, 10, 1342
20. Andrew Li, 9, 1315
20. Jennifer Livschitz, 9, 1315


CalChess Top 20 Junior High and High School

(1) resident of northern California
(2) appears on USCF Top 100 lists for ages 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, or 17

1. NM Matthew Ho, 17, 2282
2. NM Nicolas Yap, 16, 2263
3. Drake Wang, 16, 2181
4. Daniel Schwarz 16, 2157
5. Alexander Setzepfandt, 15, 2144
6. Ankit Gupta, 17, 2092
7. Sam Shankland, 14, 2012
8. David Chock, 15, 2009
9. Ricky Yu, 17, 1970
10. Matt Zavortink, 15, 1945
11. Wesley Chen, 17, 1944
12. Louiza Livschitz, 14, 1936
13. Daichi Siegrist, 15, 1893
14. Tyler Wilken, 15, 1889
15. Ramon Qiu, 15, 1879
16. Varun Behl, 17, 1872
17. Jeff Young, 14, 1871
18. Michael Zhong, 14, 1864
19. Jared Wood, 17, 1829
20. Rohan Sathe, 15, 1827

6) The games of NM Robert Burns

Max Burkett sent in a more complete selection of games of Robertt Burns than are available on Mega2005. Here are two that caught our eye.

Burns,R - Keske,A [C19]
op Golden Knights cr USA, 1969

1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 Bb4 4.e5 c5 5.a3 Bxc3+ 6.bxc3 Ne7 7.a4 Nbc6 8.Nf3 Qa5 9.Bd2 Bd7 10.Be2 c4 11.Ng5 h6 12.Nh3 0-0-0 13.0-0 f5 14.f4 Kb8 15.Qe1 Nc8 16.Bc1 Nb6 17.Ba3 Nxa4 18.Bd6+ Ka8 19.Ra3 Rdg8 20.Qa1 b5 21.Rb1 a6 22.Nf2 Nd8 23.Qb2! Qxc3 24.Qxc3 Nxc3 25.Rxc3 Kb7 26.Nd3 cxd3 27.Rc7+ Kb6 28.Bxd3 Bc6 29.Re7 Bb7 30.Bc7+ Ka7 31.Bxb5 1-0

Burns,R - Poschel,P (2260) [B90]
Cleveland, 1974

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Be3 e5 7.Nb3 Be6 8.Qd2 Nbd7 9.f3 b5 10.0-0-0 Qc7 11.Kb1 Be7 12.g4 Nb6 13.g5 Nh5 14.Nd5 Nxd5 15.exd5 Bd7 16.Bd3 0-0 17.Rhg1 g6 18.Rde1 Rfe8 19.f4 Nxf4 20.Bxf4 exf4 21.Qxf4 Bf8 22.Ref1 Re7 23.h4 Bg7 24.h5 Qb6 25.Qh4 Rf8 26.Rh1 Be5 27.Rf6 Bxf6 28.gxf6 Re5 29.hxg6 h5 30.Qg3 Bg4 31.Qxg4! hxg4 32.g7 Re1+ 33.Rxe1 Qf2 34.Bh7+ Kxh7 35.Rh1+ Kg6 36.gxf8Q 1-0

7) Upcoming Events

Mechanics' Institute

Bob Burger - January 7
Henry Gross - February 4
A.J. Fink Amateur - March 4 and 5



St. George Chess Club North American Warm-up 5SS, G/60
Location: St George Chess Center, 354 E. 600 S. #301, St George, Utah 84770.

Date: December 18, 2005
Entry Fee: $35
GMs and IMs free entry. $100 appearance reward for IMs and GMs.
Free Room and Board for Titled Players.

Prize fund: $1200 absolutely guaranteed.
Registration: Friday 17th, 6:30- 7:30, Saturday 18th 8:00 to 8:45 am.

Rounds: 1st round 9:00 am. Next rounds ASAP.
Byes must be submitted before the 2nd round for a half a point.
Award Ceremony: there will be an Awards Ceremony immediately after the last round.
All cash prizes are unconditionally guaranteed.

What to bring: chess clocks and a pen.
You can also register and have questions answered at 435-656-2117

Return to Index