Mechanics Institute Chess Room Newsletter #318

I was wondering why these guys keep calling me up for lessons. Then I realized what I am to themI am their priest. They are going to confession, to confess their chess sins!

Alex Wojtkiewicz

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News
2) Fischer Speaks
3) Local Boys make good
4) Mea Culpa
5) Upcoming Events

1) Mechanics' Institute Chess Club News

Ten players are tied for first after two rounds of the Fall Tuesday Night Marathon. They are NMs Sam Shankland and Igor Margulis, Experts Romulo Fuentes, Victor Ossipov, James Jones and Louiza Livschitz, Class A players George Sanguinetti, Brenden Purcell, and Vadim Smelansky and Class B player Guadalupe Sainz who defeated Expert Igor Traub rated more than 300 points above him.

Here are two more games from the Spassky simul played on September 30th.

Spassky,Boris - Rich,Albert ( 2250) [C34]
San Francisco 2006

1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Nf3 Nc6 4.d4 d5 5.exd5 Qxd5 6.Bxf4 Bg4 7.c3 0-0-0 8.Nbd2 Re8+ 9.Kf2 Nf6 10.Bc4 Ne4+ 11.Nxe4 Qxc4 12.Re1 Rd8 13.Qb3 Na5 14.Qxc4 Nxc4 15.b3 Nd6 16.Nxd6+ Bxd6 17.Bxd6 Rxd6 18.Re3 Re6 19.Rae1 Rxe3 20.Rxe3 Kd8 21.Ne5 Bh5 22.Rh3 Bg6 23.Nxg6 fxg6 24.Rf3 Ke7 25.Ke3 a5 26.c4 Rd8 27.Ke4 b6 28.d5 Re8 29.Kd3 Rc8 30.a3 c6 31.dxc6 Rxc6 32.b4 axb4 33.axb4 Rd6+ 34.Kc3 Re6 35.Rd3 Re2 36.Rd2 Re3+ 37.Kd4 Rb3 38.b5 Rb1 39.Kd5 Kd7 40.Ra2 Rd1+ 41.Ke5 Re1+ 42.Kd4 Rd1+ 43.Kc3 Rc1+ 44.Kd3 Rd1+ 45.Rd2 Rc1 46.Rf2 Ke6 47.Rf8 Rd1+ 48.Kc3 Rc1+ 49.Kb3 Rb1+ 50.Kc2 Rg1 51.g3 Rg2+ 52.Kc3 Rxh2 53.Rb8 Rg2 54.Rxb6+ Kd7 55.Rb7+ Kc8 56.Rxg7 Rxg3+ 57.Kb4 h5 58.c5 Rg1 59.b6 Rb1+ 60.Ka5 h4 61.c6 Ra1+ 62.Kb5 Rb1+ 63.Kc5 Rc1+ 64.Kd5 Rd1+ 65.Ke5 Re1+ 66.Kd4 Rd1+ 67.Ke3 Re1+ 68.Kd2 Re8 69.Ra7 Kb8 70.c7+ Kc8 71.Ra8+ Kd7 72.Rxe8 1-0

Spassky,Boris V - Smelansky,Vadim (1850) [B01]
San Francisco 2006

1.e4 d5 2.exd5 c6 3.dxc6 Nxc6 4.Nc3 e5 5.g3 Bc5 6.Bg2 Nge7 7.Nge2 Bg4 8.h3 Bh5 9.d3 0-0 10.Ne4 Bb6 11.g4 Bg6 12.Bg5 f6 13.Bh4 Nd5 14.Qd2 Rc8 15.c3 Nd4 16.Bg3 Ne6 17.0-0-0 Rf7 18.Kb1 Rd7 19.Ka1 Nc5 20.Nxc5 Rxc5 21.d4 exd4 22.Nxd4 Bf7 23.Nb3 Rc4 24.Rhe1 Ra4 25.Nc1 Bc5 26.Qc2 b5 27.Be4 Qa5 28.b4 Nxb4 29.cxb4 Qxb4 30.Rxd7 Bd4+ 31.Rxd4 Qxd4+ 32.Qb2 Qb6 33.Bc2 Qa5 34.Rd1 1-0

The Mechanics' Chess Club would like to thank Mark Eudey, several time Castle Chess Club Champion and one of the driving forces behind the California Chess Reporter, for his recent donation of chess books.

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) Fischer Speaks

Bobby Fischer recently gave an interview on Icelandic radio. If you go to the ChessBase website at you can find a link. It is interesting to hear Fischer when he talks about chess. Here are the highlights.

"In chess so much depends on opening theory, so the champions before the last century did not know as much as I do and other players do about opening theory. So if you just brought them back from the dead they wouldn't do well. They'd get bad openings. You cannot compare the playing strength, you can only talk about natural ability. Memorization is enormously powerful. Some kid of fourteen today, or even younger, could get an opening advantage against Capablanca, and especially against the players of the previous century, like Morphy and Steinitz. Maybe they would still be able to outplay the young kid of today. Or maybe not, because nowadays when you get the opening advantage not only do you get the opening advantage, you know how to play, they have so many examples of what to do from this position. It is really deadly, and that is why I don't like chess any more."

Morphy and Capablanca had enormous talent, Steinitz was very great too. Alekhine was great, but I am not a big fan of his. Maybe its just my taste. I've studied his games a lot, but I much prefer Capablanca and Morphy. Alekhine had a rather heavy style, Capablanca was much more brilliant and talented, he had a real light touch. Everyone I've spoken to who saw Capablanca play still speak of him with awe. If you showed him any position he would instantly tell you the right move. When I used to go to the Manhattan Chess Club back in the fifties, I met a lot of old-timers there who knew Capablanca, because he used to come around to the Manhattan club in the forties before he died in the early forties. They spoke about Capablanca with awe. I have never seen people speak about any chess player like that, before or since.

Capablanca really was fantastic. But even he had his weaknesses, especially when you play over his games with his notes he would make idiotic statements like I played the rest of the game perfectly. But then you play through the moves and it is not true at all. But the thing that was great about Capablanca was that he really spoke his mind, he said what he believed was true, he said what he felt. He wanted to change the rules [of chess] already, back in the twenties, because he said chess was getting played out. He was right. Now chess is completely dead. It is all just memorization and prearrangement. Its a terrible game now. Very uncreative."

Frank Berry reports that at Youtube ( ) you can find a Fischer documentary on line. Part 1 is the Iceland match. Also you can click on parts 2, 3 and 4. About 35 min in all.

3) Local Boys make good

They have been in New York so long you could hardly guess they hail from the Bay Area, but Steve Immitt and Michael Greengard are definitely two local boys who have made good. Steve, who grew up in San Jose, recently directed his 4,000(!!!) tournament since 1991. Not only is Immitt totally committed to tournament directing tournament he is one of the largest supporter of the USCF's Professional Players' Health and Benefits Fund. Immitt's Chess Center of New York has enhanced all the Grand Prix tournaments it has held since the inception of the program around 1992. This has amounted to one to two tournaments each month, over the last 14-15 years or so, with well over $20,000 raised to help professional players in need, the most recent recipient being 1973 US Co-Champion John Grefe. American chess owes a big thank you to Steve.

Michael Greengard, better known as Mig, who hails from El Sobrante in the upper East Bay, runs the popular Chess Ninja website ( where his The Daily Dirt is required reading for thousands of chess players each day. Mig was the chief of the press center at the past two US Championships and will be doing the same at the FIDE World Championship in Mexico City next year. Completely bilingual, with excellent writing and computer skills, he is just the right guy for the job. Good luck Mig.

4) Mea Culpa

All effort is made to make the Newsletter as accurate as possible but errors do creep in. Here are two corrections:

In Newsletter #313 it stated that IM John Grefe was 4th in the 1974 US Championship. In fact he was =5th-8th according to the crosstable which appeared in Chess Life and Review ( October 1974, page 655). The faulty information came from the crosstable generated by Mega 2006. The reason for the error is because the results of four games are wrong ( Evans beat Karklins rather than lost, Saidy lost to Rogoff rather than beat him, Grefe drew with Rogoff instead of winning, and Bisguier beat rather than lost to Gilden). Correct these four errors and all should be in order. Fortunately all the game scores are correct, it is just the results that are mistaken.

Back in Newsletter #246 in an obituary on GM Vladimir Savon it was written that he scored 87 percent in the 1972 Olympiad. This information was obtained from Golombek's Encyclopedia of Chess (page 288). In fact Savon scored 56 percent. It was Karpov, who played one board above him, who finished with 87 percent.

5) Upcoming Events

Mechanics' Events

Carroll Capps Memorial - November 11 and 12
Saint-Amant Memorial - November 18
Guthrie McClain Memorial - December 2
Jim Hurt Amateur - December 16 and 17

Nov. 25-26 California Classic Thanksgiving Chess Festival GPP: 10 California Northern
4SS, G/45. University of San Francisco-Cupertino, 20085 Stevens Creek Blvd, Cupertino, CA 95014. 3 Sections: Expert, Reserve, Booster. All entry must be received by 11/18/2006. All Prizes Guaranteed. Expert (1800+) Grand Prix section, Prizes: $$670; 1st $320-2nd 150-3rd 50. Top U2100, U2000, U1900-$50 each. Available 1-Day Option. 30/90 G/1, 30/90 G/30. Rds: Sat: 10am-3pm. Sun: 1:45pm-5:45pm. On-site Reg: 8:30am-9:30am. Reserve (1200-1800) Prizes: $720; 1st-$320-2nd-$150. Top U1700, U1600, U1500, U1400, U1300-$50 Available 1-Day Option. 30/90 G/1, 30/90 G/30, Rds: Sat: 10am-3pm; Sun: 1:45pm-5:45pm. On-site Reg: 8:30am-9:30am. Booster (U1200): Prizes: Trophies to Top 5 overall. Top U1000, U900, U800, U700- all receive trophies. Max: 1 Trophy/Player. G/45. Available 1-Day Option. Rds: Sun: 10:00am, 12:15am, 2:00pm, 3:45 pm. All Entries To: Jason Gurtovoy, 34249 Fremont Blvd. #158 Fremont, CA 94555 On-site Reg: 8:30am -9:30am. Standard USCF Tie-Breaks will be used for trophies. For More Information: Jason at for info/advance entries. E-mail: Web Site: Entry: Discounts on Entry Fee for entering Multiple Events in Festival. Please download flyer from for more information. NS, NC, W.

November 23-26 American Open A 42-year tradition, Southern California's premier tournament offers a large prize fund, eight rounds of quality chess, choice of 4- or 3-day schedule, one or two half-point byes if you need them, around-the-clock videos, and free lectures by GMs -- this year, former US champ Alex Yermolinsky and Ian Rogers (who witnessed the recent world championship match in Elista), as well as the ever-popular IM Jeremy Silman. For full details and to enter online, please visit our website:

Nov. 25-26 Scott Kittsley Quick Chess Festival (QC) GPP: 15 Wisconsin 8SS, G/29, QC. Best Western Hotel, 5105 S. Howell Ave, Milwaukee WI 53207. Free shuttle from airport, free parking. Prizes $3,600 based on 80 paid entries per section. OPEN: $1,000-500-300, u2200 $250, u2000 $200. Under1800: $450-250, u1400 $175, u1200 $150, unrated $100, K-12 $125-100. EF: $50 if postmarked by 11/18, $70 later. $5 off advance EF per player if 5 or more enter together, $20 off advance EF per K-12 player if 5 or more teammates enter together. Cash only at site. Re-entry $30. Reg: Sat 10-11:30am, Rds: Sat 12-2-3:30-5, Sun 10-12-1:30-3:00. Bye all, limit 4, must commit before rd 2. HR: $65, 414-769-2100, reserve early. Ent: Ashish Vaja, Chief Director; 6822 N.Crestwood Dr; Glendale, WI 53209. Checks payable to Ashish Vaja. $5 charge for refunds. Questions:, 608-233-0923.

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