Mechanics' Institute Chess Room Newsletter #84

There are two kinds of equal positions. Equal positions you like to play, and equal positions you can't stand the sight of.
   Viswanathan Anand

1) Lakdawala and Mezentsev win 6th Charles Linklater Memorial
2) Wong and Snyder share lead in Spring Tuesday Night Marathon
3) 5-way tie for first in Edward Levy Memorial Open
4) Imre Konig Memorial this September 
5) MI Chess History: Walter Romaine Lovegrove
6) Cal Chess Membership
7) The Turk is Coming
8) Upcoming Events

1) Lakdawala and Mezentsev win 6th Charles Linklater Memorial

Cyrus Lakdawala and Vladimir Mezentsev tied for first in the 6th Charles Linklater Memorial held April 4-21. The two winners, who each scored 7-3 in the Category 4 (2337 FIDE average) roundrobin, also made IM norms. For the San Diego based Lakdawala it was his third and final norm and he will receive his long overdue title at the FIDE Congress in Slovenia later this year. This was the second norm for Mezentsev who needs one more result for the title.

This was the 8th IM or GM norm event held at the club since the end of 1998. A total of 17 IM norms and 1 GM norm have been earned in MI events during this time. One might get the impression that the MI is a title mill, but the reality is quite different. Lakdawala and Mezentsev have both been rated over 2500 USCF and 2400 FIDE for many years. If they lived in Europe they would have been IMs a long time ago, but lacked the opportunities. The list of players who have made norms in MI events reads like a list of some of the best young talent in North America (G. Shahade, Bhat, Krush, Mulyar, Zugic, Kraai and so on). The only player rated below 2450 USCF to make a norm at the MI is Richard Lobo (usually around 2360) who achieved it the hard way in one event. He lost his first three and then scored 5 1/2 from 6! The point is that the MI is just about the only place in the US to try for roundrobin norms.

The credit for this event goes to Anthony Corrales. He not only organized and directed, but also found the sponsorship.

Other scores: 3. De Guzman 6; 4-5. Lobo and Nambiar 5.5; 6. Rey 5; 7-8. Donaldson and Shivaji 4.5; 9-10. Shivaji and Keatinge-Clay 4; 11. Thornally 2

Special mention should be made of FM Frank Thornally. Playing in his first serious tournament in several decades, Thornally lost his first seven games, but then showed great strength of character to rebound with two wins at the end of the event.

2) Wong and Snyder share lead in Spring Tuesday Night Marathon

Larry Snyder defeated top-seed Egle Morkunaite and Russell Wong drew with fellow NM David Blohm to grab the lead after five rounds of the 61-player Spring Tuesday Night Marathon. 1-2. Snyder and NM Wong 4.5; 3-7. NM Margulis, NM Hernandez, Ossipov, NM Blohm and Jones 4.

3) 5-way tie for first in Edward Levy Memorial Open

The Edward Levy Memorial, held April 19-21 in Denver, finished in a 5-way tie for first at 4-1 between GMs Gregory Kaidanov, Alex Shabalov, Alex Stripunsky, Ildar Ibragimov and Georgi Kacheishvili. The 325-player event, the largest Colorado event in recent memory, was super strong with 15 GMs competing in the 42-player top section. MI member Kayven Reise tied for first in the Under 1800 section at 4-1. Bill Goichberg organized and directed for the Continental Chess Association.

4) Imre Konig Memorial this September

The MI held strong Grandmaster roundrobins events in 1987, 1991, 1995 and 1998, but nothing of this stature since then. We hope to change this state of affairs this September by organizing a special tournament to honor the 10th anniversary of the death of International Master Imre Konig.

National Masters Tibor Weinberger and Mark Pinto have made very generous donations to make this event possible. GMs Alexander Baburin (Ireland), John Fedorowicz (USA), Yury Shulman (Belarus) and Alex Wojtkiewicz (Poland) have already committed to playing along with two of America's top young talents, Varuzhan Akobian and local hero Vinay Bhat. We would like to round out the field with even more strong players, but to do this we need to do more fund raising. If you would like to make a tax deductible donation, contact John Donaldson at (415) 421-2258 or

5) MI Chess History: Walter Romaine Lovegrove

This weekend, the MI will be hosting its annual Senior Open in memory of the Club's first great champion, Dr. Walter Romaine Lovegrove (October 24, 1869 - July 18, 1956). Rounds for this event, open to players 50 and over, are 10 and 4:30 daily. Complete information is provided below.

The following appreciation was written by Dr. "Bip" Ralston who was instrumental in helping to get the California Chess Reporter started.

Dr. W.R. Lovegrove by Dr. H.J. Ralston

Dr. Walter Romaine Lovegrove, emeritus master of the United States, died in San Francisco on July 18, 1956, He was 86 years old.

For over 60 years Dr. Lovegrove was one of San Francisco's leading players. Born October 24, 1869, he learned the game of chess at the age of 16 by studying the article on chess in the Encyclopedia Britannica. During the period 1886-1890 he strengthened his game by playing at the Mechanics' Institute Chess Club in San Francisco, finally becoming so strong that in one tournament he gave odds to all the other contestants, yet still won the tournament.

Dr. Lovegrove was the winner of the final Pillsbury National Correspondence Tournament. In 1891 he won a match from Joseph Redding, who claimed the championship of the Pacific Coast, by a score of 7-1. Max Judd, who was prominent in national chess circles, visited San Francisco about the same time, and Dr. Lovegrove won six out of seven games in casual play. The American champion, J.W. Showalter, also visited San Francisco, and although he had the edge over Dr. Lovegrove in casual play, lost no less than 12 games to him out of about 30 played.

In 1893 Dr. Lovegrove visited Los Angeles, where he met and conquered Simon Lipshutz by a score of 3 1/2 - 1/2. The American Championship was in a rather foggy state in those days, but technically, the present writer believes, Lipshutz was still the champion, by virtue of his decisive win over Showalter, in their match of 1892. However, one must admit that Dr. Lovegrove's victory over Lipshutz must be weighed with caution because of the very uncertain nature of the champion's health. Lipshutz was a chronic sufferer from tuberculosis, which caused his premature death at the age of 42.

Dr. Lovegrove beat Van Vliet in London, 1912, in the only game played; he beat Taubenhaus in Paris in the same year, 10-1. In Vienna, 1922, playing as usual for a dollar a game, he won one and lost one to Dr. Tartakover - who said he did not care to play Lovegrove any more because he couldn't make a living that way. In 1902 he played Dr. Emanuel Lasker a stake game in San Francisco; the champion of the world tried to win a drawn game, and lost. Again in 1904, an exhibition game was won by Dr. Lovegrove against the American Champion, Harry Pillsbury. Pillsbury grabbed a pawn, allowing Dr. Lovegrove to obtain a crushing kingside attack.

California Chess Reporter 1956

6) Cal Chess Membership

Cal Chess, the official body representing the United States Chess Federation in Northern California, is becoming increasingly active under President Tom Dorsch and California Chess Journal Editor Frisco del Rosario and deserves support. Members receive discounts on the entry fee to many chess tournaments in Northern California as well as a subscription to the bimonthly Journal which includes annotations by the likes of GM Alex Yermolinsky. The cost of a years membership is $15 ($13 for scholastic). Contact Tom Dorsch at POB 7453, Menlo Park CA 94026. (650) 322-0955

Since the beginning of April the MI has been offering a $2 discount for its weekend events to Cal Chess Members.

7) The Turk is Coming

Do you remember the Turk? No, we are not talking about Grandmaster Suat Atalik of Istanbul, but the famous chessplaying machine of the 18th century which is the subject of a recent book (THE TURK: The Life and Times of the Famous Eighteenth Century-Chess Playing Machine) by Tom Standage. He will be talking about "Thinking about Thinking Machines, 1769-2002" and signing copies of THE TURK in San Francisco on the following dates:

   * May 28 @ 7:00 PM: The Booksmith, 1644 Haight Street    * May 29 @ 12:30 PM: Stacey's Booksellers, 581 Market Street

For additional information about the book and/or Tom Standage, please visit

8) Upcoming Events

Mechanics' Institute Event:

The Walter Lovegrove Senior Open April 27th-28th, 2002
4 Round Swiss Open to players 50 and over
Round One 10:00am, Round Two 4:30 - April 27th...............
Round Three10:00am, Round Four 4:30 - April 28th Late Registration is from 9-9:30 am on April 27th.
Time Control: 50/2, SD/1 Entry Fee:$30 for MI members, $35 for non-members. Both $5 more after April 24th. $2 discount to CalChess members.
Prizes (600 b/20) :$200-$125-$75. Class A: $80, Class B: $65, Class C and under: $55

May 10-12 GPP: 15 N. California
Bay Area Masters Spring Grand Prix II.
Open to players rated 2200 & above on the April 2002 USCF rating list. 5SS, 30/90, 30/60, SD/15. Mechanics' Institute, 57 Post St., San Francisco. $$1700 b/22 pd. ents: $1000-500-200. EF: $100 by May 7, $120 after, GMs & IMs free. Reg: 5/10 4-4:30, Rds: 5pm, 11-5, 11-5. Ent/Info: Guillermo Rey, 435 Firecrest Ave., Pacifica, CA 94044. (650) 355-0305, FIDE rated.May 11-12 GPP: 30 Maryland

May 18 2nd Charles Powell Memorial G/45 at the MI
PRIZES:$600 - total, based on 25 paid entries.
1st 200, 2nd $100, top U2200 $90, U2000 $75, U1800 $70, U1600 $65. ENTRY FEE:
$25 for MI members, $30 for non-members, $5 discount to juniors
Late fee of $5 for entries received after May 14. Make checks payable to the Mechanics' Institute. REGISTRATION:
9AM-9:30AM ROUNDS: 10am, 12pm, 2pm, 4pm, 6pm For more information: (415) 421-2258 or Email us

June 7-9 Stamer Memorial
Jun. 14-16 GPP: 15 N. California
Bay Area Masters Summer Grand Prix III.
Open to players rated 2200 & above on the June 2002 USCF rating list. 5SS, 30/90, 30/60, SD/15. Mechanics' Institute, 57 Post St., San Francisco. $$1700 b/22 pd. ents: $1000-500-200. EF: $100 by 6/11, $120 after, GMs & IMs free. Reg: 5/10 4-4:30, Rds: 5pm, 11-5, 11-5. Ent/Info: Guillermo Rey, 435 Firecrest Ave., Pacifica, CA 94044. (650) 355-0305, FIDE rated.Jun. 21-23 GPP: 15 Arizona

June 22 2nd William Addison Open G/45 (same details as Powell)

Regional Events:

Hercules Open April 27th and 28th

$1,350 based on 50 paid entries at The Mechanics Bank (Operations Center), 725 Alfred Noble Dr., in Hercules, CA!!
Directions: From SF/Berkeley: take Interstate I-80 East to State Route 4/ Hercules Exit -(willow Rd.). Make right turn off ramp onto Willow Rd. then make another right turn at light onto Sycamore Dr. Then a right turn at light on San Pablo Ave. Then make a left turn on John Muir Parkway, entrance to North Shore Business Park at the intersection of John Muir Parkway and San Pablo Ave. Then make the only right turn onto Alfred Noble Dr. Go up the hill to 725 Alfred Noble Dr. The Mechanics Bank. From State Hwy 4: Travel East on State HWY 4 to John Muir Parkway Exit. Keep straight into the North Shore Business Park at the intersection of San Pablo Ave. and John Muir Parkway. Then make the only right turn onto Alfred Noble Dr. Go up hill to 725 The Mechanics Bank (Operations Center). From Vallejo/ Napa: take Interstate I-80 West to Willow Rd. Exit. Make Right off interstate and go up to San Pablo Ave.-Make the only left turn. Make a Right turn onto John Muir Parkway at the intersection of State Route 4 and John Muir Pkwy, into the North Shore Business Park. Then make the only right turn on Alfred Noble Dr. Go up hill to 725 The Mechanics Bank. Free Parking / skittles room! See the most beautiful site in the East Bay!!

One Section: 4 Round Swiss, G/2, (Limited to 50 Players) $350-250-150, Best X $140, Best A $130, Best B $120, Best C $110, Best D/E/Unr. $100.
Pre-entries: $35.00 if postmarked by 4/20/01; $40.00 at site/no checks at site. Make checks payable and send to: Rico Adkins, 15696 Crestwood Dr. #172, San Pablo, CA 94806. Please include your name, address, & USCF number and Exp. Date, and rating with entry. Byes must commit before first round. USCF membership required, membership renewal available at site. Apr. Supplement used. Questions/ Info. (510) 262-9061/e-mail: Reg. ends at Sat 9:30 am. Rounds: Sat 10:30am, 3:30pm; Sun 10am 3:00pm. Bring sets, clocks.

CalChess San Mateo Swiss
May and 5

Four USCF-rated games for $20! No cash prizes, an inexpensive weekend Swiss! Support your state organization! Any profit from this event will benefit CalChess!
CalChess San Mateo Swiss
When: May 4 and 5, 2002
Where: American Legion Hall, 130 South Blvd., San Mateo (from Highway 92 in San Mateo, exit El Camino Real north, first right on 17th Ave., first left on Palm, first right on South Blvd.). Format: Four-round Swiss in eight sections: Master, Expert, A, B, C, D, E, Under 1000 (Ratings from April 2002 supplement will be used; strict class divisions: no one plays up). Round Times: 11 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. both days (half-point byes available all rounds, bye for round 4 must be requested before May 4). Late registration 10 a.m. Saturday. Time Control: Sudden death in 2 hours.
Prizes: Three trophies or plaques in each section.
Entry Fee: $20 to CalChess members (membership expiration dates before May 1, 2002), $40 to non-members, if received by May 1. $10 more at site. USCF membership required. A one-year membership in CalChess gives you discounted entry fees into participating tournaments, and six issues of the award-winning California Chess Journal
A regular one-year membership costs $15.
Registration and Information: Tournament director Frisco Del Rosario, 126 15th Ave., San Mateo CA 94402-2414 (650) 868-5187 no calls before 4 p.m., e-mail preferred to
Graphic: Beneath the San Mateo/Hayward Bridge
Name ____________________________________________________________________
Address ___________________________________________________________________
City _______________________________________ State ___________ Zip ___________
E-mail address ______________________________ Phone_________________________
USCF ID# __________________________________ Exp. date _______ Rating _________
Checks payable to Frisco Del Rosario ($20 entry fee for CalChess members, $40 for non-members who may join CalChess for $15 for one year, $28 for two years, $41 for three years, scholastic memberships $13 for one year), mail to 126 Fifteenth Ave., San Mateo CA 94402.

Jun. 1-2 GPP: 6 N. California
The Class Struggle.
4SS, G/2. Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union, corner of Bancroft & Telegraph Ave., U.C. Berkeley Campus. Parking $5 all day at corner of Bancfoft & Fulton, bring quarters. $$2,000 Gtd. Open: (All) $300-150. X: $250-125. A: $200-110. B: $175-90. C: $150-80. D: $125-75. E: $100-70. Unr. must play in Open sect. Sects. may be combined. Reg: 6/1 8:30-9:30, Rds: 10-3, 10-3. EF: $30 by 5/25, $40 after, $5 disc. to UC students. Don't mail ents. After 5/25 as campus mail is slow. Players may play up for $10 additional. One 1/2 pt. bye avail., must be takent at reg. Please bring equip., none provided. TD: Richard Koepcke. Info: 650-964-2640, no phone ents! Ent: ASUC/Superb Prod.-Academic Games, 5 Eshleman Hall, #4500, Berkeley, CA 94720-4500. NS,NC,W,FIDE.

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