Author: Chess Club Staff

Chess Tournaments
Registration for Summer Fun Opens

The tournament is scheduled for 06/21/2022 – 07/19/2022. Please register here:

https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1625

“Summer Fun” a 4 round event with games on Tuesdays (except for July 5th due to the Holiday). FACE MASKS ARE RECOMMENDED BUT NOT REQUIRED. Each Round starts at 6:45 pm and the Club opens at 6:00. The time control is Game/85 min. with 5 second delay. Two 1/2 point byes are available. Byes should be requested by Mondays at 5:00 pm. Last round byes must be requested before the start of Round 3. The entry fee is $30 and should be paid online. Advance registration is strongly advised. If you have trouble registering online contact us (John or Axel) and we can register you and you can pay the registration fee before round one starts. Players that don’t register before the day of the tournament will have to pay a late fee and might not get a game in round one. Cell phones are allowed but must be placed on vibrate. All players must be SGVCC members. New members should pay in person. All prior memberships from our Sierra Madre location are still in good standing and will be honored. Prizes TBD based on entries. This tournament will be played in two sections. We meet at Altadena Community Church in Heicher Hall, located at 943 East Altadena Drive, Altadena, CA 91101 For more information contact us here: https://sgvchess.club/contact/

Chess Tournaments
SGV Chess Club’s Millard Open Starts 02-08-2022

The San Gabriel Valley Chess Club is happy to announce the next 5-round Swiss tournament starting Tuesday February 8th. Games will be played Tuesdays at 6.45 pm and the time control is G85 D5. The address is:

 943 E Altadena Dr, Altadena, CA 91001 (right behind the Altadena Community Church)

It is a one section Open but will have accelerated pairings for the first two rounds. This helps to make for smaller rating differences in the early rounds.  Accelerated pairings give the upper half of the field a virtual point to start. But unlike our last event we will remove the virtual point after Round 2 so the standings show actual scores.

There will be a first prize for the Open and a first prize for under 1600.  The amount will be based on the number of entries. The entry fee is $30.00 for advance registration and $35.00 for registration  after February 8th.

If you have trouble with doing an online payment you only need to let us know by calling John Wright at (626) 864-5744, who will register you and then you just pay $30 at the door. The registration link is:

https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1379

Pairings and standings will be posted here:

https://caissachess.net/live/1379

Chess Club News
Webster and Vieregg Share First at the Holiday Swiss

The Holiday Swiss concluded on December 21st and saw Wilton “Will” Webster and Craig Vieregg go 3.5 out of 4 to share first place. It was a Tale of Two Tournaments due to the accelerated pairing format and it would have been fun to see the two winners play each other had there been one more round. This was Craig’s second strong showing and no one is likely fooled anymore by his old 1517 rating from yesteryear. In only nine games over two SGVCC events he has gained 163 rating points!

Webster, on the other hand, was playing in his first SGVCC event and a bit of a chess enigma. A check of his USCF profile showed a near Master rating of 2143 based on only 23 games. Quite the affable fellow upon meeting him, the mystery became a bit clearer when he shared that he had a British Chess Federation rating from his days in college at Sussex and had put in a lot of work playing online games. Nevertheless, quite impressive. But his path to victory was anything but smooth. As he himself put it:

“One could also argue that the story line of my tournament was fighting on until things broke my way (drawing a losing position, winning a forcibly drawn position, and then winning two completely lost positions), but anyone who’s read my previous write-ups will already know that my proclivity toward swindling people after blundering is the rule, rather than the exception.”

Indeed! The two “completely lost positions” were in rounds 3 & 4, first against Raymond Armagnac (2159) and then NM Karl Tolentino. Raymond sacrificed material for a vicious attack but Will found a saving perpetual with his Queen. Never one to settle for the half point the “Big A” refused it and pushed on only to blunder later. In the final round Tolentino was up the exchange and again had what looked like an unstoppable mating attack. But Karl missed the one lone shot Black had with a knight check and resigned immediately. Such is chess.

A few other notable performances were David Faulkner, who won his last three games to finish at 3 points and 10 year old Ashley Lin. Lin went an undefeated 2.5 and earned draws against Class A player Nathan Gan and 1700+ rated David Munoz, raising her own rating from 1139 to 1320. Twenty eight players competed and not a bad turnout for an event in December. The Echo Mountain Open is currently underway.

Enjoy Will’s annotations:

sgvchess-logo
Chess Tournaments
PLAY IN THE ECHO MOUNTAIN OPEN!

We are starting the New Year with a five round Swiss we are calling the Echo Mountain Open. It will begin on January 4th and finish on February 1st.  It is a one section Open but will have accelerated pairings for the first two rounds. This helps to make for smaller rating differences in the early rounds.  Accelerated pairings give the upper half of the field a virtual point to start. But unlike our last event we will remove the virtual point after Round 2 so the standings show actual scores.

There will be a first prize for the Open and a first prize for under 1600.  The amount will be based on the number of entries. The entry fee is $30.00 for advance registration and $35.00 for registration  after January 3rd. If you have trouble with doing an online payment you only need to let us know by calling John Wright at (626) 864-5744, who will register you and then you just pay $30 at the door. The registration link is:

https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1329

Chess Club News
Experience Prevails at Altadena Open

Top rated Karl Tolentino won the five round Altadena Open with a score of 4.5 holding off several young challengers along the way. He took one bye and won the rest of his games. Learn from Karl’s instructive comments:

Sharing second were “veteran” players Raymond Armagnac and Tim Thompson at 4-1. With so many events dominated by young players these days our winners likely boosted the confidence of their peers.

Still, youth definitely made its presence felt. The Champ had to hold off Nathan Gan (see game) and Benjamin Teng to close the deal. Teng had beaten strong Expert Hamlet Tovmasyan in the penultimate round to set up a showdown with Tolentino. The 12 year old appeared to have a promising position as Black but got in time trouble and the National Master showed his mettle. Also deserving recognition were youngsters Ashley Lin (10) and Evelyn “Evie” Hsing (8), who both scored wins over higher rated opponents and netted over 100 rating points each.

But the early surprise was Craig Vieregg, who entered with an old 1517 rating form the year 1998. And after three rounds he had beaten one Expert, drawn another, and was tied for first! In Round 4 he faced Arturo Armagnac and had two passed pawns in a Queen ending. Never one to give up, Arturo found a perpetual check with his Queen and split the point. Thompson handed Vieregg his only loss in Round 5 but it was hard fought and quite a performance by Craig. Beware of old ratings! Online chess has shown that you can make big improvements without playing over the board chess.

This was our first event at our new location in Altadena and a pleasant surprise was the addition of 17 new SGVCC members. The event also had a number of unrated adults playing their very first rated event. So thank you to everyone for participating and getting us off to a good start! Our next event will be the Holiday Swiss, a four rounder starting November 30 and you can sign up here:

https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1263

Holiday OTB Chess Club in Pasadena
Chess Tournaments
Holiday Swiss Starts Nov. 30

The next in person tournament will be a four round Holiday Swiss. It starts November 30th and the last round will be December 21st. Register here: https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1263

If enough players sign up we will be able to offer two or more categories to play in. We will be posting details for registration soon.

We are also continuing to offer online tournaments. Below is a very instructive game from the ongoing Hort Open, enjoy!

Chess Tournaments
Louis Pasteur Memorial Round 3: Openings gone wrong

In this round we were treated to some very good games. Randy and Artem worked together to create this beautiful cluster of knights in the center.

You can find the pairings for the last round here:

https://caissachess.net/live/1027

The pairings will be finalized on Tuesday evening, so for the moment these pairings you find there are preliminary.

The winner and the top <1800 player will get prizes. Since we might resume over the board chess games soon again we probably won’t have time for a tiebreaker this time.

Some of the players joining our online tournaments live too far away to join us for OTB tournaments and some players might not be ready yet for indoor meetings. If there is some demand I am more than happy to continue to offer online tournaments. We might have to opt for another time though. Please let me know what you think and send an email to: [email protected]

Here are the annotated games of round 3:

Chess Tournaments
Louis Pasteur Memorial: The first two rounds

The first two rounds of the Louis Pasteur Memorial saw some exciting chess and some upsets. In round 1 David Faulkner narrowly missed a win and allowed Kevin Zhang to escape with a draw. In round 2 Kevin’s brother Arthur Zhang played a beautiful Italian and beat me quite convincingly.

Things obviously went wrong for me. How did Arthur finish the game in style?

Artem Aleksenko showed some good fighting spirit in both of his games. In his game against John Wright Artem kept pushing in a drawn rook ending and John, under time pressure, went wrong. In the second round Artem defended with a minute left against Gerald Ruiz assault and the game ended in a draw. Earlier Gerald, true to his name, sacrificed his queen and got very close to winning the game. Artem’s active defense muddied the waters enough to escape with a draw.

Larry Stevens is faithfully sticking to the Queen’s Gambit Accepted. Manu Prasad went for 3. Nc3

This is an inaccuracy. Larry treats us to a masterclass on how to exploit this.

The pairings for round three will be published on Tuesday evening at the usual place:

https://caissachess.net/live/1027

Round 1 games:

Round 2 games: