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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
Aleksenko Perfect in Euwe Open!

Artem Aleksenko went an undefeated 5-0 to win the Euwe Open, our most recent Friday  night online event. He finished in style with a nice game against NM John Wright where he delivered  a knockout blow after Black snatched a pawn with Qxd4.

NM  Larry Stevens took second with 3.5, his only loss also by Artem. Special kudos to Russel Keating who won his last 3 games, including a win over the always tough Arturo Armagnac.

A new Friday online event starts October 29, sign up here

https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1241

Alta Dena Community Church
Chess Club News
In-Person Chess Returns to San Gabriel Valley Chess Club October 19th!

New Site – New Night!

We are very pleased to announce that we will hold “The Altadena Open,” a five round Swiss starting Tuesday, October 19, 2021, at the Altadena Community Church located at 943 East Altadena Drive in Altadena, CA 91001, our new meeting site. All existing Club memberships will be honored and reset anew. You may register in advance here:
https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1214

It has been 17 months since our last event at the Sierra Madre YMCA, a site we truly loved but unable to reopen for our needs since the pandemic.  We also know that Friday night chess has a long tradition in our area, but it is not a night where we can find an available site.  So, like the Arcadia Chess Club–which met on a work/school night for years with great success–we will do the same. 

Play will take place at the Church’s Heicher Hall, a large building that can seat 200 people with a stage, kitchen and private parking lot. Heicher Hall sits to the back and the right of the Church building. 

OTB Chess Club Altadena

The Church has two parking lots. The closest to the playing site entrance is the upper lot that you access by the driveway on the right. PLEASE DO NOT PARK IN ANY NUMBERED SPACE AS THEY ARE RESERVED FOR TENANTS. There is also a lower level lot off the street and street parking is available.

src=”http://sgvchess.club/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/SGVCC-Parking-Lot-A-2-rotated.jpeg” alt=””> src=”http://sgvchess.club/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/SGVCC-Parking-Lot-B-rotated.jpeg” alt=”Alta Dena Church Parking”>

Doors will open at 6:30 pm. and will close by 10:00pm.  As a result, we will have a single time control game each round like Game/85 with 5-second delay.  Games will start around 6:50.  Again, we understand this is not the time control some are used to, but we we either adapt to the situation or remain closed—something we have endured far too long. Register for the tournament here: https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1214

In Los Angeles County, everyone must still wear a mask in all indoor public settings, venues, gatherings, public and private businesses and at outdoor Mega Events, regardless of their vaccination status. When people wear a mask correctly, they protect others as well as themselves. Don’t make us ask, wear a mask.

So this is a new chapter in San Gabriel Valley Chess Club’s young story and one we hope you will share with us. 

Who could have known when we had our grand opening in March of 2020 what was forthcoming. Nor can anyone predict what is still in store. But as chess players, we do best in our games when we can adapt and respond to the unexpected. And so it is here.  We have found an opportunity to meet and play again in person during a most challenging time and that says a lot.

Chess Tournaments
Larry Stevens Wins Capa Open

Congrats to NM Larry Stevens who only gave up a draw in his march to first place in the Capablanca Open. “Mr. e4” scores a nice win over top seed NM Axel Müller along the way. The event only had 8 participants and we are hoping more of you will join us for the 5 round Euwe Open that starts on September 17th. It will be played at our usual LiChess SGVCC Site. You need to join SGVCC at that site and let us know if you need any assistance.

Sign up here:
https://caissachess.net/online-registration/index/1174

We will also hold The Cardano Open, a 6 minute +1 Arena Blitz event on September 10th. Join the fun!

Join us here: https://lichess.org/tournament/gZDPksxW. The password is:

sgv