30 September 2023

What about Biel?

The annual chess960 tournaments at Biel (Switzerland) have been running for some years now and I've never given them a good look. In a recent post, Talking About Chess960 (July 2023), Biel appeared twice with links to the results:-
'ACCENTUS Chess960 (ACC) - Biel International Chess Festival (bielchessfestival.ch; w/ PGN)' *and* 'Swiss Rapid Fischer Random Championship (bielchessfestival.ch) • The runner-up was popular streamer "IM Rosen Eric"; possible action: review his resources.'

That first tournament, 2023 ACCENTUS, was streamed live; the coverage starts at 9:10 in the following video:-

Biel Chess Festival 2023: GMT Chess 960 (2:59:21) • 'Streamed live on Jul 15, 2023'

The description doesn't add much except an error:-

Biel Chess Festival 2022 [?; sic] live from Biel/Bienne, Switzerland.

Before I discovered this video, my objective in the search was to learn about best practices for organizing and directing an OTB (i.e. not online) chess960 tournament. The year 2023 saw both a round-robin and a Swiss chess960 event in Biel. What can be learned from them?

It turns out that this video is the first of two parts and that there are previous year streams going back to 2020. Before I go any further with this post, I need to determine exactly what I'm looking at.

23 September 2023

2023 Champions Showdown, Videos

In the previous post, 2023 Champions Showdown, St. Louis (September 2023), I quoted a press release from the Saint Louis Chess Club which started,
SAINT LOUIS, September 12, 2023 - GM Sam Sevian won the 2023 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX after a brilliant final day [...]

Here's a video from the club's Youtube channel featuring a chat with the winner not long after he won the event.

9LX Champ Sevian: 960 Helps the Imagination (5:09) • '[Published on] Sep 11, 2023'

The description said,

Sam Sevian talks to Cristian Chirila after going [+2-0=1] and winning the event on the third day of the 2023 Chess 9LX.

The three days of action were streamed live on the same channel under the title '2023 Champions Showdown | Chess 9LX':-

The description for the first day said,

Live from the World Chess Hall of Fame, the sixth Chess 9LX event is a 10-player Fischer Random chess (Chess960) round robin rapid tournament (with pairings). Today are the first three rounds. Join GMs Yasser Seirawan, Cristian Chirila, and IM Nazi Paikidze for the move-by-move.

For all of the club's videos for the event, see:-

The playlist includes two more videos featuring GM Sevian.

16 September 2023

2023 Champions Showdown, St. Louis

The top chess960 tournament of the year is undoubtedly the annual event hosted by the St. Louis chess club. The results for this year were announced on the club's blog in Grandmaster Sam Sevian Delivers Brilliant Performance to Win 2023 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX (saintlouischessclub.org). The press release started,
SAINT LOUIS, September 12, 2023 - GM Sam Sevian won the 2023 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX after a brilliant final day, where he defeated a competitive field including legendary former World Champion Garry Kasparov and World No. 2 Fabiano Caruana to take home the $37,500 first place prize.

The crosstable shows that GM Sevian won the event without a loss, a full point ahead of the next group of players.

2023 Champions Showdown Chess 9LX

I'll have more to say about the event in the next post. For the report on last year's event, see 2022 Champions Showdown, St. Louis (September 2022).