28 October 2023

2022 FWFRCC Hikaru's Climb

The previous post, 2022 FWFRCC Lichess Swiss Group 2 (October 2023), featured IM Eric Rosen, a popular chess streamer, broadcasting his participation in an intermediate stage of last year's 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship', aka FWFRCC. The post quoted IM Rosen saying,
This is a more serious stream than usual. It's a [Chess960] World Championship and this is stage two. [...] To move on beyond this tournament I need to finish top-18.

That post provided enough background to locate online resources that documented the entire FWFRCC event. This current post features GM Hikaru Nakamura, an even more popular streamer, who won the entire event. For more background, see last year's post 2022 FWFRCC Finals - Live (November 2022). The following video covers the end of the last stage of the event.

Dear YouTube, Meet Your New World Champion (44:17) • '[Published on] Oct 31, 2022'

The video's description said,

Hikaru played Ian Nepomniachtchi in the Fischer Random World Chess Championship in Iceland on October 30, 2022, and WON! Here's his recap of the last five games.

The video was the last in a series by Nakamura that captured, from start to finish, his climb to the C960/FRC title. The winner's Youtube channel (GMHikaru) currently boasts '2.15M subscribers'. I found nine videos relevant to the 2022 FWFRCC on the channel:-

The video embedded on this post is the last clip of the series. It currently has over 519K views and over 2200 comments. The first comment says,

The man just won the Fischer 960 World Championship. Does he rest or go out for celebratory drinks or dinner -- nope, he goes back to the hotel, gets back to work, and gives his fans/subscribers a recap and analysis. Hikaru, you’re a true gift to the game of chess. Congratulations and thank you!

You might have a problem with GM Nakamura's brash style -or- you might have a problem with the idea of C960/FRC, but that's your problem. Naka is a legitimate World Champion in a chess discipline of the 21st century.

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