2004 U.S. Championship to be held in San Diego!

After hosting the widely successful 2003 U.S. Championship, Erik Anderson and the America's Foundation for Chess (AF4C) will move the 2004 tournament from Seattle to San Diego.  AF4C will join with sponsor NTC Foundation to host the 11-day tournament which will boast a generous prize fund of $250,000. This year's field has been expanded to 64 players and the winner will represent America in the FIDE World Knockout Championships.

"AF4C has been looking for a partner whose mission is aligned with ours: NTC supports creative education and believes in the value the U.S. Chess Championships can bring to the national expansion of the AF4C classroom chess curriculum," said Erik J Anderson, president and co-founder of AF4C.

America's Foundation for Chess, http://www.af4c.org

The rejuvenated format is also an interesting twist as this will mark the fourth year in which players must qualify from any one of the select tournaments held throughout the year.  In the past championship held in January, GM Alexander Shabalov bested the field of 58 players to take the $25,000 prize. This year, there hopes to be even more new faces competing. The criteria listed on the AF4C website is as follows:

  • 43 qualifying players from various open tournaments
  • 17 seeded players
  • 2 from a State Champions' qualifying event
  • 2 AF4C wildcard players

For those who attended the 2003 Championship, it was indeed a historic event in a magical atmosphere. This year's event hopes to showcase new talent in hopes of reaching a wider audience. Stay tuned!

Erik Anderson awarding WIM Anna Hahn and GM Alexander Shabalov their prizes.

WIM Anna Hahn & GM Alexander Shabalov
receiving prizes from Erik Anderson
(photo by Daaim Shabazz)

Posted by The Chess Drum: 24 December 2003