Josh Colas @ 2014 Denker

Josh and Guy Colas after 2014 Denker.
Photo by Daaim Shabazz.

Josh Colas has had many successes in his tournament career, but he has had a rough going lately. With two subpar results in the U.S. Junior Closed and the Cadet Championship, he entered the Denker Tournament hoping to make an impact.

Leading late in the tournament with 4.5/5 he faced Christopher Gu in the finale. He explained to The Chess Drum that he went into an ending with two bishops, but after trading one pair he was saddled with the bad bishop and lost a technical ending.

It was a disappointment for Colas who ended up 3rd-5th, but clearly he is back on track. It is also refreshing to know that he has two more chances to win this tournament. His focus appears to be in consistent form to earn GM/IM norms. (Standings)

His father Guy Colas shared the story that Josh had not used any database analysis tools, nor did he have a laptop. During one of the U.S. Chess School meetings, IM Greg Shahade was shocked to discover this. In fact to make 2400 without these tools is a testament in itself.

During his slump, Josh had been wayward with his opening preparation and suffered for it. Now Josh has been outfitted with a new laptop and the latest software tools and thus, his improved performance. We had a chance to chat with Josh before he took the flight out of Orlando.

The Chess Drum with Josh Colas
3:29 minutes


  1. Balancing chess and school is no easy feat. Thus, I take my hat off to Josh in doing them both very well. It brings back memories when GM Ashley jokingly thanked me in my yearbook for the 79 average in the 10 th grade because we played so much chess together that particular year at Brooklyn Tech H.S. He felt that we played so much chess that it adversely affected his grades. I have to admit that he immediately got his GPA back to its high standards nonetheless. I mention this only to emphasize that maintaining a high academic standard while pursuing a masters degree, if you will, in chess is no easy task.. I wish Josh much success in all of his endeavours. He is my nephew and I see the torch has surely been passed on and I pray that he can carry it on to the finish line.

  2. Thanks for the write up Daaim. As a supplement, the setback that Josh lamented from the US Junior Closed and the U.S. Cadets may have been a blessing in disguised. He’s even more determined now to march on towards achieving his goals. Seems like nothing dismays him and with such unremitting spirit, nothing will stop him from achieving his objective. It’s just a matter of time.

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