TCD in “Best of U.S. Chess” 2016

U.S. Chess Line Online ranks its top articles each year and The Chess Drum’s feature on FM Josh Colas made the cut at #8. Colas is a freshman at Webster University and at the time of the article had just earned his first GM norm. The article features the evolution of this humble product of White Plains, New York. Below are the judges’ laudatory comments.

The Judges Sound Off

“This inspiring article written by Daaim Shabazz is a great tribute to Joshua Colas and his family. I especially appreciate the biographical style of the article covering Josha’s upbringing, his family life, school life and his future plans to attend Webster on a scholarship. Knowing what kind of talent Webster churns out, it looks like Josh’s journey has just begun!”

-Jennifer Vallens

“I certainly connected with this piece on a personal level. Josh and I followed similar paths over the course of our childhoods by taking advantage of the countless opportunities in American scholastic chess. We now both study at Webster University and competed for our C-team at Panams. Daaim does a great job of documenting Josh’s journey and highlighting the triumphs and obstacles along the way. The words “?Keep him interested” is some of the best advice for the parents of a young chess player. Josh has undoubtedly kept interest!”

-Eric Rosen

“Josh Colas’ rise in U.S. chess is well chronicled by Shabazz who writes engagingly about our nation’s young talents, national and international chess. Josh annotated his masterful victory over GM Jinshi Bai for this article. His annotations are clear, precise and demonstrate awesome technique in what was a difficult endgame to win. ‘Young Josh will be looking to make history of his own,’ writes Shabazz. We agree wholeheartedly!”

-Michael Ciamarra

“This interesting story describes the journey of young Joshua Colas from a sharp 7 year old playing his father to an experienced master battling a Chinese Grandmaster with the IM title at stake. These are true words of wisdom from the talented rising star himself. ‘After earning his GM norm, Josh stated, “My parents constantly remind me that if I work hard and believe in myself, nothing is impossible.”

-Michael Aigner

Thank you judges… hopefully I’ll be writing another article about Josh very soon.

Revisit the article here!!

Here is Josh blitzing with his father (Guy Colas) at the 2006 World Open. This was the year he started playing. He’s all grown up now.

Josh Colas at 2015 World Open in Arlington, Virginia
Photos by Daaim Shabazz


  1. Daaim, thanks again for a great read on Joshua’s chess expedition. He will have an opportunity to earn his last IM norm in two weeks at the famous St Louis Chess Club. Games will be broadcast live, starting Feb 16 at 5:30 ET. His buddy Justus will also be playing for his last norm. It should be interesting. I wish both of them good chess and good luck!

  2. Excellent article Daaim! I must be getting old because Josh has quickly grown up before our eyes. Time certainly flies! Thank you for not only capturing Josh’s chess journey but other wonderful stories as well. The Chess Drum has always been one of my favorite sites and one of the first sites that I go to when I get to work in the morning lol.
    I particularly like the title Josh Colas: His Journey So Far! We all know that there is more to come from this young man. Josh, Guy and the rest of the Colas family keep up the great work!

  3. Thanks Anthony! Wow, it’s been what maybe 10 years since I last saw you. Hope your beautiful daughter is still plying. Yeah ,Josh is still very much focus on his goal and he is at the right place. Feeling blessed!

  4. It’s been awhile! Brianna is doing well. She is majoring in Predictive Analytics but has also expressed serious interest in coming back to chess. I watched her go toe to toe with an expert in blitz a couple of weeks ago. Not bad considering she hasn’t played in several years, so we’ll see! I’ll be at the World Open this year. Hopefully we’ll see you and Josh there!

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