U.S. Champ takes Chicago Open crown

The Chicago Open is traditionally held on Memorial Day weekend in the suburban enclave of Oakbrook, Illinois… approximately 15--20 minute drive from downtown Chicago. Over 700 players entered in seven sections. This year's competition had the usual heavy hitters with the Open section being lead by top seeds GMs Gregory Kaidanov (2743 USCF) and Jaan Ehlvest (2705 USCF). Neither player was able to dominate the field leaving the door wide open for a number of fellow Grandmasters.

Current U.S. Champion GM Alexander Shabalov would claim clear 1st with 6-1 including a key win over Kaidanov in the penultimate 6th round. The 15-year old Canadian IM Mark Bluvshtein had a solid showing at 5-2, but lost to Shabalov for the title. Both GM Nikola Mitkov (Macedonia) and GM Alexander Stripunsky agreed to a draw after 1.e4 e5 and tied with four others for joint second with 5½ points. Others with 5½ (and last round result) were: Ehlvest (beating GM Alexander Wojtkiewicz) , GM Alexander Goldin (beating IM Jorge Sammour-Hasbun), IM Benjamin Finegold (beating FM Gregory Markzon), and IM Nazar Firman of the Ukraine (beating GM Hikaru Nakamura). GMs Yuri Shulman and IM Eugene Perelshteyn qualified for the 2004 U.S. Championship with 5 points.

The Chess Drum, "12-year old Kayin Barclay shines at the Chicago Open!" 29 May 2003.

Standings (all sections)

Photo Gallery

Posted by The Chess Drum: 29 May 2003