A 4-year old prodigy in Chicago?

Chess is booming the great metropolis known as the "Windy City."  The scholastic program is thriving because many tireless organizations working to promote chess. One of these organizations is called "Chicago Chess Kids Club" on the Northwest side of the city. Milan Mitrovic, who coaches at the 47-member club, can bear a smile these days since one of his players was the subject of a recent news story.

Jayel Taylor, a 4-year old chess player from Justice, IL (just outside of Chicago), was highlighted in an article in the February 19th Daily Southtown for his chess success. The young preschooler was first exposed to chess at the age of two as he sat on his father's lap to watch him play.  After learning the moves from his father Freddie, Jayel began to take a liking to chess. Jayel's mother Krystal Taylor fondly recalls,  "Then one day we noticed he set up the board. He knew one set of colors was on one side and the other set was on the other."

His parents are heavily involved in his chess activities as they commute every Saturday into Chicago for chess club meetings. Will Jayel be a threat to
GM Sergey Karjakin's record for earning the Grandmaster title (12 years, 7 months) or even GM Hikaru Nakamura's record of becoming a U.S. National Master (10 years, 79 days)? Perhaps it is too early to tell, but Mitrovic seems to believe that if young Jayel continues, a bright future awaits.

Best wishes Jayel!!

Read Mokneque Clark's "Child's Play," Daily Southtown, 19 February 2004.

The "Chicago Chess Kids Club" meets every Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Edgebrook Branch Library, 5331 W. Devon. A separate club for teens and adults meets every Monday from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Posted by The Chess Drum: 24 February 2004