Tuesday, August 4

Chess Kids, The Next Generation

(Left: Eight years ago, Steven Zierk was ranked as high as #2 in the nation at age 7. Right: Samuel Sevian has been ranked #1 in the nation at both age 7 and 8.)

The latest Silicon Valley Challenge continued one popular trend at Bay Area chess tournaments: the youngest participants stole rating points from adults and even teens! Three young stars (plus one adult master) tied for first place in the Open section: #3 ranked 15-year old FM-elect Steven Zierk, #9 ranked 11-year old Kyle Shin and #1 ranked 8-year old Samuel Sevian. In fact, Steven, who won over $3600 at World Open as a 7-year old prodigy, may now be considered the senior citizen of this group!

Here's just a brief list of upsets in the Open section on Saturday:
  • Kyle (2070) drew 2200 teen
  • Samuel (2055) beat 2250 adult and drew 2300 teen
  • Paul (1831) beat 2050 adult
  • Neel (1726) drew 2100 adult
  • Leland (1560) beat 1700 teen
  • Richard Z (1540) beat 1750 teen and drew 2050 adult
  • Sankash (1517) drew two 1700 teens
  • Richard Y (1465) drew 1750 and 1700 teens
As a coach, I take special pride in watching my students do well. A total of eight of my private students and ten summer class students played! It was a real pleasure meeting everyone face to face, in some cases for the first time. Here are the top results:

Open section
  • Top score (private students) = Steven and Kyle, 3.5 each (1st place!)
  • Most rating gain (private students) = Neel, +34
  • Top score (summer class) = Armaan, 2.0
  • Most rating gain (summer class) = Richard Z, +50
U1600 section
  • Top score (summer class) = Bryan, 4.0 (1st place!)
  • Most rating gain (summer class) = Bryan, +69

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