19th Voronezh International Chess festival Print
Thursday, 02 July 2015 08:37

19th Voronezh International Chess festival (10.06-21.06.2015)

When writing about regular events it is rather difficult to avoid using the same templates. Moreover, the Voronezh chess festival director GM Alexander Raetsky used to say: «This year we organize an ordinary festival like any previous one. Next year the twentieth festival will be something special!» But really the 19th festival was also interesting and remarkable, sometimes similar to its predecessors, sometimes not.

First of all, this year the Russian High League championship is being held in the European part of Russia and doesn't overlap with any Russian Cup stages. It allowed Voronezh organizers to invite several grandmasters who are now playing in Kaliningrad. Maybe, the Master Open start list did not include so many high-rated players as five or six years before, but it included a lot of this year Russia champions! Rapid champion GM Pavel Ponkratov, blitz champion GM Dmitry Bocharov, champion team members Bocharov, GM Dmitry Kokarev and GM Pavel Ponkratov, Under 21 champion GM Ivan Bukavshin, young champions of different ages in classic, rapid, blitz and team chess (IM Saveliy Golubov, FM Andrey Esipenko, FM Semen Lomasov, Stefan Pogosyan, Alexandra Malsevskaya, WFM Polina Shuvalova, WFM Alexandra Obolentseva) and senior team blitz champion Vladimir Kachar. Some other young Russia champions were registered for participation but didn't manage to come to Voronezh, we hope that they will come next year.

(GM Ivan Bukavshin; GM Dmitry Bocharov; WFM Alexandra Maltsevskaya)

There were not as many players from far countries this year as in 2014 when the members of Mexico, Mongolia and Australia olympic teams come to Voronezh. But players of ex-Soviet countries have traditionally visited our festival (they represented mostly Ukraine, Belarus and Armenia this time because of terms of the Asia Zonal tournament).

The usual festival program was slightly corrected to make the Master Open terms (June 12-20 this year) more convenient for Russian High League participants. There were no free day in Master Open (usually one free day) but one free day in FIDE Open (usually no free day) and the blitz tournament was held in the morning of the FIDE Open free day (usually in the evening of the Master Open free day).

Voronezh chess club has 15 boards for game broadcasting now and a separate hall was organized for all these boards. The leaders were playing in this hall with improved air conditioning.

The details of the first two days of the festival were already described on the FIDE site: http://www.fide.com/component/content/article/4-tournaments/8817-xix-voronezh-chess-festival.html. So some words now about classical and blitz tournaments.

130 players from 9 countries participated in the Master open tournament (27 GM, 24 IM, 1 WGM, 2 WIM, 21 FM, 10 WFM). Participation of 24 foreign players provided automatic international title norms.


A lot of players in the Master Open managed to come back into fight after a bad start. The total winner GM Daniil Lintchevski (RUS, Gatchina) won 7 games in a row after a loss in the first round. GM Konstantin Tarlev (UKR, Kharkiv) won 6 games in a row after two losses and a draw. WFM Polina Shuvalova (RUS, Moscow) won 5 games in a row after 4 losses.


The Master Open awarding ceremony was held in the conference hall of the Degas hotel (because the chess club halls were being occupied by FIDE Open players). Master Open winners: GM Adam Tukhaev (UKR, Simferopol) 2nd, GM Daniil Linthevski 1st, GM Boris Savchenko (RUS, Krasnodar) 3rd.

IM Bogdan Belyakov (RUS, Salekhard) received the GM norm certificate. FM Dmitry Rodin (RUS, Voronezh) achieved the IM norm.


There are other players who achieved IM norms. WFM Monnisha (IND, Chennai) also achieved the WGM norm. FM Semen Lomasov outplayed the highest rated GM Ivan Bukavshin in the first round.


FM Ivan Provotorov (RUS, Voronezh) achieved his first IM norm in Voronezh Master Open 2008 and this time he has had a norm after 7 games of 9. Temirlan Baltabaev (RUS, Naberezhnye Chelny) does not have a title yet but here he played all the games against opponents having titles.

124 players from 6 countries with FIDE Elo < 2200 participated in the second festival event – FIDE Open tournament (3 FM, 1 WFM, 1 CM). A great lot of Russian regions were presented there.


FIDE Open winners: FM Denis Palkovich (UKR, Lugansk) 2nd, Dashgyn Ibadov (RUS, Chita) 1st, Vladimir Provkin (RUS, Voronezh) 3rd. 13-years-old WFM Anna Kochukova (RUS, Borisoglebsk) won the first women prize, she is on the photo with her coach Sergey Surov who acted on the festival as a referee and also successfully participated in the Blitz tournament.


IM Maxim Chetverik saw Carlsen and Caruana playing when they were children; now Maxim is impressed by games of 10-years-old CM Andrey Tsvetkov (RUS, Moscow) who has got the 10th prize. 76-years-old FM Anatolij Kasantsev (RUS, Lipetsk) participated in Voronezh festivals more times than any other non-local player; he won the 1st senior prize.


Ashid Tsetsegulzii (Mongolia) visited Russia for the first time. After starting badly, he managed then to obtain 5 points in 9 games. Elmar Gasimov (Azerbaijan) has liked Voronezh so much that he is staying here now for a while playing in local tournaments.


“Sail of Hope” tournament for peoples with disabilities was held for 4th time this year, there were 24 participants in it, they represented 8 regions of Russia and there was one player from Ukraine. Organizers consider this tournament as an important part of the festival and a significant social project. Evgeny Suslov (RUS, Ivanovo) is the winner for 3rd time in a row.

The blitz tournament was held June 17. It did not attract as much Master Open participants as usually because there were no free days in Master Open. Nevertheless, there was a very interesting fight for the prizes of this tournament (98 players from 7 countries, 7 GM, 8 IM). GM Gevorg Harutjunyan (ARM, Erevan) won the tournament on tie-break with 8 points of 9 games. GM Boris Savchenko became the 2nd, he won prizes in four festival tournaments (Chess960, Rapid, Blitz, Master Open).


(GM Gevorg Harutjunyan; GM Boris Savchenko)

13-years-old FM Andrey Esipenko (RUS, Tyumen) won the third prize in the Blitz tournament. IM Sergey Chekhov is the strongest Voronezh player now, he won the first prize for local players in Master Open.


A well-known Russian coach IA Andrey Beletsky (Kostroma) visited Voronezh to see talent juniors playing. GM Igor Glek (GER) organizes a lot of events in Moscow; he likes to visit Voronezh and no participated in the Rapid tournament. GM Andrey Deviatkin (Moscow) participated in Chess960 tournament only and described the tournament on http://www.chess-news.ru site.


Finally, about the peoples who make the chess festival. Alexander Raetsky is the permanent tournament director and the organizers team leader, author of the festival idea and its implementation. Dr. Sergey Rudakov is the President of Voronezh Region Chess federation and a local Communist party leader; his son Sergey played in FIDE Open.


Sergey Fomin “is a key player in festival team” according to TD Alexander Raetsky. He makes all tournament pairings, prepares tables and bulletins, and controls game broadcasting. On the photo: Sergey places the current round pairing on the club building wall for players waiting outside. IM Maxim Chetverik is Alexander Raetsky’s “alter ego”, co-author, assistant and sometimes opponent. He prepares the start lists, all-year festival participants lists, comments selected tournament games, etc. On the photo Maxim is playing blitz.


IM Sergey Sergienko (right) acted on many Voronezh festival as an accommodation assistant; Pavel Sirotin (left) now replaced him in this role. Both of them were referees in FIDE Open, Sergey also played in Master Open. WGM Irina Semenova was a referee in Master Open and played in Rapid tournament. Among the other festival people who are to be necessarily mentioned: Sail of Hope main referee FM Sergey Kislov, Master open referee WIM Nadezhda Ilchenko (Volgograd), festival press officer Elena Ponomareva, movie producer Alexander Shushenkov.

Thanks to all participants, organizers and spectators!

Come to Voronezh the next year and participate in the 20th festival!

Festival website http://vrnchessfestival.org/en

Media: press@fide.com
General inquiries: office@fide.com

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