The USA Championships have begun in St. Louis with a unusual format, which is new to 2011 and highly original.
The champion Gata Kamsky is the favorite this year in the absence of US No.1 Hikaru Nakamura.
The presence of 50-year-old Yasser Seirawan, who rarely plays these days, will add some spice to the pot.
Round Robin 1:
The average Rating of this pool is 2578.75.
Round Robin 2:
Here the average rating is 2579.5.
Here is a summary of the events so far.
Round 1, Group A:
Round 2, Group A:
Points tally in Group A:
Round 1, Group B:
Round 2, Group B:
Points tally in Group B:
Here are a few general details, noting of course the relatively generous prize fund:
Plus $2,000 to the winner of each round robin.
Those who don't get to the Semi-finals won't go home empty handed either.
There will also be $5,000 for Best Game Prizes throughout both Championships.
There will be play-offs in the Semifinals and final. Two rapid games (25 mins + 5 second increment). If necessary the game will go to a rapid Armageddon game, where one player gets 45 minutes and the other less but a choice of colour.
The 2011 U.S. Women's Championship also has a new format. A preliminary round robin stage of eight players, with four qualifying for the knock-out stage. The semi-finals and finals will consist of two game matches. The Prize Fund.
Plus $1,000 to the winner, $600 for second place and $400 for third place in the round robin.
For more information: http://saintlouischessclub.org/2011-us-championships/
To watch the game live: http://saintlouischessclub.org/live