Sponsored by The Devon County Chess Association
More news and reports on junior chess can be seen on www.onionschess.co.uk/content/events-0
The 2013 Devon Megafinal (part of the UK Chess
Challenge) was held at Churston Grammar School, Brixham,
on Saturday 15th June. The top players of each sex in
each age group, and anyone scoring 4/6 points, can go on
to play in the Gigafinal, to be held in Reading on
Sunday 7th July.
The Last Chance Saloon tournament was held at Exeter on
Mon 4th May as a qualifying event for next round of the
UK Chess Challenge, the Devon Megafinal.
Qualifying on 15/21 points: Tom Ferdinand, Jim Knott,
William Rutland, Reece Whittington.
Riviera International Centre, Torquay 28th July – 10th August 2013
The Devon County Chess Association, as the host county for this year’s British Championships, is keen to encourage local junior players to enter for the Junior Championships which take place during the Congress. There are separate championships for each age group from Under 8 (born 2005 or later) to Under 16 (born 1997 or later). Each specific age group tournament (except the Under 8 and Under 9 tournaments ) takes place over either the first or the second week of the congress. The Under 8 tournament takes place over one day (Friday 2nd August) and the Under 9 tournament over the weekend of the 3rd-4th August). Full details of dates and timings are accessible on the congress website (www.BritishChessChampionships.co.uk).
The Devon County Chess Association is offering 8 bursaries of £25 as a contribution towards the cost of entry fees for the tournaments.
Any junior wishing to apply for one of these bursaries should write a short letter of application giving details of age and tournament entered together with a brief outline of his/her recent chess career. This letter should be sent to the DCCA Acting Secretary, TREFOR THYNNE, at: 54 Silverwood Avenue, Newton Abbot, Devon TQ12 4LG no later than the 31st May.
It is not sufficiently widely known within Devon chess circles that the DCCA runs one of its team competitions as a junior league: the BLOODWORTH SHIELD appropriately named after one of the great stalwarts of Devon and Westcountry chess Ken Bloodworth who died at the age of 96 a year or so ago.
Ken did an enormous amount of work for junior chess at local, regional and national levels and it is entirely appropriate for one of Devon’s team competitions to bear his name.
This competition is for junior teams of 4 players with a maximum individual grade under 135. Typically in recent years the age range of players has been 9-14 so that it has become seen as an ideal division for the younger juniors who are getting their first taste of league chess. Matches are played with a time limit of 30 moves in 1 hour plus 15 minutes QPF so that match duration is 2 ½ hours.
The current holders are Torquay Boys’ Grammar School who won the division in 2011 and 2012. This year (2012-13) there will be a different name on the shield as TBGS have lost 2 of their three matches). The competing teams are: Exeter Juniors, Torquay Boys’ Grammar School, Broadclyst Primary School and Newton Abbot Juniors who play one match against each of the other teams.
The matches in recent seasons have all been well-contested and close with no one team dominating. It would be even better if new teams were to join next year. Teams from junior sections of local clubs or teams from schools are equally qualified to enter. The Bloodworth Shield offers an ideal way of introducing promising younger Devon juniors to the pleasures of competitive league chess.
ANYONE READY FOR A MATCH?
Babbacombe All Saints Primary School have an enthusiastic chess club of some two dozen members and would like to play matches against teams from other primary schools or youth organisations. Please contact Graham Ross Andrews (Telephone 07903 375 021) for details.
TREFOR THYNNE LOOKS AHEAD AT FORTHCOMING JUNIOR EVENTS
What’s coming up in 2013 for junior chess players in Devon?
In many schools January is the time when the UK CHESS CHALLENGE gets under way. For those unfamiliar with this, it claims to be the world’s biggest chess tournament with over 30,000 entrants and is the brainchild of UK chess master Michael Basman who, very appropriately, lives in Chessington, Surrey. The tournament is run in four stages:
Stage 1: Seven-round Swiss tournaments held within individual schools. These are always popular as competitors can win small prizes for achieving certain points totals. The top scoring players qualify for:
Stage 2 – the county MEGAFINAL: this is held in early summer usually at Churston G.S. From this the winners in various age-groups can aim to qualify for:
Stage 3 – the Regional GIGAFINAL: usually there are two of these held in mid-summer – one for the North and one for the South. From these the winners in the age groups qualify for:
Stage 4 – the National TERAFINAL: held in London in late August and featuring winners and runners-up from the GIGAFINALS.
In 2012 Devon had a representative in the TERAFINAL: 14 year-old John Fraser of Torquay Boys’ Grammar School and Newton Abbot Chess Club.
One of the features of the tournament is the scoring system: 3 points for a win, 2 for a draw, 1 for a loss (and 0 for a default) as used in the LONDON CHESS CLASSIC.
The UK CHESS CHALLENGE has introduced chess into many schools where it was previously not played. It can be run very easily by one adult using the instructional guidelines even if he or she has no previous experience of chess organisation.
WEST OF ENGLAND JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIPS: held in Swindon 16-17th February 2013: a strong and important tournament for ambitious juniors and a good way to get noticed by organisers on a national level. Details are available on the CHESSDEVON website (www.chessdevon.co.uk).
Devon County Chess Association JUNIOR DIVISION (BLOODWORTH SHIELD)
It is not known sufficiently widely that the DCCA runs a team competition for juniors. Teams are of 4 players with a maximum individual grade of 135. The current holders are Torquay Boys’ Grammar School and for 2012-13 there are 4 teams competing: TBGS, Newton Abbot Chess Club, Exeter Juniors and Broadclyst Primary School. In recent years teams have tended to be between the ages of 11 and 14 though technically it is an under 18 event.
Any club or school with small nucleus of keen players might wish to consider entering for 2013-14. Matches can be arranged at any time and are usually played on a time-limit of one hour per player.
BRITISH CHESS CHAMPIONSHIPS 2013: TORQUAY 28th July- 10th August 2013
Devon’s juniors have a wonderful opportunity this summer to compete in the relevant age-group national championship. Each tournament lasts one week though it is possible to play for 2 weeks by entering for instance both the under 12 and under 13 events or the under 10 and under 11 tournaments. Full details can be found on the English Chess Federation website (www.englishchess.org.uk). Ambitious Devon juniors are strongly encouraged to plan their summer around this congress!
T.F.Thynne December 2012