There is almost no time to do nothing here in Reykjavik…..because of all the fun! When we are not playing the tournament or watching/following/commenting we are doing some fun side events.
On Friday we had the 5th edition of the Pub Quiz. This year the questions were very hard and the winners were chess journalists Ian Rogers and Peter Doggers with 26/30 which was quite an impressive score.
The questions from FM Sigurbjorn Bjornsson were as usually very diverse and included asking which opening was called the Sodium? (hint was the Sodium is Na in the Periodic table) Also where was Bobby Fischer born was one of the questions.
The dynamic Icelandic duo of Jon “Blue Puffin” Jonsson and Ingvar Johannesson retained it’s top honors as best Icelandic team. The team is nicknamed “Fist Pump” by many because of the traditional celebration after getting a questions correct.
Yesterday on Saturday we had an interesting blitz tournament. The tournament was given the nickname “Even Steven” because of the time odds system. Basically for every 100 rating poins the gap increases two minutes. So 0-100 play 5 minutes each with 1 second increment. But if it’s over 100 it was 6+1 sec vs 4+1 sec. With the rating gap going over 400 we had 9 mins + 1 sec vs 1 min + 1 sec.
Almost all the games in the 1st round had the 9 vs 1 so there was a lot of clock banging in the first round. As expected the internet blitz specialist Yaacov Norowitz came out victorious. He had stiff competion from Hambleton and GM Baseem. Others close to the top were tournament staff Omar Salama (arbiter) and Ingvar Johannesson (website/commentary). Mr. Norowitz announces his surprise that he had to brake a sweat to beat tournament organisers which he said barely can move the pieces in the States at times!
This is just news of the evening events so far! In the mornings there have been repeated seminars for young children and even special classes for girls which have been well received. The classes have been taught by local girls as well as help from players such as Lisa Orlova.
Also there was a special children blitz tournament for local kids in which 8 players had qualified well before the tournament. It was won by the improving David Kolka who turns 13 this year.
The show goes on tonight with the 3rd annual Soccer match which is Iceland (players+organisers) VS Rest of the World.
Players registered include GM’s Vachier-Lagrave, GM Maze and GM Socko just to name a few.