Scholastic Chess Gateway - The latest news about chess people, organizations and websites

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Pick Your Fantasy Team for the U.S. Men's and Women's Championships!

Info received from Chess Life Online ...

Effective immediately, the 2008 Fantasy Chess Competition, run by Chess Life Online, is now open for registration. Contestants enter 7-player teams (that must have a rating average of 2555 or below) from the Frank Berry U.S. Championship roster, and compete for prizes such as Monroi PCMs and extensions to their USCF memberships.

The contest makes watching the action very exciting for spectators, and we hope to get as many entries as possible. The U.S. Championship begins at 3:30 EST on May 13, so all entries must be received before then.

Here are the rules, as produced by Chess Life Online:

Breaking News: On May 6, GM Dmitry Gurevich replaced Jaan Ehlvest, who dropped out of the tournament for personal reasons. If you have Ehlvest on your fantasy team, you must go in and add a different player OR he will automatically be replaced by the new player. In the event that another player withdraws for unforeseen reason, the same policy will apply: you can still change your team up until May 13, 3:30 EST but if you fail to do so, the player will automatically be replaced at the discretion of the administrators.
In other recent news, Larry Kaufman is the new U.S. Senior Open Champion, while Esther Epstein will replace Rusudan Goletiani, who withdrew for personal reasons. Meanwhile, David Vigorito won the State Champion of Champions event to snag a spot. Since people seemed to really enjoy the contest we ran last year, we hope we can further entertain you with this year's contest.

Here is how it will work this year:

The basics
Once again this contest will be ABSOLUTELY FREE to compete in for any current USCF member. Starting the week of May 5, you can go the following link (bookmark it now!): and pick a seven-player team to compose your "Fantasy Team." The rating cap will be 2555, meaning that the average rating of your seven players must be at most 2555. At the end of this article, you can see the ratings that will be used for the purposes of the contest. Since the Men's and Women's Championship are being held concurrently, your team members can be picked from either Championship. You can even pick it to be seven of the ten women if you wish, but if you plan to do that, be sure to read the details below on how the women's ratings will be changed to make the contest fair.

We have better prizes than ever this year, including two brand new Monroi Personal Chess Managers! Just like last year there will be some tiebreaker questions to help us along should there be any ties. A new feature this year will be the existence of a "daily prize", a book (the full list of books will be announced soon), which will go to the team that has the most improvement from one day to the next. Hence if your team happens to be tanking, and you don't have a realistic chance at one of the main prizes -- don't fret, your team can always have a superb day to win you a daily prize. No one will ever be truly out of contention. The only restriction on the daily prizes will be that each competitor is only permitted to win at most one -- if someone is in place to win a second one, it will then go to the next person in line.

So without further ado (I know this after all is what you all were reading this article and waiting for) these are the main prizes for the contest:

1st Place: Monroi Personal Chess Manager + Board signed by the US Championship participants

2nd Place: Monroi Personal Chess Manager

3rd Place: 2 years extension to your USCF membership (3 years for Young Adult, Youth or Scholastic Members)

4th Place: 1 year extension to your USCF membership ( 2 years if you are a Young Adult, Youth or Scholastic Member)

5th Place: Signed copy of CLO columnist, GM Joel Benjamin's new book, American Grandmaster

Bonus Prize for U.S. Championship participants: U.S. Championship qualifiers are NOT ELIGIBLE for the above prizes. However, CLO is offering a bonus prize for the top U.S. Championship participant who also enters a fantasy team, $100. The only catch is that to redeem your prize, you will need to answer a short CLO survey about your choices, which will be published. This prize requires a minimum of 5 U.S. Championship entrees into the Fantasy League.

Scoring works the same way as last year; however many points a team member of yours scores in their respective tournament is how many points they contribute to your team. Once again, should there be a playoff required to decide the winner of either tournament, the winner of a playoff (in either Championship) will be counted as having scored 0.5 higher for the purposes of this contest.

Women's Rating Changes
The main difference between this year and last year will be a slight alteration to how the rating cap will work. Since the average rating in the Women's Championship is about 2275 while in the Men's it's about 2555, it clearly wouldn't be equitable to effectively treat the tournaments as though they had the same ratings (naturally IM Irina Krush at 2515 is favored to score the highest number of points in her tournament while a 2515 in the Men's tournament -- who would just be in the middle of the pack is naturally expected to score far less). As such, each woman will count as 278 points higher for the purposes of this contest. This change allows both tournaments to effectively have the same overall average rating and should thus give no special advantage to picking someone simply because they happen to be playing in one tournament rather than the other. Here is the list of confirmed players (remember, the Senior Open champ is yet to be added) and their ratings for the purposes of the fantasy competition:

Effective Ratings for Fantasy Chess 2008
Pick seven of the following players, making sure that their average effective ratings are equal to or under 2555.

Irina Krush 2793
Anna Zatonskih 2768
Alex Onischuk 2728
Alex Shabalov 2709
Gregory Kaidanov 2697
Yury Shulman 2676
Varuzhan Akobian 2666
Julio Becerra 2648
Alexander Ivanov 2628
Eugene Perelshteyn 2626
Boris Gulko 2623
Benjamin Finegold 2613
Katerine Rohonyan 2596
Dmitry Gurevich 2594
Sergey Kudrin 2588
Tatev Abrahamyan 2574
Jesse Kraai 2569
Alex Yermonlinsky 2568
Batchimeg Tuvshintugs 2565
Josh Friedel 2539
Tsaagan Battsetseg 2529
John Fedorowicz 2514
Dean Ippolito 2512
David Pruess 2497
Esther Epstein 2472
Iryna Zenyuk 2464
David Vigorito 2439
Daniel Ludwig 2429
Chouchanik Airapetian 2421
Courtney Jamison 2351
Michael Langer 2307
Sam Shankland 2299
Sergey Galant 2176

USCF employees and Organizers are free to enter a team for bragging rights, but they are not eligible for prizes. If you are a life member, you are free to "gift" your USCF Membership to a family member or friend.

So that's basically how it will work and feel free to let us know what you think!

Good luck to everyone who enters this contest once again this year. I hope that it can again provide a little extra competitive spice to everyone who's looking forward to the US Championship like I am!

CLO thanks Monroi for sponsoring the contest, Tim Wang for programming, and Arun Sharma for organizing. Please go to starting the week of May 5 to enter your team.



Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

Entertainment blogs Top Blogs Photarium blog directory Blog Directory - photarium :: Defining Your Blogs Worth: TopSites: