16-year-old Vachier-Lagrave new French Champion

8/27/2007 – Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, born 1990, was one of the youngest chess grandmasters in history, completing his final grandmaster norm at the age of 14. Three years down the road Maxime has just won the French Championship, beating experienced GM Vladislav Tkachiev in the tiebreak. Women's Champion is Silvia Collas. Results, games, pictures and video coverage by Europe Echecs.

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The 82nd French Championships took place in Aix-les-Bains, France, from August 13th to 25th, 2007. Some famous players were missing: Etienne Bacrot, who was busy playing at the Chess Classic in Mainz; Joël Lautier, who has only played in team matches this year; Marie Sebag, who earned her second GM norm in the Nederland last week; Almira Skripchenko, who has had a baby a few months back. GM Bachar Kouatly made a kind of come-back to competition, after one break of seven years, in the B-group, but without great success.

The main Championship ended in a tie between top seed GM Vladislav Tkachiev and 16-year-old Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, both of whom scored 7.5/11 points. The tiebreak of two rapid chess games (15 min + 5 sec per move) ended in a draw, so that the title was decided by two blitz games, both won by Vachier-Lagrave, who thus took the title.


16-year-old French Champion 2007: Maxime Vachier-Lagrave


Vladislav Tkachiev, drew for first, then lost the tiebreak

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, born on October 21st 1990, was one of the youngest chess grandmasters in history, completing his final grandmaster norm at the age of 14 years, 4 months, in 2005. His current rating is 2595, making him the sixth best player in the country, and the 13th bes junior under 20 world wide.

82nd French Championship 2007


The playing venue at the 2007 French Championship


Nataf vs Tkachiev in round one (draw)


Third seed GM Christian Bauer (Elo 2626)


GM Laurent Fressinet, as in Almira Skripchenko-Fressinet


I'm White in this round? GM Jossip Dorfman


Comeback? GM Bachar Kouatly (Elo 2475)

Previous French Champions

1923 Renaud
1924 Crépeaux
1925 Crépeaux
1926 Chéron
1927 Chéron
1928 Gibaud
1929 Chéron
1930 Gibaud
1931 Muffang
1932 Raizman
1933 Gromer
1934 Kahn
1935 Gibaud
1936 Raizman
1937 Gromer
1938 Gromer
1939 Raizman
1940 Gibaud
1941 Crépeaux
1942 Daniel
1943 Bigot
1944 No contest
1945 Boutteville
1946 Raizman
1947 Raizman
1948 Rossolimo
1949 Hugot
1950 Boutteville
1951 Raizman
1952 Raizman
1953 Tartakover
1954 Boutteville
1955 Boutteville
1956 Rolland
1957 Bergraser
1958 Lemoine
1959 Boutteville
1960 No contest
1961 Mazzoni
1962 Thiellement
1963 Thiellement
1964 Roos Michel
1965 Mazzoni
1966 Bergraser
1967 Boutteville
1968 Letzelter
1969 Planté
1970 Macles
1971 Letzelter
1972 Haik
1973 Benoit
1974 Letzelter
1975 Todorcevic
1976 Chevaldonnet
1977 Roos Louis
1978 Giffard
1979 Kouatly
1980 Seret
1981 Seret
1982 Giffard
1983 Haik
1984 Seret
1985 Seret
1986 Miralles
1987 Bernard
1988 Andruet
1989 Miralles
1990 Santo Roman
1991 Santo Roman
1992 Apicella
1993 Bricard
1994 Santo Roman
1995 Prié
1996 Bauer
1997 Vaisser
1998 Dorfman
1999 Bacrot
2000 Bacrot
2001 Bacrot
2002 Bacrot
2003 Bacrot
2004 Lautier
2005 Lautier
2006 Tkachiev

Women's Section

The Women's Section was won jointly by Sophie Milliet and Silvia Collas. In the Rapid Chess tiebreak Silvia Collas won the first game and drew the second to take the title of French Women's Champion 2007.


French Women's Champion 2007: Silvia Collas


Tied for first, lost the tiebreak: top seed Sophie Milliet

French Championship 2007: Women's section


Natacha Benmesbah and Sophie Milliet at work


WFM Mathilde Congiu, rated 2159

Information provided by Dominique Primel, photos by © Europe-Echecs

The B-Section of the French Championship was won by Thal Abergel, a point and a half ahead of the field.

French Championship 2007: Section B

Videos from the French Championship


First blitz game Vachier-Lagrave (white) vs Tkachiev: 1-0


Final blitz game Tkachiev (white) vs Vachier-Lagrave: 0-1


Final playoff game Sophie Milliet (white) vs Silvia Collas: ½-½


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