41st Chess Olympiad to be staged in – Tromsø!

by ChessBase
10/2/2010 – On its last working day the FIDE General Assembly took a decision on the venue of the 41st World Chess Olympiad in 2014. There were two cities bidding to host the event – Albena in Bulgaria and Tromsø in Norway. The bidding procedure lasted several days, in the end the Norwegians won by a 95-47 vote margin. We have reported extensively on Tromsø – here's a summary.

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Norway to host the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014

The Chess Olympiad is a biennal tournament to determine the best five-player open and women’s teams in the world. The World Chess Federation FIDE organizes the event, selecting the host nation based on a bidding process. The next Olympiad, 2012, will be in Istanbul, Turkey, the 2014 Olympiad in Tromsø, Norway.

The Norwegian majority government demonstrated its support for the Olympiad by pledging financial backing of NOK 70 million (€ 8,8 million), with a total budget of NOK 119.3 million (€ 15) which will be financed through a combination of governmental support, regional funding and marketing income.

An organizing committee with Olympic and chess expertise has been in place since the start of the bidding: Henrik Andenæs, a business professional and former managing director of the Lillehammer Olympic Organizing Committee (17th Winter Olympics 1994) is chairman, Norwegian Chess Federation President Jøran Aulin-Jansson vice-chairman, and attorney at law Morten Sand, a former FIDE Vice President and legal advisor, is the company’s international counsel.

“Being elected the host of the Chess Olympiad in 2014 is a major ambition for our city”, Tromsø mayor Arild Hausberg has said. “We promise the chess world a unique experience combining expert and experienced organizing skills in a friendly and exciting environment. If we win the bid, we guarantee a memorable event that will please both participants and the local population. A comprehensive cultural program will be an integrated part of a Chess Olympiad in the City of Tromsø,” the mayor concludes.

Europe Echecs report on the Tromsø decision

Click on the "Tromso 2014" report on the index on the right

View Larger Map – zoom, pan, and choose map style.
The city of Tromsø lies in the northern-most region of Norway, 69° 40' 33" N, 18° 55' 10" E,
almost 400 km inside the Arctic Circle

With 75,000 inhabitants Tromsø has all the amenities of “a small large city”. Tromsø has a relatively mild climate, and is just a three-hour flight away from London and Frankfurt, and less than two hours by air from the Norwegian capital, Oslo. Tromsø has a very active chess community and hosts an annual international festival, the Arctic Chess Challenge, in August every year.

The island city of Tromsø as seen in Google Earth...

   ... and from the top of the mountains surrounding the city

Budget for the World Cup

    Income NOK US$
    Sponsor 4 000 000 666 667
    Public support 2 000 000 333 333
    Support from region 6 000 000 1 000 000
    Ticket sale 140 000 23 333
    Total income 12 140 000 2 023 333
    Prize fund 7 600 000 1 266 667
    FIDE 1 920 000 320 000
    Stipends 360 000 60 000
    Accomondations 1 050 000 175 000
    Rental of playing hall 400 000 66 667
    Live transmission 200 000 33 333
    Sponsor events 100 000 16 667
    Miscellaneous 200 000 33 333
    Allocations for uncertanties 250 000 41 667
    Total costs 12 080 000 2 013 333
    Results 60 000 10 000

The Bulgarian Varna bid

A rival bid for the 2014 Olympiad was submitted by the Black Sea resort Albena, where the huge playing hall is under construction. Albena, which was built on empty ground in the 1960s, is situated 30 km from Varna and is served by the international airport there.

View Larger Map

The Black Sea resort of Albena in northeastern Bulgaria [Photo: Boby Dimitrov]

Previous ChessBase reports on Tromsø

Arctic Chess Challenge 2010: Kobalia clinches it
08.08.2010 – The Arctic Chess Challenge, an open held in the Norwegian city, Tromsø, brought 164 players from all corners of the world, of which 25 GMs. The event was led by Loek van Wely until the last round, when Mikhail Kobalia clinched it with a dramatic last-round victory. Mexican champion Manuel Leon Hoyos came in second on tie-break. Øystein Brekke reports.

Asian Senior and Amateur Championships in Beirut
11.06.2010 – The event is taking place on June 4-14 2010. It was opened with pageantry and politics, with a spectacular Arabic dance number and with Morten Sand campaigning for the Norwegian city of Tromsø to stage the 2014 Chess Olympiad. International dignitaries, including FIDE Presidential candidate Anatoly Karpov, were informed. Pictures and videos by our colleagues at Europe Echecs.

Arctic Chess Challenge 2010 in August
09.06.2010 – We have told you a number of times before, with great sincerity and enthusiasm: go play in the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø, well within the Arctic Circle in northern Norway. There are many strong players and plenty of opportunities to make title norms. There is also a landscape to dream of, and social activities to make it a great summer adventure. Here is all the information you will need.

Chess professional vs soccer star in Tromsø
04.06.2010 – Last weekend more than 200 people from the Sports Board and athletic federations in Norway met in Tromsø, Norway, to discuss sporting issues. To kick things off the world's highest ranked player, Magnus Carlsen, played an exhibition game – two minutes vs five minutes – against Norwegian soccer star Sigurd Rushfeldt. The event was carried on national TV.

Norway, Albena submit Olympiad bids
03.05.2010 – The bids to host the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014 were due on April 30, 2010. One came from the Arctic Circle town of Tromsø and carries a government guarantee of NOK 70 million (US $12 million). The other was a last-minute bid by the Bulgarian Chess Federation for the Black Sea town of Albena. Our report includes an interview with Morten Sand, international FIDE advisor. Who will win?

Norway provides US $12 million for Olympiad bid
23.12.2009 – Good news. Boosted by the world number one place of Magnus Carlsen, the Government of Norway has just released the sum of NOK 70 million ($12 million) to support the bid of Tromsø, an island city in the Arctic Circle, to host the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014. It would be a great place for chess players to go, as we have shown in many past reports. Today we add to these with a whale of a story.

Interview with Monika Socko, winner of the Arctic Challenge
20.08.2009 – Grandmaster Monika Socko is from Poland, married to Polish GM Bartoz Socko, who is two hundred points higher than her on the FIDE scale. Still, Monika finished first in the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø, with 7.0/9 and a rating performance of 2639, while her husband came 13th, a full point behind her. Son Szymon also played. Misha Savinov spoke to the winner.

How young Ray made his first GM norm
13.08.2009 The Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø ended last Sunday, with four players sharing the top score of 7.0/9 points. One of them, a 14-year-old lad, stood to make a GM norm. But to do so Ray Robson had to hold the Swedish Champion GM Emanuel Berg to a draw in the final round, with the black pieces. To compound matters Berg was desperate to win. Pictorial report by Misha Savinov.

Tromsø 2009 – Socko, Petrov and Robson lead
08.08.2009 – Make no mistake, it is GM Monika Socko, not her top-rated husband Bartosz, who is leading the Arctic Challenge with 6.0/7 and a 2703 performance. No less sensational is that 14-year-old IM Ray Robson is sharing first with a 2679 performance. The action is exciting ("hammer time") and the landscape lovely in the land of the midnight sun. Big illustrated report by Misha Savinov.

Tromsø 2009 – four lead in Arctic Chess Challenge
06.08.2009 – At the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø 120 players are competing in the year’s most prestigious Norwegian event. After five of nine rounds there are four players in the lead. Three are GMs, one a female, but the fourth is of particular interest: 14-year-old US American IM Ray Robson, whom some people are calling the new Bobby Fischer. Pictorial report by IM Torstein Bae.

Tromsø 2009 – the Arctic Chess Challenge
02.08.2009 The Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø is this year’s most prestigious event in Norway. More than 35 titled players are taking part, including 13 GMs. Top seed is Polish GM Bartosz Socko, rated 2656, with three more super-GMs just below him. The tournament is truly an international open: the 118 participants hail from 26 countries, and from all parts of the world. Pictorial report.

Tromsø 2009 – the Arctic Chess Challenge
22.07.2009 – The city of Tromsø, located within the Arctic Circle in Norway, has become a hot-bed of chess. Not only is Tromsø bidding for the Chess Olympiad 2014 – every year they stage a very attractive chess tournament in this beautiful location. This year the Arctic Challenge will be staged from August 1st to 9th, with 132 entries and lots of title holders – an ideal opportunity to make norms.

Tromsø – a Chess Olympiad in the midnight sun?
18.11.2008 – It lies well within the Arctic Circle and has a history of chess activity. Now the city of Tromsø is bidding to host the 2014 Chess Olympiad in one of the most attractive regions of Europe. A full presentation is being made at the Olympiad in Dresden. We visited the city this summer and support their bid with some WYSIWYG evidence of why it is ideally suited for an Olympiad. Photo report.

Chess in the Arctic Circle – GM Igor Kurnosov triumphs
18.08.2008 – For the third time the Tromsø Chess Club staged an International Open in the Arctic Circle. It ran from August 2nd to 10th 2008, with sky high prizes, by Norwegian standards (total prize fund 11,000 Euros). The venue is spectacular, the atmosphere warm and generous. And the place is full of Carlsens: Magnus, Henrik, Sigrun, Ellen, Ingrid and Signe. Part one of our big pictorial report.

Moiseenko wins the Arctic Chess Challenge
12.08.2007 – In the end it was a super-GM who took the unshared first place in the Tromsø Midnight Sun tournament: Alexander Moiseenko of the Ukraine scored 7.5/9 to overtake the long-time leader, "Mr Sunshine" Kjetil Lie, who had beaten him in round four. Top seed Magnus Carlsen recovered from a poor start to share 2-4. Like his parents we expect Magnus to scale the Store Blåmannen.

Carlsen vs Carlsen – Magnus beats his dad
10.08.2007 – That is hardly a surprise, since the 16-year-old is over six hundred points stronger than his first teacher. But then again Henrik Carlsen has grounding powers... After seven rounds of the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø it is Norwegian GM Kjetil A. Lie who is in the lead, with 5.5 points, followed by four players with 5.0 points each. Report with pictures and videos.

Second Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø
07.08.2007 – The Norwegian island town of Tromsø lies well within the Arctic Circle, which means that this time of the year the sun never sets. Tromsø is playing host to a strong GM tournament from August 4th-12th, 2007. Top seed is Magnus Carlsen, who rushed in from his victory in Biel and did not have a great start here (3.0/4, place ten). Two other GMs, Macieja and Lie, lead with 4.0/4. Round four report.

Shipov wins Midnight Sun, Carlsen second
03.07.2006 – The Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø, Norway, was won by Russian GM Sergei Shipov, who scored 7.5 points in nine rounds. Second was fifteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen with 7.0, who beat Leif Erland Johannessen on tiebreak points. We bring you a final report with pictures from Whale's Island.

Carlsen leads the Midnight Sun Challenge
28.06.2006 – A fifteen-year-old super-grandmaster, blessed with an Elo of 2646, is leading the Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø. Magnus Carlsen of Norway looks set to break a few new records with the form that he is showing these days. The event is being held well within the Arctic Circle, where at this time of year the nights are bright as day. Misha Savinov reports.

Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø
26.06.2006 – There are parts in the world where, during a certain period of the year, the sun never sets. The northern Norwegian town of Tromsø, which lies well within the Arctic Circle, is one such place. From June 24th to July 2nd, in the middle of the midnight sun period, it is holding chess festival with GMs like Krasenkow and Magnus Carlsen. Big illustrated report.

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