Aeroflot Open – Invitations, regulations, events and prizes

by ChessBase
11/21/2011 – The Aeroflot Open Chess Festival, one of the most popular tournaments in the world, will be held in from February 6 to 17, 2012 in a new venue: the Hotel Cosmos, one of the largest in Moscow, located in a beautiful park area 20 travelling minutes from Red Square. The total prize fund is 150,000 Euros, and it includes qualification places for the Dortmund Super Tournament. You can register now.

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Information and Regulations of the International Chess Open Festival
"AEROFLOT OPEN 2012" and the Blitz Tournament.

General information of the festival

The Aeroflot Open Chess Festival, which is popular throughout the world, will be held in Moscow from 6th February (the date of arrival) to 17th February 2012 (the date of departure) for the eleventh time running. This major event is open to chess players of most varied qualification: from unrated to very high ratings. As usual the festival will take place “under the wings” of our leading airline company, Aeroflot Russian Airlines.

Moscow in the winter, and the location of the Aeroflot Open...

Three Open Tournaments (A, B and C), each a nine round Swiss, are made up according to the rating of the participants. Naturally, the greatest interest is aroused by A tournament, requiring from a participant a rating above 2550 and usually boasting a number of extra class players. In addition to the Open Tournaments, a Blitz Tournament will be held within the festival. This time the festival has the guaranteed prize fund amounting to EUR 150,000 (including prizes for the Blitz Tournament). The Organizers of the Festival are the "Aeroflot-Russian Airlines", the Association of Chess Federations and the Russian Chess Federation.

For the first time the festival will be held in the Cosmos Hotel (above), which is one of the largest in Moscow with over 1700 rooms. The hotel is located in one of the most beautiful and environmentally pure Moscow districts, within 20 travelling minutes from Red Square and only a 200m walk from the nearest subway station. Here are some more pictures:

Rooms in the hotel start at around 95 Euros or US $130 for a Standard Twin Room: bedroom with two beds, armchair, wardrobe, desk, telephone, TV (International and Russian satellite channels) and Internet access facility. You can check the room in this 3D-view.

Tournament A: for chess players with a FIDE rating higher than 2549 (total €67,000)

1st Prize 20,000
2nd Prize 10,000
3rd Prize 7,000
4th Prize 4,000
5th Prize 3,000
6-10th Prizes 5x1,700 = 8,500
11-15th Prizes 5x1,200 = 6,000
16-20th Prizes 5x700 = 3,500
21-30th Prizes 10x500 = 5,000

The winner of the A tournament will be entitled to participate in the round-robin Super Tournament in Dortmund in the second half of July 2012.

Tournament B: for players with a FIDE rating less than 2550, but higher than 2299 (total €37,500)
Tournament C: for players with a FIDE rating less than 2300 or without rating (total €18,000)

Prizes Tournament B Tournament C
1st Prize 10,000 3,500
2nd Prize 6,000 2,300
3rd Prize 3,500 1,500
4th Prize 2,000 1,000
5th Prize 1,500 700
6-10th Prizes 5x850 = 4,250 5x500 = 2,500
11-15th Prizes 5x550 = 2,750 5x400 = 2,000
16-25th Prizes 10x450 = 4,500 5x250 = 2,500
26-35th Prizes 10x300 = 3,000 10x200 = 2,000

In exceptional cases the Organising Committee has the right to permit a chess player to play in a higher rated tournament than his/her FIDE rating indicates. In case of a tie of two or more participants, the prizes are divided according to the Hort system. The number of prizes in each tournament does not exceed that indicated above in the tables.

Tiebreak systems

For tournament A and B:

  1. The number of games played with Black. Byes and forfeited games will be considered as games played with White.
  2. The average of the opponents' ratings minus the highest and the lowest rating.

For Tournament C:

  1. The Buchholz score

Explication of the Hort System for the prize distribution

In cases of a tie of two or more participants will be divided according to the Hort system. The following example will explain this system: Suppose four players share the same place, and the four prizes are as follows: 1st EUR 10,000, 2nd EUR 8,000, 3rd EUR 6,000, 4th EUR 4,000. We have to split the amount of EUR 28,000. We split it into two equal parts of EUR 14,000 each. The first part will be split equally. Each of the players receives EUR 3,500. The second part will be split according to the ranking after tiebreak.

#1 receives 3,500 + 5,000 = 8,500
#2 receives 3,500 + 4,000 = 7,500
#3 receives 3,500 + 3,000 = 6,500
#4 receives 3,500 + 2,000 = 5,500

Special Prizes

There will also be special prizes for the best performance among seniors, women and juniors in all tournaments amounting to EUR 2,500 in total. There will also be a prize for the best result shown by an unrated player in section C. Only one prize can be awarded to a player (the highest one).

The exact distribution of the special prizes will be announced after the second round of the tournament, when the numbers of seniors, women and juniors and the ratings of these players are known. Attention is called to the fact that for such prizes to be awarded there should be at least 3 players in each of the above categories.

Seniors, Juniors and Women

A player will be considered a Senior if he was born before 01-01-1952.
A player will be considered a Junior if he was born after 31-12-1993.
Girls born before 31-12-1993 will be considered as Women players.

Time control

Tournament A and B: 100 minutes for the first 40 moves, 50 minutes for the next 20 moves and 15 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move, starting from the first.
Tournament C: 90 minutes for the whole game with an increment of 30 seconds per move from move 1.

Festival schedule

  Tournaments A, B Tournament C
Arrival and Registration of the Players Feb. 6 Feb.6
Opening Ceremony Feb. 6: 21.00 Feb. 6: 21.00
Round 1 Feb. 7: 15.00 Feb. 7: 9.30
Round 2 Feb. 8: 15.00 Feb. 8: 9.30
Round 3 Feb. 9: 15.00 Feb. 9: 9.30
Round 4 Feb. 10: 15.00 Feb. 10: 9.30
Round 5 Feb. 11: 15.00 Feb. 11: 9.30
Round 6 Feb. 12: 15.00 Feb. 12: 9.30
Round 7 Feb. 13: 15.00 Feb. 13: 9.30
Round 8 Feb. 14: 15.00 Feb. 14: 9.30
Round 9 Feb. 15: 15.00 Feb. 15: 9.30
Closing Ceremony Feb. 16: 18.00  
Prizes Feb. 16: 19.00 – 22.00  
Qualification Blitz Tournament Feb. 16: 10.00  
Departure Feb. 17 Feb. 16-17

Swiss Blitz Tournament

On 17 Feb. 2012 a double nine-round Swiss Blitz Tournament will be held in the same venue (Hotel Cosmos). The prize
fund of the Qualification Tournament constitutes EUR 25,000 to be distributed as follows:

1st Prize 7,000
2nd Prize 4,000
3rd Prize 2,500
4th Prize 1,500
5th Prize 1,000
6-10th Prizes 5 x 800 = 4,000
11-15th Prizes 5 x 600 = 3,000
16-20th Prizes 5 x 400 = 2,000

The participants of tournaments A and B are admitted without a fee. The other players will be admitted on the following terms:

  • admission fee: EUR 300
  • two nights at the hotel (single room:EUR 180; double room: EUR 280 for two persons)
  • airfare (depending on the zone): EUR 50; 100; 250; 325

Attention of all potential participants!

This year the Organizing Committee has again decided to reimburse the participants for the airport and fuel taxes they have to pay. The whole trip will become cheaper for both the participants and the accompanying persons. There is an insignificant redistribution of airport cities by zones. Futhermore, starting from the year 2010, all participants and accompanying persons who enjoy, within this project, the services of the air company Aeroflot – Russian Airlines and who have paid for their respective packages, will get their fully paid for air tickets by e-mail. The earlier you pay the entry fee (also, with a very cheap air ticket) the smaller its amount will be. The minimal fees are accepted until 10 Dec 2010. All prices are given in Euros. When paying in USD 1 Euro = 1.5 USD.

Bank details

We kindly request the participants to transfer the payment in EUR or USD for the package to the following account:


Account (IBAN) CH07 0483 5056 0205 7200 1
Account name Interchess Ltd.


Account (IBAN) CH34 0483 5056 0205 7200 0
Account name Interchess Ltd.

CREDIT SUISSE: Paradeplatz 8 – Sort Code (Swiss Interbank Clearing): BC 4835
8070 Zurich, Postfach 500, SWIFT: CRES CH ZZ 80 A

Visa, tickets and payment

From the tables given below one can see the financial conditions of participation. The price of the package (airfare, transfer, accommodation and entry fee) is given at a discount. A participant who does not need air ticket and accommodation should only pay the entrance fee, which is the same for all participants. The earlier the payment is made the smaller its amount.

We again call the attention of all foreigners who wish to participate in the festival “Aeroflot Open 2012” that in order to get their visas and air tickets in time they should pay for the package no later than Jan 24, 2012.

After the payment is made please send to our e-mail or fax addresses the registration form, including the name and surname, Elo rating, birth date, home address, number and expiry date of your passport, as well as a (scanned) copy of it, your itinerary (with arrival and departure dates). Please name the city in which you want to get your entry visa. The further course of action is this – the Association of Chess Federations receives a confirmation of payment and at once, within a single working day, sends an invitation to start arranging for a visa. Electronic tickets will be sent to the e-mail address you indicate.

Accommodation at the hotel room from 6 to 17 Feb. 2012 is paid for by the package. Those who wish to come earlier and/or depart at a later date should book and additionally pay for their rooms in advance (not later than Feb. 1, 2012). The room prices in the periods from 4 to 6 Feb. and from 17 Feb. to 19 Mar 2012 are:

  • single room – EUR 90
  • double room – EUR 140 (for 2 persons)
  • One person may stay in a double room only if he has paid the whole price (EUR 140).

Attention is called to the fact that full packages that have already been paid for are not refundable. Payments in rubles or US dollars is accepted at the following rates:

EUR 1 = RUB 45.00
EUR 1 = USD 1.5

tel/fax: +7 (495) 635-5684
tel.: +7 (985) 763-3616
Official web site:

Full details of rules, regulations, conditions and many different
example packages are available on the official announcement.

ChessBase reports on recent Aeroflot tournaments

Aeroflot Open: Le Quang Liem takes early lead with 3.0/3
10.02.2011 – The International Chess Festival, the "Aeroflot Open" has started its 10th edition, with three opens for players of all ratings, and a EUR 125,000 prize fund. In the A Open, reserved for players rated 2550 or more, last year's winner Le is in the sole lead with 3.0/3 after a brilliant win, and will face the top-seed Kamsky, who also won with a sparkling positional queen sacrifice. Report and games.
Aeroflot Open: Le Quang Liem crushes Kamsky and is now on 4.5/5
12.02.2011 – Whether an off-day for the American, or an on-day for the Vietnamese, Le's victory over Kamsky in the fourth round was nothing short of explosive. Quang Liem continues his great form and is now on 4.5/5 with a 2988 performance. He wasn't the only inspired player, as perusing the games reveals, and we highlight a pearl that might otherwise be missed. Report with pictures by Maria Bolshakova.
Aeroflot Open: Le Quang Liem takes full point lead in 'last' open?
15.02.2011 – Despite the wonderful conditions, such as a generous prizefund with $20,000 for first place, reduced airfares, and even airport taxes covered by the organizers, the tournament director has admitted that next year's event is not guaranteed. Though attendance is on a low, possibly due to the world crisis, the field has been no less impressive. A beautiful illustrated report by Anna Burtasova.
Aeroflot Open: Le Quang Liem supreme; Mamedyarov wins blitz
18.02.2011 – It had seemed like a no-brainer to predict a second straight win for Le after his incredible start, but a loss to Cheparinov almost changed the whole story. Then it was the Bulgarian who had a shocking loss to Vitiugov, allowing his opponent to reap the benefits of his victory from the previous day. Mamedyarov won the World Blitz Qualifier and with the report we have a pictorial by Yana Melnikova.
World Blitz Championshp Qualifier: Videos!
21.02.2011 – After the last round of the Aeroflot Open, a qualifier for the World Blitz Championship was held, which brought in several top players to join in the fray, such as Mamedyarov, Karjakin, Grischuk and more. Though game scores are not available, someone with a camcorder made sure the event was not reduced to a mere crosstable with results. Here are videos by Sergey Sorokhtin.
Dortmund 2010: Le Quang Liem beats Ponomariov
18.07.2010 – 19-year-old Le Quang Liem earned a place in this tournament by winning the Aeroflot tournament in Moscow, earlier this year. The Vietnamese GM has had a string of very strong events, jumping from practically nowhere into the top 50 in the world. That was no fluke, as he demonstrated today with a fine victory over tournament leader Ruslan Ponomariov. Round four report.
Aeroflot Open – the guessing game
16.02.2010 – Five players lead with 5.0/7 points in the A groupe of this prestigious Moscow open tournament – two Vietnamese and three Russians. Eleven GMs from various nations following half a point behind. The female players start at place 48. There are a lot of very nice but uncaptioned pictures on the official tournament site. Thanks for the help in identifying them – there are still a few names missing.
Aeroflot Open 2010 – Le Quang Liem in the lead
12.02.2010 – After three rounds of this massive tournament GM Le Quang Liem is the only player left with a clean score: three wins in three games. He is followed by another Vietnamese GM (and a Bulgarian and a Russian), with 31 players behind them – of whom two are female and one an IM. We bring you results and games, plus photo impressions by WGM Yana Melnikova.
Aeroflot Open 2010 has started in Moscow
09.02.2010 – The 9th Aeroflot Open is taking place from Feb. 9–18, 2010, in the tourist complex Izmailovo Hotel Gamma-Delta. The prize sum is EUR 180,000. There are four open tournaments (A1, A2, B and C) which are made up according to the rating of the participants. The A1 tournament has players with a rating of 2550 or higher. Results and games of round one.
Chernyshov wins Moscow Open 2010
08.02.2010 – This event took place from Jan. 30 to Feb. 7, just before the 9th Aeroflot Open (Feb. 8–19) – which meant that many strong players were in the Russian capital to participate in both tournaments. Four players shared first in the Moscow Open, with 7.0/9 points. The winner was Konstantin Chernyshov on tie-break, with the decisive factor being that he had the most wins. Illustrated report.
FIDE World Blitz Championship 2010 Internet Tournament
13.01.2010 – On February 18, 2010, during the Aeroflot tournament, a double nine-round Swiss blitz tournament will be held in Moscow – a qualifier for the World Blitz Championship to be held in November 2010 after the Tal Memorial. Would you like to take part in the Feb. 18 tournament? Three places, including flight expenses and hotel in Moscow, are available to the winners of this FIDE Playchess qualifier.
Aeroflot-gate: reactions from our readers
13.03.2009 – When he was crushed at the Aeroflot Open by a weaker player in just 21 moves top seed Shakhriyar Mamedyarov withdrew in protest, claiming his opponent had been using computer assistance. The accused, Igor Kurnosov, replied with an open letter, and ten days later Mamedyarov restated (and emphasized) his claims. All this has produced vigorous feedback from our readers. Excerpts.
Aeroflot-gate: Mamedyarov sticks to his guns
11.03.2009 – Two weeks ago we reported from the Aeroflot Open, where top seed Shakhriyar Mamedyarov withdrew after a game where he felt his opponent, GM Igor Kurnosov, had been receiving computer assistance. A week later Kurnosov responded, and now Mamedyarov, who is not prepared to let the matter drop, has published a strongly-worded letter on an Azeri sports website. Translation.
Alexander Moiseenko – the secret of success
11.03.2009 – He is 28, a lawyer by training but a strong chess grandmaster by profession. Recently Alexander Moiseenko won the very strong Aeroflot Open, together with Etienne Bacrot. This is just the culmination of a row of successful tournaments. Moiseenko spoke at length with our correspondent WGM Anastasiya Karlovich about training, tournament strategy and chess in Ukraine. Interview.

Aeroflot scandal – the accused responds
02.03.2009 – A week ago we reported on the sensational incident at the Aeroflot Open, when world-class grandmaster Shakriyar Mamedyarov publicly accused Russian GM Igor Kurnosov of using computer assistance, in their sixth-round game. Now the accused player has responded in a formal statement on what transpired. We bring you a translation and selection of readers' letters.

Sergey Karjakin wins Aeroflot Blitz Qualifier
27.02.2009 – As part of the Aeroflot Open Chess Festival one more big event was held in Moscow. 165 players took part in the Qualification Tournament for the World Blitz Championship, among them over a hundred grandmasters. For the majority the blitz tournament was part of playing in the Aeroflot Open, but some arrived in Moscow only to qualify for the World Blitz. Photo report by WGM Yana Melnikova.

Etienne Bacrot wins Aeroflot Open 2009
26.02.2009 – Things didn't look that good for France's top GM, until victories in the last two rounds put him at the top of the table and gave him first place on tiebreak points. Second, with the same number of points (6.5/9) was Alexander Moiseenko of Ukraine. We bring you all results and games from the top group, plus, from wintry Moscow, a big photo report by WGM Yana Melnikova.

Aeroflot Open 2009 – photographic impressions
24.02.2009 – What was missing from our reports on the Aeroflot Open? Why pictures, visual impressions of the action. Not a single one was on the official site, and so it was a pleasant surprise when a colleague sent us a very nice bunch from Moscow. The include some critical shots of the contentious game Mamedyarov-Kurnosov from round six. From Moscow here is Misha Savinov's big pictorial report.

Top seed Mamedyarov withdraws from Aeroflot Open
23.02.2009 – Shakhriyar Mamedyarov is the top seed in the 2009 edition of the Aeroflot Open in Moscow (February 17–26). After five rounds he was leading, together with Alexander Moiseenko and Igor Kurnosov. In round six he was crushed by Kurnosov in 21 moves. Mamedyarov filed an official complaint, essentially accusing his opponent of cheating, and withdrew from the event. Breaking news.

Kurnosov leads at Aeroflot Open 2009
20.02.2009 – In recent years, the Aeroflot Open in Moscow (February 17–26) has become established as the world's strongest open tournament. The top section is limited to players rated 2550 or over – and has 76 participants of whom only seven are not GMs. The prize fund is 70,000 Euros, with 21,000 going to the winner. After three rounds Igor Kurnosov leads with 3.0 points. Games and results.

Nepomniachtchi wins Aeroflot Open 2008
22.02.2008 – We are going to have to learn to pronounce his name. GM Ian Nepomniachtchi of Russia scored 7.0/9 to finish clear first in the 2008 Aeroflot Open in Moscow. His performance was a resounding 2822. Behind him we find Russian GMs Alexander Motylev and Alexey Dreev, each with 6.5 points. We bring you the final standings, games, pictures and videos.

Aeroflot 2008: Two players lead with 4.5/5 points
19.02.2008 – They are Maxim Rodshtein from Israel and Ian Nepomniachtchi from Russia. Behind them are two further Russian GMs, Artyom Timofeev and Alexey Dreev. The Aeroflot Open 2008 has completed five rounds in the "Gamma-Delta" Hotel in Moscow. We bring you standings, games, pictures and videos.

Aeroflot Open 2000 under way in Moscow
16.02.2008 – It will probably be the strongest open of the year, and is taking place from February 13th to 22nd. The venue and official hotel the "Gamma-Delta" Hotel, which can accomodate 3,500 guests. The festival consists of four tournaments, each a nine rounds Swiss Tournament. We bring you results and games from the first two rounds, and a number of video links that provide impressions of the tournament.

Aeroflot Open 2007: Evgeny Alekseev wins in style
25.02.2007 – The winner of the Russian championship superfinal also took clear first the Aeroflot Open 2007. Actually he completed a hattrick by winning the St. Petersburg Blitz Championship in between. Well done! Evgeny Tomashevsky finished second, outmatching Dmitry Jakovenko by the narrowest of margins. Big illustrated report by Misha Savinov.

Aeroflot: Jakovenko, Alekseev, Tomashevsky lead
22.02.2007 – Actually the sensation is 21-year-old GM Stanislav Novikov, who has come out of nowhere – and from a very modest background – to show opening originality, excellent endgame knowledge, pragmatism, stubbornness in defense and incredible determination. Take a look at his tenacious draw against Jakovenko. Misha Savinov reports.

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