Aerosvit 2008: Carlsen continues to win

by ChessBase
6/15/2008 – "Where were we? Ah, yes, the winning streak..." Magnus Carlsen came out of the free day refreshed and ready to rumble. His opponent, Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu, playing white, went down to the typical relentless pressure exerted by the 17-year-old Norwegian. Magnus once again has a performance of over 3000. Report with pictures of a new weapon against the Petroff.

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Aerosvit-2008 Tournament in Foros, Ukraine

The "Aerosvit-2008" tournament is taking place in a sanatorium complex in the settlement Foros of AR Crimea, Ukraine, from June 7th (day of arrival), to June 20th, 2008 (day of departure). The event is a 12-player round robin with invited participants. The average rating of the players is 2711.7, time controls are 90 minutes for the first 40 moves and 30 minutes to the end of the game, with an addition of 30 sec. after every move. In case of equal points at the end of the tournament the tiebreak is based on the (1) the result of the direct encounter; (2) the Sonneborn-Berger system; (3) the number of won games. The rounds are from Sunday, June 8th until Thursday, June 19th, always starting at 15:00h local time, which is currently CEST +1 (14:00h Berlin/Paris, 13:00h London, 08:00 a.m. New York). Here is a chart for your local time.

Round seven report

Volokitin, Andrei
Svidler, Peter
Karjakin, Sergey
Ivanchuk, Vassily
Jakovenko, Dmitry
Van Wely, Loek
Alekseev, Evgeny
Shirov, Alexei
Nisipeanu, Liviu-Dieter
Carlsen, Magnus
Onischuk, Alexander
Eljanov, Pavel

Return of the Jedi – Magnus Carlsen in great form after the rest day, against LD Nisipeanu

1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nf6 3.Nxe5 d6 4.Nf3 Nxe4 5.Nc3 Nxc3 6.dxc3 Nc6 7.Bf4 Qf6 8.Qd2 Be7 9.0-0-0 0-0 10.Re1 Qf5 11.a3 Bf6 12.Bd3 Qa5 13.h4 Bf5 14.Ng5 Rae8 15.g4 Bxg5 16.Bxf5 Bxf4 17.Qxf4 Re5 18.Bd3 ½-½. The inner-Ukrainian generational conference Karjakin vs Ivanchuk fits in a caption.

Standings after seven rounds

A quick calculation shows that Magnus Carlsen is performing at a 3023 level, and that he would now be number two in the world, just three points behind Vishy Anand. It will be interesting to see if FIDE will be able to include the tournament in the July 1st list – surely it will.

In connection with Magnus's extraordinary performance, not just here, we must remember that a year and a half ago, around February 2007, a number of chess bloggers were appealing to have Magnus removed from the tournament in Morelia/Linares and replaced by a stronger player. How could they spoil the tournament by inviting a "gimmick" participant who didn't stand a snowflake's chance in hell? Well, Magnus came equal second (with Morozevich and behind Anand) in Morelia/Linares 2007 and continued his meteoric rise unfazed. We are reminded of objections raised in 1979, when a 16-year-old was invited to play in a GM tournament in Banja Luka, Yugoslavia. That unrated player went on to win the event and emerge with a 2595 rating, which made him one of the top three grandmasters in the world at the time. So much for chess gurus.

Picture gallery

On the free day the players and seconds had an opportunity to visit the Black Sea marine base of Balaklava near Sevastopol. The town became famous for the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War, thanks to the suicidal Charge of the Light Brigade, when the British cavalry due to a misunderstanding was sent up a valley strongly held on all sides by the Russians. 250 men were killed or wounded, over 400 horses lost – and the finest light cavalry in the world destroyed, to no military purpose. The British poet Alfred Lord Tennyson immortalized this battle in verse – who of us did not, like Molesworth, learn those unforgettable words in school: “Har fleag har fleag har fleag onwards...".

Modern Balaklava – a view from the Genoese fortress

During the Second World War, Balaklava was the southernmost point in the Soviet-German lines. In 1956 the town, together with the whole Crimea, passed from Russia to Ukraine. It became part of the independent state of Ukraine in 1991. Balaklava is also famous for a secret submarine base, operational until 1993, that was said to be virtually indestructible and designed to survive a direct atomic impact.

Henrik Carlsen (father of The Mag), Alexei Shirov and Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu show a suspiciously deep interest in naval guns of war. Watch out for new opening ideas in the second half of the tournament.

Show me the rule which says we cannot use these against the Petroff!

Henrik, Alexei and Liviu-Dieter with their tour guide and a photographer

Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu, who has easily the longest hair of any player rated 2600 or higher


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