FIDE announces its Grand Prix Circuit 2008/09

by ChessBase
2/6/2008 – The World Chess Federation, together with its commercial arm, Global Chess, is staging a Grand Prix circuit. The top 40 players can participate in four out of six 14-player events that will be staged around the globe. Venues are Baku, Krasnoyarsk, Doha, Montreux, Elista and Karlovy Vary, top qualified players are Anand, Kramnik, Topalov, Kamsky, Shirov, Carlsen and Karjakin. Announcement.

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FIDE announcement

Grand Prix Qualifiers

FIDE is pleased to publish the names of the first batch of players who have qualified for the Grand Prix series 2008/9. Following a request by some of the players who are playing in the matches this year, the FIDE President has accepted to allow the four players to take part in the Grand Prix from the beginning, if they so desire.

The criteria for qualification therefore read as follows:

3.1. MATCHES. For the first cycle of 2008/9, all players in the World Championship (i.e. Kramnik or Anand) and Challenger matches (Topalov or the World Cup 2007 winner) will be invited to participate in the Grand Prix from the outset. Given the organisation of both these matches in the third quarter of 2008, these players will all be asked to commit their participation in the Grand Prix series by not later than 31st January 2008. Should any of these players decline to participate in the Grand Prix series, the President may nominate a player to replace and this player must be rated among the top 40 players in the World.

Name Title Country Rating Games B-Year
Kramnik, Vladimir GM RUS 2799 9 1975
Anand, Viswanathan GM IND 2799 3 1969
Topalov, Veselin GM BUL 2780 14 1975
Kamsky, Gata GM USA 2726 32 1974

3.2. QUALIFICATION. The FIDE World Cup in Khanty Mansiysk 2007 will be used to determine three qualifiers for the 2008/9 Grand Prix Series. Excluding the winner, these will be the players who have qualified to the semi final stages of the World Cup.

Name Title Country Rating Games B-Year
Shirov, Alexei GM ESP 2755 49 1972
Carlsen, Magnus GM NOR 2733 37 1990
Karjakin, Sergey GM UKR 2732 36 1990

3.3. RATING. Based on an average calculation to two decimal places, of the January 2007 rating list and the October 2007 rating list in the year prior to start of the cycle, seven qualifiers will be selected (excluding the four players who will be playing the matches as defined in Article 2.1). If players have the same average rating, the number of games played between January 2007 and September 2007 (rating period) will be used to determine ranking. To ensure active participation in the future, a minimum of twenty five (25) games is being recommended in the four rating lists including and prior to the October rating list in the year of qualification i.e. 2009, 2011 etc.. Given the short notice in the first edition of the Grand Prix, this regulation will not be applicable in the 2008-2009 series. If any player, qualified by rating, does not accept to play in the Grand Prix series, then the selection process using the average rating (Oct-07 & Jan-07 to two decimal places) plus number of games played in the rating period (Jan-07 + Apr-07 + Jul-07 + Oct-07) will be adopted to identify reserves, until the number of qualifiers required for the Grand Prix is completed. The first seven players and reserves are as follows :

No. Name Nat. Oct-07 Games Jan-07 Games Avg
1. Ivanchuk, Vassily UKR 2787
2. Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar AZE 2752
3. Leko, Peter HUN 2755
4. Morozevich, Alexander RUS 2755
5. Aronian, Levon ARM 2741
6. Radjabov, Teimour AZE 2742
7. Gelfand, Boris ISR 2736

Reserve players

1st Adams, Michael ENG 2729
2nd Svidler, Peter RUS 2732
3rd Polgar, Judit HUN 2708
4th Grischuk, Alexander RUS 2715

A list (Exel) of the top 25 players by rating and games is also attached for completeness sake.

3.4. PRESIDENT NOMINEES. The FIDE President may nominate one player and he/she must be rated among the top 40 players in the world as per the October 2007 rating list. If the President has more than one nominee as a result of players qualified under 3.1 declining to play, then the players nominated by the President should be from different countries.

Still to be nominated

3.5. HOST CITY NOMINEES. One players may be nominated by each host city and must be rated not less than 2550 in the last rating list prior to the final nomination or selection of players. If the host city does not have a player rated at least 2550 then the highest rated player from the Federation of the host city will be invited to play, subject to his rating not being lower than 2500.

Still to be nominated

The WCCC will coordinate with Global Chess and with all the host cities, in the allocation of players, should there be a conflict in the number of players in their ranking of preference of host cites. FIDE is not obliged, but will do its utmost to respect the players’ preferences, and will balance the player allocation to a host city according to predetermined criteria such as average tournament rating, piece colour, continental representation, etc.

Article 2 has also been clarified, as a result as follows:

The winner of the Grand Prix series at the end of 2009 will play the winner of the World Cup held in 2009 in an eight game match to become the challenger to the World Champion in a match to be held in the third quarter of 2010. Should the overall winner of the Grand Prix also be the World Champion at the end of the Grand Prix series in 2009, then the Challenger rights will go to the second placed overall in the Grand Prix. Should the second placed player in the Grand Prix also be the winner of the World Cup 2009, then the Challenger rights emanating from the Grand Prix will go to the third placed overall in the Grand Prix series.

Dates and venues

FIDE has announced the following dates and venues for the 2008/2009 Grand Prix Tournaments:

2008   April 20th May 6th Baku, Azerbaijan
2 2008 July 30th August 15th Krasnoyarsk (or other Russian city), Russia
3 2008 December 13th December 29th Doha, Qatar
4 2009 April 14th April 28th Montreux, Switzerland
5 2009 August 1st August 17th Elista, Russia
6 2009 December 7th December 23rd Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic
  Reserve cities are Istanbul and Teheran.

Each Tournament will be a 14 player all play all. The winner of the Grand Prix will play with the winner of the 2009 World Cup for the right to challenge the World Champion in 2010.

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