London Chess Classic 2009 – prepare for the best

by ChessBase
10/12/2009 – Once a great world center of chess, London is once again playing host to a very high level tournament, the highest in the city for 25 years. Participants in the eight-player Category 19 include Carlsen, Kramnik, Nakamura, Short and Adams. The event will be staged in December at the Olympia Conference Centre in West London. There will be free live broadcast on the Internet. Tournament details.

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The London Chess Classic 2009 is the highest level tournament in London for 25 years and will be the first in a series of events designed, according to the organisers, "to increase enthusiasm for chess in the UK and promote the game and its undoubted educational benefits in schools and communities." It is also their objective to bring the World Chess Championship to London in the Olympic year 2012.

England's four leading Grandmasters; Michael Adams, Nigel Short, Luke McShane and David Howell will be pitched against a world class field that includes a former world champion Vladimir Kramnik and 18-year-old Magnus Carlsen, ranked world number three and widely seen a future holder of the world crown. One of China's finest players; Ni Hua and the US Champion Hikaru Nakamura, complete the field.

The tournament is being organised by the London Chess Center and its very enterprising director IM Malcolm Pein, and financed by a private sponsor from the City of London. It will be FIDE Category 19 with an average FIDE rating of 2700. Here are the statistics of the eight players, with the September FIDE ratings.

1 Magnus Carlsen Norway 2772
2 Vladimir Kramnik Russia 2772
3 Hikaru Nakamura USA 2735
4 Nigel Short England 2706
5 Ni Hua China 2692
6 Michael Adams England 2682
7 David Howell England 2624
8 Luke McShane England 2615

The games will be under a classical chess time control: 40 moves in two hours, 20 in the subsequent hour then an additional 15 minutes plus an increment of 30 seconds a move until the end of the game. The tournament will further benefit from the use of Sofia Rules which disallow early draws. Players will receive three points for a win and one for a draw.

Tournament Schedule

Monday 7th December Press Conference + blindfold display  


8th December

Round 1



9th December

Round 2



10th December

Round 3


Friday 11th December Rest day and Community / School events  


12th December

Round 4



13th December

Round 5



14th December

Round 6



15th December

Round 7


The events below will run in conjunction with the London Classic, 7-15 December. Details of entry fees and prizes are now available on Online entries can now be made by clicking here a form suitable for download will be available soon as well.


The minimum prize fund is €100,000. Included in the prize fund will be a €10,000 Brilliant Game award along with prizes for each victory with the white and black pieces.

The venue

The London Chess Classic will be held at the Olympia Conference Centre in West London

The seating: for more information about the venue please visit the OCC website

How to Get There: The Olympia Conference Centre is easily accesible via several bus routes, tube and main line train services.

The nearest tube/train station is Kensington Olympia (District and Circle Lines). Hammersmith Station (Piccadilly, District and Hammersmith & City Line) is also nearby, within 20 mins walk or very short bus journey. Full instructions can be found here (PDF).


The games will be covered live online, on the official web site and on Playchess. Fans will be able to vote for Game of the Day. Spectators will be treated to live commentary on the games from Grandmasters and will be able to play tournament or informal games all day.


The London Chess Classic 2009 will offer free admission to children for the duration of the event which runs from December 8th to 15th. Adult tickets are just £10 per day or just £50 for all seven rounds. Adult and junior ticket holders receive admission to the tournament, plus a guaranteed seat in the auditorium and access to the commentary room where some of the UK’s leading Grandmasters will give insights into the play and answer questions. You can buy tickets here or call +44-207-388-2404.


The games will be broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server If you are not a member you can download the free PGN reader ChessBase Light, which gives you immediate access. You can also use the program to read, replay and analyse PGN games. New and enhanced: CB Light 2009!

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