Madrid: Suárez wins main event, Oro’s IM title hunt falls just short

by Carlos Alberto Colodro
6/18/2024 – The Madrid Chess Festival came to an end on Saturday. Two 10-player closed tournaments and a 48-player Swiss open took place concurrently. The main event was won by Spanish IM Julio Suárez, who beat former sole leader Levy Rozman in their round-8 encounter. The Closed B tournament was won by Venezuelan FM Pedro Martínez. Argentine rising star, 10-year-old Faustino Oro (pictured), needed to score 5½ points to become the youngest IM in the history of the game, but missed the goal by a mere half point after finishing the tournament undefeated in sole third place. | Photo: / Federico Marín

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Suárez outscores Rozman

The Closed A tournament in Madrid saw famed streamer Levy Rozman becoming the sole leader at the halfway mark after kicking off the event with 3 wins and 2 draws. Also known as Gotham Chess, the US representative ended the tournament with 3 draws and a critical loss against eventual champion Julio Suárez. It was still a remarkable showing by Rozman, who had not played a single official tournament in 2 years.

As reported by Federico Marín, tournament winner Julio Suárez is not a professional chess player, since he is now focused on studying Mathematics.

Third place went to Spanish FM Dani Tabuenca, who collected 5 points and finished the event with a better tiebreak score than his compatriot IM Diego Macías, who also scored 5/9.

Julio Suarez, Levy Rozman

Julio Suárez defeated Levy Rozman with the white pieces in the penultimate round | Photo: / Federico Marín

Final standings - Closed A

Rk. Name Pts.  TB1 
1 Suarez Gomez, Julio 6,5 27,50
2 Rozman, Levy 5,5 22,25
3 Tabuenca Mendataurigoitia, Danie 5 22,75
4 Macias Pino, Diego 5 21,00
5 Cuenca Jimenez, Jose Fernando 4,5 17,25
6 Nakada, Akira 4 21,00
7 Alonso Garcia, Aaron 4 18,00
8 Suarez Uriel, Adrian 4 16,00
9 Martinez Duany, Lelys Stanley 3,5 14,50
10 Sosa, Tomas 3 12,75

All games - Closed A

‘Messi of chess’ in clear third place

The Closed B tournament featured 3 GMs, 4 IMs and 3 FMs, with 10-year-old Faustino Oro from Argentina a special guest in Spain’s capital. The prodigious boy from Buenos Aires needed to score 5½/9 points (or +2) to become the youngest International Master in history. The youngster collected 8 draws and 1 win for a final 5/9 score, falling just short of breaking the record — for now, Abhimanyu Mishra continues to be the youngest IM in history.

Oro’s performance was nonetheless outstanding, as he entered the event as the 8th seed, and showed great maturity throughout the nine rounds. As reported by Infobae, the ‘Messi of chess’ will get a last chance of getting the record at the Cerrado IM Barcelona, set to take place on June 25-30. Oro will be the third seed in a 10-player round-robin.

Only a half point above Oro, Venezuelan FM Pedro Martínez and US IM Eric Rosen tied for first place with 5½ points each. Martínez was declared the tournament winner on tiebreak criteria. Perhaps more importantly, the 5½/9 performance granted Martínez his final IM norm, six years after he had obtained his previous norm. Living in Spain, the tournament winner teaches chess to blind players for ONCE (Spanish National Organization for the Blind).

Faustino Oro, Pedro Martinez

Pedro Martínez playing white against Faustino Oro (draw) | Photo: / Federico Marín

Final standings - Closed B

Rk. Name Pts.  TB1 
1 Martinez Reyes, Pedro Ramon 5,5 24,00
2 Rosen, Eric 5,5 23,25
3 Oro, Faustino 5 22,25
4 Alvarez Pedraza, Aramis 4,5 19,75
5 Garrido Outon, Alex 4,5 19,75
6 Gascon Del Nogal, Jose Rafael 4,5 19,50
7 Vega Gutierrez, Sabrina 4,5 19,50
8 Larino Nieto, David 4,5 18,50
9 Ostrovskiy, Aleksandr 4 17,75
10 Ruiz Buendia, Miguel 2,5 11,75

All games - Closed B


Carlos Colodro is a Hispanic Philologist from Bolivia. He works as a freelance translator and writer since 2012. A lot of his work is done in chess-related texts, as the game is one of his biggest interests, along with literature and music.
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