Romanian Championship covered in snow

2/18/2012 – It is not something we have seen before: chess players travelling to the round of their national championship on a horse-pulled sleigh. But an Arctic winter with deep sub-zero temperatures, and a field of hardened, undaunted players, make it possible. "Why go to the North Pole if it will come here to us," writes WGM Alina L'Ami, who has sent us this big pictorial report.

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Many greetings from the winter lands of Romania! I am struggling to send you all the photos I've made so far, but the Internet connection is very slow or sometimes completely gone, for reasons that are obvious: the weather is simply incredible in Romania right now, and is creating a lot of problems and headaches. It was even worse before, when the roads were blocked, but it seems that the bad times are not over yet. I cannot believe that, after a very warm December and a sunny January, we have such an awful February – payback time from the cold season I guess.

All of this is the reason why the National Championship of Romania was postponed for 48 hours: we couldn't have made it to Sarata Monteoru, the place we are at right now. Romania was and still is under heavy snows, with deep sub zero temperatures – think about Siberia and you are coming close. When will the winter's wrath end I wonder?!


On our way to Sarata Monteoru; in the foreground Irina Bulmaga and Smaranda Padurariu


Many thanks to our bus driver, who safely brought us to the final destination!
You cannot imagine the amount of snow we saw on the roads, European ones!

Our chess club chose to stay in the Villa Olga, run by the tournament organizer Mihai Posedaru, who is trying extremely hard to make us all happy. Unfortunately, he is not able to stop the snowy clouds nor to ask winter to simply go away. We are a bit far from the tournament hall – around two kilometres through snow and uphill. Why go to North Pole, when the North Pole has come to us?


The winter landscape in Sarata Monteoru, which is incredibly beautiful


A little private house covered with more snow than I can remember here in Romania

But, as you can see, nothing stops us from having our national championship. There are some technical issues, such as: how to get to the playing hall through the snow drifts. Well, we are Romanians, survivors, we will always find a way. You will see in the pictures how. Which is all quite funny to be honest. I felt like a child again, and I know that many players were eager to try it at least once. So we combined necessity with pleasure and safely arrived on time for the games.


Making your way through the snow-covered landscape


You have to watch out for traffic on the narrow roads to the event


If you are lucky – like the girls from our club – you can hitch a ride...


... to the tournament hall, which is of course itself covered with snow.

We are playing in separate sections, men and women – an open tournament with nine rounds for women and eleven for men. Although there are only 27 participants in our women section, all the strongest players are present, fighting for the top spots. The same goes for the men section, where there are 123 players participating. Only Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu is missing – he chose to play in the Aeroflot. The rate of play is 90 minutes for 40 moves and 15 minutes for the rest, with an increment of 30 seconds per move starting with move one. It's quite a fast tempo, so there are many interesting games to watch, with many ending in time troubles.


The playing hall for the women's section


That's me on the left, playing against Otilia Baciu in round two


Mother against daughter: the game Cristina vs Veronica Foisor ended in a draw


Another family encounter: Irina Bulmaga playing against her sister Elena


WCM Roxana-Ana Anton, rated 1859



WIM Ioana-Smaranda Padurariu, rated 2247


WCM Ioana Gelip, rated 2025


Top seed WGM Corina-Isabela Peptan, rated 2425


Second seed: WGM Cristina-Adela Foisor, rated 2395


Me, WGM, rated 2360 and third seed


In second place: WGM Elena-Luminita Cosma, rated 2325


WCM Andreea-Marioara Cosman, rated 1885, my opponent from the first round. She is young
and talented –I had to work very hard and needed some luck to get the full point from her.


Dinner time for our chess club! Many children came to the Championship to gain experience


(Mămăligă, our bread replacement, made from corn flour. It is one of the things I miss when I'm abroad


The playing hall for the top boards; you can see some bags on the floor – they
contain gifts from the organization, and are highly appreciated!


Mircea Parligras and Constantin Lupulescu, the two players above 2600, were a little
bit late for the start of the round. But that can be explained: it was 09.30 in the morning.


GM Levente Vajda, rated 2594, currently in second place


GM Gergely-Andras-Gyula Szabo, rated 2554


Second seed GM Constantin Lupulescu, rated 2648


Top seed GM Mircea Parligras, rated 2650

Open Tournament – Top rankings after round seven

Rk.
Ti. Name RtgI
Pts.
 TB1 
 TB2 
 TB3 
 TB4 
1
GM Nevednichy Vladislav 2546
6.5
22.5
29.75
25.5
2779
2
GM Vajda Levente 2594
5.5
23.5
24.00
24.5
2572
3
GM Lupulescu Constantin 2648
5.5
23.0
25.00
23.5
2583
4
GM Berescu Alin-Mile 2488
5.5
21.5
22.75
21.5
2444
5
IM Cioara Andrei-Nestor 2456
5.5
21.0
21.75
23.0
2564
6
GM Manolache Marius 2552
5.5
20.5
22.50
22.0
2504
7
GM Jianu Vlad-Cristian 2508
5.5
19.0
19.75
21.0
2447
8
GM Szabo Gergely-Andras-Gyula 2554
5.0
24.0
22.00
24.5
2522
9
IM Dumitrache Dragos-Nicolae 2460
5.0
21.5
20.50
21.5
2349
10
IM Miron Lucian-Costin 2525
5.0
21.0
20.50
21.0
2395
11
NM Doros Radu-Marian 2338
5.0
20.5
20.25
20.0
2375
12
FM Anton Teodor 2393
5.0
20.5
20.00
19.5
2259
13
FM Spulber Cicirone 2244
5.0
20.5
18.25
20.5
2376
14
IM Filip Lucian 2490
5.0
20.0
20.00
20.0
2360
15
NM Gilea Lucian 2261
5.0
20.0
18.00
20.0
2416
16
GM Parligras Mircea-Emilian 2650
5.0
19.5
18.50
20.0
2383
17
NM Stanciu Alexandru-Ovidiu 2314
5.0
18.0
17.25
19.5
2295
18
  Martian Dragos-Daniel 2074
5.0
16.0
13.50
18.0
2219

Women's tournament – Top rankings after round five

Rk.
Title Name RtgI
Pts.
 TB1 
 TB2 
 TB3 
 TB4 
1
WGM Foisor Cristina-Adela 2395
4.0
10.5
12.50
12.5
2396
2
WGM Cosma Elena-Luminita 2325
4.0
9.5
12.75
12.5
2412
3
WFM Foisor Mihaela-Veronica 2215
4.0
8.5
10.75
12.0
2362
4
WFM Uta Adeline-Ramona 2087
4.0
8.0
9.00
12.0
2291
5
WGM L'ami Alina 2360
3.5
9.5
10.25
12.5
2292
6
WIM Dragomirescu Angela 2240
3.5
9.5
9.75
11.5
2360
7
WGM Peptan Corina-Isabela 2425
3.5
9.0
9.50
10.5
2156
8
WGM Sandu Mihaela 2248
3.0
9.0
7.00
11.0
2237
9
WIM Bulmaga Irina 2360
3.0
8.5
5.50
8.0
1985
10
WCM Cosman Andreea-Marioara 1885
3.0
8.0
5.50
9.0
1996
11
  Bulmaga Elena 1816
3.0
8.0
4.50
7.0
2046
12
WCM Cusmuliuc Diana-Elena 1745
3.0
7.5
7.00
8.0
2190
13
WCM Gelip Ioana 2025
3.0
7.0
5.00
8.0
1933

Links

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