US Championships to kick off Wednesday

by ChessBase
10/5/2021 – The Saint Louis Chess Club, headed by Rex Sinquefield, has done a lot for chess in the United States, and they continue to organize top tournaments. Beginning Wednesday, the club will host the national championships. With players such as Caruana, So, Dominguez, Shankland, Xiong, Krush and Yip, both tournaments are strongly contested, though Hikaru Nakamura is missing from the lineup. | Photo: Crystal Fuller

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Returning to Saint Louis for a 13th time

Press release by the Saint Louis Chess Club

Although last year’s US Championships were held online (Wesley So was the winner), we are thrilled to announce the return of these two over the board events that will once again be held in the Nation’s Chess Capital.

The drama and excitement that is sure to unfold provides inspiration for chess players in the United States and worldwide. We look forward to hosting our nation’s chess championships for the 13th consecutive year and showcasing the best of our sport.

“We are pleased that our premier events are returning to over-the-board play, and that they continue to be hosted by our partners at the Saint Louis Chess Club, who always make the experience an exceptional one for both players and fans”, said US Chess Executive Director, Carol Meyer.

The 2021 U.S. Championships will be streamed live daily starting at 3:00pm CT on, featuring play-by-play and analysis from the world-renowned commentary team of GM Yasser Seirawan, GM Maurice Ashley and GM Alejandro Ramirez.


Over the course of eleven rounds, twelve competitors will battle for $194,000 in prize money ($100,000 in the women’s tournament), qualification into the World Championship cycle, and the coveted title of 2021 US Champion.

Time Control: 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game with an addition of 30 seconds (increment) per move starting from move one.


  • October 6-9: Rounds 1-4
  • October 10: Rest day
  • October 11-14: Rounds 5-8
  • October 15: Rest day
  • October 16-18: Rounds 9-11
  • October 19: Playoff (if necessary) and closing ceremony

Saint Louis Chess Club

The United States’ chess capital | Photo: Austin Fuller

US Championship field

Title First Last Rating* Qualification Method
GM Fabiano Caruana 2855 Rating
GM Wesley So 2807 2020 U.S. Champion
GM Leinier Dominguez 2794 Rating
GM Jeffery Xiong 2748 Rating
GM Sam Shankland 2736 Rating
GM Ray Robson 2711 Rating
GM Dariusz Swiercz 2698 Rating
GM Sam Sevian 2692 Rating
GM Lazaro Bruzon 2686 Rating
GM Alex Lenderman 2668 US Chess Online Qualifier
GM Daniel Naroditsky 2654 Wildcard
GM John Burke 2589 2020 U.S. Junior Champion

US Women’s Championship field

Title First Last Rating* Qualification Method
GM Irina Krush 2475 2020 U.S. Women's Champion
IM Carissa Yip 2468 2020 US Girls’ Junior Champion
WGM Anna Zatonskih 2453 Rating
WGM Tatev Abrahamyan 2403 Rating
WIM Nazi Paikidze 2386 Rating
WIM Gulrukhbegim Tokhirjonova 2375 Rating
WIM  Katerina Nemcova 2347 Rating
WGM Thalia Cervantes 2316 Rating
WGM Anna Sharevich 2296 Rating
WIM Sabina Foisor 2286 Rating
WIM Ashritha Eswaran 2286 Wildcard
WIM Megan Lee 2268 Wildcard

*Invitational ratings are calculated based on the September US Chess rating supplement, with bonuses for being at or near peak rating and penalties for inactivity.

John Burke

20-year-old John Burke will get to face most of the strongest grandmasters in the country | Photo: Austin Fuller


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michael bacon michael bacon 10/7/2021 04:23
In regard t the comment made by "Nite Moves", "...get rid of the Woman's Championship (it's degrading to both sexes)..."
Right on, Right On, RIGHT ON, Brother! Women want to be separate, but equal, while having their cake and eating it, too. If women players really wanted equality they would stop competing with only other women, and stop putting a "W" in front of their more easily obtained title.
njg149Chess njg149Chess 10/7/2021 03:26
Why isn't Nakamura playing in it this year?
michael bacon michael bacon 10/6/2021 03:24
"...and penalties for inactivity." What the fork? I've been involved with the Royal Game for over half a century and cannot ever recall a player being penalized for inactivity. Coming as it does during a PANDEMIC makes it even more ludicrous, not to mention the fact that it could possibly allow any organizer anywhere to manipulate the system to include, or exclude, any player. There were several times during the career of Bobby Fischer that he played no Chess and he was never penalized for being away from the board!
Nite Moves Nite Moves 10/6/2021 06:14
I've said this before and I'll say it again - get rid of the Woman's Championship (it's degrading to both sexes) and combine the prize money or extend the number of places to include the total pot. It's 2021, not 1921. No more gender specific titles
Green22 Green22 10/5/2021 08:59
No Naka? maybe he's skipping it which would be odd.