Women Grand Prix Series in Istanbul

3/5/2009 – Today the players arrive, Friday are the technical meetings and opening ceremony, on Saturday the first event for a new FIDE Women Grand Prix series 2009/2010 starts, in the Is Bankasi Art Gallery in Istanbul, Turkey. Twelve of the strongest in the world will play a round robin event for a total prize fund of 40,000 Euros. Press release and pictures of the ladies.

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İş Bankası - Women Grand Prix Series in Istanbul

The Turkish Chess Federation in collaboration with FIDE and Global Chess is organising the first event for the new Women Grand Prix series 2009/2010. The tournament will be held in Istanbul, Turkey beginning on the 6th of March 2009. It will also be the second in a series organised by the Turkish Chess Federation commemorating the founder of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

In conjunction with the tournament, the organisers will show their customary hospitality and will be hosting the FIDE Presidential Board for the 1st Quarter meeting of 2009 from 5-8 March. The sponsor of the event is Türkiye İş Bankasi.

The event will be held in İş Sanat Gallery (İş Bankasi Art Gallery) on the entrance floor of İş Bank Towers in Istanbul. The Opening Ceremony will be held on the 41st floor of Is Bank Towers which is the highest place of Istanbul and Southern Europe. İş Bankasi is the corporate sponsor of the Turkish Chess Federation and has supported the "Turkish Chess in School Curriculum" for the last four years.


Tournament venue: the 41st story of the Is Bankasi towers overlooking Istanbul


A view from the İş Bankası Tower over the city of Istanbul

The Turkish Chess Federation is one of the most active national Federations and has already organised in 2009 the Mediterranean Championships and the Turkish Youth Championships with 996 players.

Turkey has also host some other prestigious FIDE tournaments this year including the World Men's Team Championship, the World Youth Championships and the world U-16 Olympiad. The TCF is granted to host the 2012 World Chess Olympiad Istanbul, during the 79th FIDE Congress in Dresden on 24th November 2008.

The FIDE Women Grand Prix is a new series of elite tournaments which will be organised by FIDE and Global Chess. There will be six legs over two years in various countries around the world with three tournaments every year. The next tournament is planned in Nanjing, China at the end of September.

The winner of each tournament will win 6,500 Euros out of a prize fund of 40,000 Euros. The overall winner of the series will win a further 15,000 euros at the end of the series.

This is the first time that such a series is being organised and is a significant development for the chess world. The introduction of the Grand Prix series means that there will be a World Championship contest annually now from 2010. In that year, the Champion will be determined from the World Championship Knockout which will also be held in Turkey and the following year, 2011, the World Champions will face the Winner of the Grand Prix series 2009/2010 in a match for the title.

This will be one of the strongest women tournaments of all times and it is important to point out that there are three ex-world Champions taking part as well as the highest ranked women players in the world.

Participants in Istanbul 2009

#

Name

Title

Nat.

Rating

 1

Koneru Humpy

GM

IND

2621

 2

Hou Yifan

GM

CHN

2571

 3

Antoaneta Stefanova

GM

BUL

2557

 4

Pia Cramling

GM

SWE

2548

 5

Marie Sebag

GM

FRA

2529

 6

Maia Chiburdanidze

GM

GEO

2516

 7

Zhao Xue

GM

CHN

2508

 8

Elina Danielian

IM

ARM

2496

 9

Shen Yang

WGM

CHN

2448

10

Martha Fierro

IM

ECU

2403

11

Zeinab Mamedjarova

WGM

AZE

2362

12

Betül Cemre Yıldız

WIM

TUR

2214

Average rating: 2481.3
Points for norms: GM 7.5, IM 5.0, WGM 4.5

Schedule

Thursday March 05: 18:00h Arrival
Friday March 06: 14:00 Opening
Saturday March 07: 15:00h Round 1
Sunday March 08: 15:00h Round 2
Monday March 09: 15:00h Round 3
Tuesday March 10: 15:00h Round 4
Wednesday March 11 Rest day
Thursday March 12: 15:00h Round 5
Friday March 13: 15:00h Round 6
Saturday March 14: 15:00h Round 7
Sunday March 15: 15:00h Round 8
Monday March 16 Rest day
Tuesday March 17: 15:00h Round 9
Wednesday March 18: 15:00h Round 10
Thursday March 19: 15:00h Round 11
Friday March 20 Departure
 
March 2009
M T W T F S S
            1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28  

The players in pictures

Humpy Koneru (India)
Birth Year: 1987
Rating: 2621
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 2
Hou Yifan (China)
Birth Year: 1994
Rating: 2571
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 3
Antoaneta Stefanova (Bulgaria)
Birth Year: 1979
Rating: 2557
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 4
Pia Cramling (Sweden)
Birth Year: 1963
Rating: 2548
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 5
Marie Sebag (France)
Birth Year: 1986
Rating: 2529
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 9
Maia Chiburdanidze (Georgia)
Birth Year: 1961
Rating: 2518
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 9
Zhao Xue (China)
Birth Year: 1985
Rating: 2508
Title: Grandmaster (GM)
World ranking (Women): 11
Elina Danielian (Armenia)
Birth Year: 1978
Rating: 2496
Title: International Master
World ranking (Women): 16
Shen Yang (China)
Birth Year: 1989
Rating: 2448
Title: Women Grandmaster (WGM)
World ranking (Women): 39
Martha Lorena Fierro Baquero
Birth Year: 1977
Rating: 2403
Title: International Master
World ranking (Women): 64
Zeinab Mamedyarova (Azerbaijan)
Birth Year: 1983
Rating: 2362
Title: Woman Grandmaster (WGM)
World ranking (Women): 103
Betül Cemre Yildiz (Turkey)
Birth Year: 1989
Rating: 2214
Title: Woman International Master
World ranking (Women): 426

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