Grand Chess Tour (2015)
International Chess Circuit for 2015 launched in St Louis
Mark Crowther - Friday 24th April 2015
Magnus Carlsen to play a new Chess Circuit. | http://www.shamkirchess.az
An International Chess Circuit called the "Grand Chess Tour" for 2015 was launched at a press conference in St Louis on 24th April 2015. There will be three 10 player events, each with $300,000 in prize money. The final total prize money for the series comes to over $1,000,000 with bonuses of $50,000 from each event being paid into a pool for the combined standings. These events are: Norway Chess 15-26 June, the Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis 21st August - 3rd September and the London Chess Classic 3rd-14th December 2015. There are already plans for a 2016 circuit which they hope will include an event in Indonesia, and envisage taking the series global. They've tried to avoid scheduling conflicts.
9 players compete in all three events and an additional wild card player for each tournament (also entitled to points for the series). 8/9 of the players have been announced they are: Magnus Carlsen, Fabiano Caruana, Alexander Grischuk, Veselin Topalov, Viswanathan Anand, Levon Aronian, Anish Giri, Hikaru Nakamura. The invitations were based on top 10 January 2015 rating list. Vladimir Kramnik was invited but declined the invitation because his schedule is already very crowded (three more was too many and he is serious about trying to qualify from the World Cup) but would have liked to play some of them. Maxine Vachier-Lagrave has some scheduling problems in competing in the series but sounded hopeful about playing. Announcement within a week.
Garry Kasparov was involved in its creation and he plays Nigel Short 25th-26th April 2015 in Rapid and Blitz to help launch it. Kasparov is "the man who took the initiative" in its creation and advised the organisers.
Initial news via Tarjei J. Svensen @TarjeiJS on twitter and from
Press conference on 24th April took place at 21:00 BST 15:00 St Louis time.
More news: Chess24.