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Whatever happened to Josh Waitzkin? Is he still playing chess. I have been out of the chess community for a time (10 years) and haven't read anything about him lately.
Etienne, I heard Josh made some disparaging remarks about chess, something perhaps regarding the stress it puts on young minds? I can't remember exactly what it was, I only remember his comments did not paint a pretty picture of chess itself. I was wondering if he was talking about chess specifically, or perhaps tournament chess and the pressure to succeed?
Do you or anybody else have any information on what he might have said?
Despite his early promise, his rating stalled at the 2400 level. After struggling from 1994 to 1999 to become a GM he gave up competitve chess. I think his fame from Searching for Bobby Fischer has done him well, though. He recently wrote a book, starred in the Chessmaster series, hosted a Hip Hop Chess event, and won some big Tai Chi events.
Here's his rating history, according to Chessbase:
After reaching the 2500-level prospective GMs have to achieve three norms where they perform at the 2600 level against titled players. I can't blame him for switching his focus to Tai Chi where the same effort made him into a world champion!
He's definitely a very strong player and well worth listening to. I'm looking forward to watching his Art of Learning lesson series in the new Chessmaster.
I recently read an interview of him on chesscafe.com I want to believe it was under a column about scholastic chess. It was pretty interesting and anyone that is interested in josh should look this up. It goes alot into why he left chess and also what he is doing now.
SonofPearl has a pretty cool video interview with Waitzkin on his profile page. A little lengthy, but worthwile IMO
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