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Tournaments with Timur: The Games!
After Vegas, Timur stayed overnight in Austin at Mom's before heading to his next event.

Tournaments with Timur: The Games!

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After our road trip, Marck and I finally arrived in California to play some chess! 

We mainly focused on the Southern California Open, but Timur also gave a blindfold simul.

I won at rock paper scissors! The prize was this fun mask.

Chessable played this last game for me. Basically 100% prep plus simple technique!

It was nice to peak despite blundering in round 5. I'm still learning the King Postulate theory!


That was fun. Onward to the Iowa Open! We stayed with Eric Vigil at his house.

Eric takes his job of running Iowa chess seriously.

My favorite game of the tournament was the following loss.

I'm not happy with how I finished the event, though losses can be more instructive than wins.


After some mountain climbing, it was time for the Las Vegas Open!

No Timur, I won't jump! John Curcuru and I are going back down.

Here is an interesting puzzle from round 1!

AlphaZero's h-pawn has revolutionized chess dynamics and everyone has been trying to apply it since GM Matthew Saddler and WIM Natasha Regan wrote the excellent book Game Changer. IM Aditya Mittal discusses AlphaZero's h-pawn in his blog, and Timur showed me this video while we were in the hotel, so I was itching to try it in a game. Unfortunately, I misplayed the resulting position, but the h-pawn push was sound, and I learned a lot! Here is the full game.

Timur got to apply AlphaZero's h-pawn with more success:

The end result was far from ideal, but I can't say that I'm too surprised. I had COVID some months ago, and people told me that post-COVID-fatigue would reduce my endurance. I'm still glad for the opportunity to play. At least I had good results near the beginning of this trip!


Timur kept going and invited me to Indianapolis and Chicago, but I needed a break to regain my energy. So after three weeks off, we went on a trip to Saint Louis and Kansas! 

The Kansas City Renaissance Festival was fun!

I would have played the Spice Cup, but I already had plans with IM Yaacov Norowitz. Yaacov just arrived in Nashville to record two Chessable courses on the Stonewall and Caro-Kann.


I'm temporarily offering a discount on private lessons with the coupon '5off' to fund further trips with Timur and other chess opportunities. You can book a free trial lesson here!