When did you learn chess and who taught you?
My father taught me when I was around 7-8 years old.
When did you begin making legitimate progress in your game and How?
After age 14 when I became Bulgarian champion for boys U-14, I was more motivated and I started to work more seriously on my own with chess books. Also I had the advantage that I know very well the Russian language.
What are your top chess book recommendations?
“My system ” – A.Nimzovitsch; 2 books for “Alechin heritage ” – A.Kotov; “Interzonal Tournament Zurich” – D. Bronstein
Rest of the interview below …
Chess is not the target, Chess is a means to an end – GM Peter Genov
How did you become a GM? (What tournaments, did you have a trainer, etc..)
Really I never had a trainer… Two IM ‘s helped me (Jordan Ajanski and Peicho Peev). I always worked alone and became an IM very fast (At about 20 years old). Nowadays that’s nothing but without computers…The main problem was how to became GM – I needed 10 years (serious work alone) to jump from the IM to GM level. When I was an IM I played mainly in opens with very good results, but my level stayed the same. When I started to play more berger (closed) tournaments my level sart going up very fast. Unfortunately in the last few years closed tournaments have become very rare.
What is next in your chess career – what are your aspirations as a player/instructor/promoter/organizer, etc..?
As a chess trainer, I’d like to have champions in Greece, Cyprus, Montenegro – near everywhere where I started to work. As a chess player I think that I do not play too bad. As an organizer – I founded a new chess club and team in Bulgaria called “Lokomotiv 2000″ – Plovdiv, which is now the championship team of both men and women in Bulgaria. Ultimately, my goal is to teach our children to play good chess. Not to be world champions, but to increase their intellect. Chess is not the target – chess is the means to an end.
Nature or Nurture: Do you think top chess players are born with a natural ability/gift or do they become so talented through hard work and the right environment?
Here I can answer 50% / 50% There are many examples that show that only fantastic memory and strong spirit are not enough – also you need many trainers and to invest a lot of time and resources(ex. Karpov, Kasparov) Recently, especially without serious help from trainers, sponsors, managers and even countries it’s impossible to become a top player. I know many talented players who stop playing chess (need serious work – only have talent…) and many others without talent that work very hard…
How do you feel about cheating in chess? (specific deterrents/punishments..)
I played 6 or 7 games against players who had help from a chess engine (absolutely sure!!) and nobody (including arbiters) cared about this…I tried to speak with the organizer – no interest for this… So I am sure that this is a big problem without a solution for the moment…
Who is your favorite player and why?
Mainly my favorite player is A. Alechin [Alekhine] but I also have great respect for G.Kasparov (one time I met him and we spoke – fantastic broadcast, presence) they also never play fast – they always try to find the best move!
I encourage you all to please visit Petar Genov’s personal website.
How to be a Grandmaster Series
People always want to know how Grandmaster’s achieved the extraordinary feat of becoming a GrandMaster. I noticed most Grandmaster interview’s focus more on recent and upcoming tournament’s and do not focus on how they became a GrandMaster. While most people assume that becoming a GrandMaster is simply a formula of natural talent and hard work, we’ve discovered there is more to the secret formula. Our interview series hopes to unlock these “GrandMaster secrets” so we can learn to not only work harder, but smarter as well. Our GrandMaster Interview series includes both audio and video interviews on our YouTube as well as text interviews with corresponding games on our site. We hope you enjoy these grandmaster interviews. Comments are appreciated and if you have questions you’d like to ask future grandmasters, let us know.
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