2017 Chess Calendar by Colin McGourty

Jan 11, 2017, 8:27 PM |

2017 is a chess year without a World Championship match or an Olympiad, but it’s set to be packed with events. We have the World Cup, the World and European Team Championships as well as two major competing series. After the FIDE Grand Prix in 2016 was postponed all four events are set to be crammed into 2017, alongside five Grand Chess Tour events. Then, of course, we have all the traditional events, including Tata Steel Chess and the Gibraltar Masters this January.




Many traditional events such as Shamkir Chess, the Bilbao Masters or the Qatar Masters are missing from this list, since we don't yet have news on when they'll take place in 2017, while we're also, for instance, missing the many Chinese events we can expect to fill out the chess calendar. We'll continue updating the calendar throughout the year.

Current and upcoming tournaments:

January 2017    

January 14 - 29 | Tata Steel Chess | Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands



Carlsen and Karjakin will meet again in Wijk aan Zee | photo: official website 


The 79th edition of the traditional curtain raiser to the chess year features the World Champion and his recent Challenger in a 14-man field: Carlsen, So, Karjakin, Aronian, Giri, Nepomniachtchi, Harikrishna, Eljanov, Wojtaszek, Andreikin, Rapport, Wei Yi, Van Wely and Adhiban. The Challengers also has 14 players and includes World Junior Champion Jeffery Xiong. 

Peter Svidler, Jan Gustafsson and Lawrence Trent will commentate here on chess24.

Links: official website, chess24: Masters | Challengers

January 24 - February 2 | Tradewise Gibraltar Masters | Gibraltar

The 15th edition of the Gibraltar tournament features Top 10 players Caruana, MVL and Nakamura in a 250-player 10-round open. The top prize is £23,000, while the £15,000 on offer for the top woman has again attracted Women's World Champion Hou Yifan and a host of other top female players.



15 years of chess on the rock | image: official website


Links: official website

January 26 – February 6 | Moscow Open | Moscow, Russia

The traditional event in Moscow has seen 1,500 players take part in eight separate tournaments in recent years, with the top open event attracting dozens of titled players.

Links: official website

February 2017

February 10 - March 5 | Women’s World Chess Championship | Tehran, Iran

This 64-player knockout will produce a new Women's World Champion, since reigning champ Hou Yifan has chosen not to take part. The Iranian venue has proved controversial, with Nazi Paikidze, Irina Krush and Mariya Muzychuk among the players to drop out citing concerns about security and the local laws requiring women to wear a hijab.

February 17 - 28 | Sharjah FIDE Grand Prix | Sharjah, UAE

The 1st stage of the 2017 FIDE Grand Prix series that will determine two players for the 2018 Candidates Tournament. Each of the four tournaments is a 9-round Swiss Open with 18 players drawn from the 24 participants. Each player is required to play three events.

February 21 - March 1 | Aeroflot Open | Moscow, Russia

This 15th edition of this 9-round open in the Cosmos Hotel in Moscow will again attract a formidable field in its top section reserved for players rated 2500 and above. The total guaranteed prize fund is EUR 140,000, with the winner qualifying for the Dortmund supertournament.    

Links: official website



Caruana won the 2016 US Championship, though the highlight was the 4-man blitz tournament with Caruana, So, Kasparov (!) and eventual winner Nakamura | photo: Lennart Ootes, St. Louis Chess Club


March 2017

March 27 - April 11 | US Championships | St. Louis, USA

The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis will once again be hosting the national championships for men and women, with Fabiano Caruana and Nazi Paikidze looking to defend their titles.

Links: official website

April 2007

April 8 - 16 | 17th Bangkok Chess Club Open | Cha-am, Thailand

This 9-round open, this year being held in a Thai beach resort, has again attracted former champions Nigel Short, Paco Vallejo, Wang Hao and of course chess24's Jan Gustafsson.



The Bangkok Chess Club Open consistently has the best photo shoots... here with Nigel Short and Sophie Milliet | photo: official website


Links: official website

April 10 - 23 | European Women's Chess Championship | Riga, Latvia

An 11-round open tournament in which the top European women compete not only for a first prize of EUR 75,000 but for 14 spots in the next Women's World Championship tournament.

Links: official website

April 12 - 17 | Korchnoi Zurich Chess Challenge | Zurich, Switzerland

The 2017 Zurich Chess Challenge is being held in memory of Viktor Korchnoi and is accompanied by a 7-round open. The main event features Kramnik, Anand, Nakamura, Nepomniachtchi, Svidler, Gelfand, Oparin and Pelletier playing seven rounds of neo-classical chess (45 min + 30 sec) followed by 7 rounds of rapid chess (10 + 5).



The 8-man line-up, after Oparin qualified from the Nutcracker Tournament and Gelfand was drafted in when MVL pulled out | photos: official website


Links: official website

April 13-17 | GRENKE Chess | Karlsruhe, Germany

The 9-round GRENKE Chess Open has been confirmed for this Easter and may take place alongside the GRENKE Chess Classic, featuring some of the world's top players.

Links: official website


April 19 - 27 | Reykjavik Open | Reykjavik, Iceland

This major 10-round open is celebrating its 32nd edition, with players such as Jobava, Shirov, Kamsky and Vidit already confirmed.

Links: official website

April 30 - May 11 | Russian Team Championship | Sochi, Russia

One of the world's strongest team events sees Russian teams compete for local honours and a place in the European Club Cup.

Links: official website

May 2017

May 11 - 22 | Moscow FIDE Grand Prix | Moscow, Russia

The 2nd stage of the 2017 FIDE Grand Prix series that will determine two players for the 2018 Candidates Tournaments. Each of the four tournaments is a 9-round Swiss Open with 18 players drawn from the 24 participants. Each player is required to play three events.

May 11 - 22 | Asian Individual Championship | Chengdu, China

The significance of this event has grown in importance given the rise of China and especially India as chess superpowers.

May 18 - 28 | French Top 12 Team Championship | France

Another strong team event, with 12 teams and many international stars battling it out over 11 rounds to become the 2017 French Team Championship

May 29 - June 10 | European Championship | Minsk, Belarus

The European Individual Championship will again be a battle both for the prestige of becoming European Champion and for a place in the World Cup.

June 2017

June 5 - 17 | Altibox Norway Chess | Stavanger, Norway



Jan Gustafsson and Peter Svidler were commentating at the venue as Magnus Carlsen finally won his home supertournament | photo: Jose Huwaidi


The 5th edition of the Norwegian supertournament will again be a 10-player round-robin featuring some of the world's best players, with World Champion Magnus Carlsen already confirmed alongside Sergey Karjakin, Vishy Anand, Levon Aronian, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and now Hikaru Nakamura:



Links: official website

June 18 - 27 | World Team Championship | Khanty-Mansiyk, Russia

Both the Open and Women's World Team Championship are being held in the same venue in 2017, though the prestigious biennial team event will face tough competition from the other events it clashes with. The 10-team round-robin features the best international teams and has often been considered tougher than the Olympiad due to the absence of weaker teams.  

June 18 - 26 | Paris Grand Chess Tour | Paris, France

The 1st stage of the 2017 Grand Chess Tour features three days of rapid and two days of blitz chess as some of the world's best players compete for a $150,000 prize fund and Grand Chess Tour points. The nine regular tour players are Carlsen, Kramnik, MVL, So, Nakamura, Caruana, Nepomniachtchi, Karjakin and Anand, with four wild cards set to join them in this event.



The Grand Chess Tour schedule for 2017


Links: official website

June 24 - July 5 | Russian Championship Higher League | Russia

This fiercely competitive open is a qualifying tournament for the Russian Championship Superfinal.

Links: official website

June 26 - July 3 | Your Next Move Grand Chess Tour | Leuven, Belgium

The second stage of the Grand Chess Tour in Leuven Town Hall once again follows hot on the heels of the event in Paris and has exactly the same format and $150,000 prize fund.

Links: official website

July 2017 

July 3 - 16 | Geneva FIDE Grand Prix | Geneva, Switzerland

The 3rd stage of the 2017 FIDE Grand Prix series that will determine two players for the 2018 Candidates Tournaments. Each of the four tournaments is a 9-round Swiss Open with 18 players drawn from the 24 participants. Each player is required to play three events.

July 15 - 23 | Sparkassen Chess Meeting Vladimir Kramnik Tournament | Dortmund, Germany

This year's Dortmund super tournament, the 45th edition, will be dedicated to 10-time winner Vladimir Kramnik, who is celebrating 25 years since he first played the event.



Kramnik-Buhmann was many people's game of 2017, even though it ended in a draw! | photo: official website


Links: official website

July 29 - August 6 | British Championship | Llandudno, UK

In 2017 the British Championship is being held in Llandudno, Wales and is a shorter 9-round event.

Links: official website

July 31 – August 12 | Sinquefield Cup | Saint Louis, USA

The 5th edition of the Sinquefield Cup is again a classical 10-player single round-robin taking place in the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis. It serves as the third stage of the 2017 Grand Chess Tour and boasts a $300,000 prize fund as well as the tour points on offer. A wild card player will join the tour regulars Carlsen, Kramnik, MVL, So, Nakamura, Caruana, Nepomniachtchi, Karjakin and Anand.

Links: official website

August 2017

August 1 - 14 | Russian Championship Superfinal | Russia

The final event of the Russian Championships will determine the 2017 Russian Open and Women's Champions.

Links: official website

August 13 - 20 | Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz | Saint Louis, USA

This new event on the 2017 Grand Chess Tour will follow on from the 2017 Sinquefield Cup in the same venue and feature the same rapid and blitz format and $150,000 prize fund as the events in Paris and Leuven earlier in the year. Again there will be four wildcards.

Links: official website

August 21 - 31 | World Cadets Championship | Brasilia, Brazil

This event features the World Youth Championships for the Under 8, U10 and U12 age groups for both boys and girls.

September 2017

September 1 - 25 | Chess World Cup | Batumi, Georgia

The biennial World Cup is a 128-player knockout consisting of six rounds of two-game knockout matches (with rapid and blitz playoffs where required) followed by a four-game final - which will be held in Tbilisi. The winner earns $120,000, while both finalists qualify for the 2018 Candidates Tournament.



We can safely say the final is unlikely to live up to Svidler-Karjakin in the 2015 World Cup in Baku!


September 12 - 20 | French Championship | France

Matthieu Cornette and Sophie Milliet are the reigning French Champions.

September 16 - 26 | World Youth Championship (U14-18) | Montevideo, Uruguay

The Under 14, Under 16 and Under 18 World Youth Championships for both boys and girls are 11-round events taking place in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo.

October 2017

October 1 - 16 | World Junior Championship | Tarviso, Italy

The most prestigious junior event of 2017 is the Open World Junior Championship and the Girls event that accompanies it, open to players ages 20 and below.

October 2 - 6 | Russian Rapid and Blitz Championships | Sochi, Russia

The Olympic city of Sochi is once again hosting the fiercely competitive Russian speed chess events.

Links: official website

October 7 - 15 | European Club Cup | Manavgat, Turkey

The big annual European club event is again a 7-round open where teams compete over six boards. Alkaloid (Ding Liren, Andreikin, Eljanov and co.) will be looking to defend their title.

October 27 - November 7 | European Team Chess Championship | Crete, Greece

The biennial team event for European chess federations saw a golden double for the Russian men's and women's teams when the event was last held in Reykjavik in 2015.

November 2017

November 6 - 19 | World Senior Championship | Acqui Terme, Italy

The 2017 World Senior events for men and women in 50+ and 65+ categories is taking place in the same Italian spa town in which it was held in 2015.

November 15 - 26 | Palma de Mallorca FIDE Grand Prix | Palma de Mallorca, Spain

The 4rd and final stage of the 2017 FIDE Grand Prix series that will determine two players for the 2018 Candidates Tournaments. Each of the four tournaments is a 9-round Swiss Open with 18 players drawn from the 24 participants. Each player is required to play three events.