USCF Rated Daily Chess Tournament on!


Harnessing the Power of the Pyramid in Chess

 Does the secret to rapid chess improvement lie deep inside the shape of a Pyramid? California chess coach and correspondence chess master Chris Torres believes so and is inviting chess players everywhere to harness the “Power of the Pyramid in Chess!”

 Starting on June 1, 2021, chess players of all ages and skill levels can participate in a first-of-its-kind US Chess rated correspondence pyramid tournament on

 Why correspondence chess?

Correspondence Chess (called Daily Chess on is an important tool Chris Torres uses to catalyze chess improvement in his top students. Almost immediate positive effects can be seen in students new to correspondence chess because each player has significantly more time per move which results in more careful play and thus higher quality games. He explains that:

“Even experienced chess players can improve upon their thought process by taking notes of their calculations during correspondence games and then, after each game finishes, analyze their game as well as their thinking.”

Finally, correspondence chess is an ideal format to both practice new openings and to test endgame knowledge. 

Why the Pyramid Structure?

Most chess club directors understand the advantages of using a stepladder style chess tournament as a means to accurately measure the abilities of their players in an ongoing event. Of course, a stepladder tournament has its limitations and one of them is players frequently being paired against the same players who are stuck around their level. Through the desire to create a unique tournament experience, Torres decided upon expanding the simple stepladder into a full-fledged pyramid event. He believes that the pyramid structure could greatly benefit a stepladder style tournament by adding more opponent variety as well as increasing motivation through leveling-up goals. His theory is that by morphing the stepladder into a pyramid structure, an organizer could get all the same benefits of a stepladder format with enhanced variety and player motivation.

To test this, Torres formalized his idea into a plan to offer a new kind of rated correspondence chess experience and presented his plan to the United States Chess Federation’s Correspondence Chess Working Group. After fulfilling the requirements necessary to launch this groundbreaking initiative, Daily Chess Musings, Torres’ affiliate, has been granted permission by the United States Chess Federation to perform the first affiliate organized rated correspondence chess tournament on

So how will this format work?

The central hub for players to register, check standings and request matches will be, a website run by Torres. All pyramid games will be played on under the Daily Chess Musings Rated Correspondence Pyramid as Daily Chess matches. When a game finishes, the players will record their results on Chris Torres will then regularly submit all recorded results to be rated by the United States Chess Federation.

A pyramid style stepladder is something that is unfamiliar to most chess players and thus requires a brief explanation. In a nutshell, Players may only challenge somebody who is placed above them on the same level, or who is on one of the four levels immediately above them. For example, a player on Level 20 can challenge anybody placed above him or her on Level 20, or anybody on Levels 16 through 19 inclusive. Therefore, the #1 player may only be challenged by somebody on Level 5 or above.

Why should I join?

By playing in the Daily Chess Musings Rated Correspondence Pyramid, you can not only have fun, meet new people, and improve your chess abilities, but also help to increase the scope and popularity of correspondence chess across the nation!

In order to play in the Correspondence Pyramid participants must:

  • Remain current members of the US Chess Federation
  • Have or create a account
  • Join the Daily Chess Musings Rated Correspondence Pyramid on
  • Pay a one-time entry fee of $25
  • Pay a $5 renewal fee every additional year they wish to participate
So playing in these tournaments will help establish a USCF rating? Or no
Yes, By playing in this tournament you will establish an official United States Chess Federation correspondence chess rating.
But why the $25 entry fee :/
Because organizing, running and rating a tournament sanctioned by an official governing body for chess competition has associated fees. In return, however, the rating you establish in this event will be an official United States Chess Federation rating.
Viznik wrote:
But why the $25 entry fee :/



This is the guy who's a 1370 USCF player but a "correspondence Master"? How does a guy who's an adult beginner have an online or correspondence rating that's 900 points higher? He's a cheat plain and simple!


For those who are interested. The chess world is full of people like this - guy's who aren't able to gain an understanding or skill in chess, but wanting the attention they put themselves out there as "teachers" or "coaches!" It's ubiquitous, particularly in the U.S.


Are you sure this is allowed? I don't think USCF has a correspondence chess time control.


Sounds like a pyramid scheme to me...