FIDE World Rapid & Blitz Championships

  • SonofPearl
  • on 6/3/12, 1:09 AM.

fide_official_logo-gens-una-sumus cropped.jpgThe World Blitz & Rapid Chess Championships will be held from 1-11 July 2012 in Astana, Kazakhstan.

The championships start with qualification events.  The rapid qualification event is a 9 round Swiss over 2 days, and the blitz event is an 11 double rounds Swiss completed in a day.  All players must be rated over 2300 Elo.

The rapid final will be a 16-player round robin event (double round robin for the blitz) with players selected as follows:

  • The top 10 players on the January 2012 rating list
  • The 3 top finishers in the semi-final qualifiers
  • 2 nominees of the organisers
  • 1 nominee of the FIDE President

The top 10 in January 2012 looked like this:

 Name Country Rating
1  Carlsen, Magnus  NOR 2835
2  Aronian, Levon  ARM 2805
3  Kramnik, Vladimir  RUS 2801
4  Anand, Viswanathan  IND 2799
5  Radjabov, Teimour  AZE 2773
6  Topalov, Veselin  BUL 2770
7  Karjakin, Sergey  RUS 2769
8  Ivanchuk, Vassily  UKR 2766
9  Morozevich, Alexander  RUS 2763
10  Gashimov, Vugar  AZE 2761


If any of the top 10 rated players decline their invitation, then they will be replaced by the next highest rated players on the January 2012 rating list.

The time control for the rapid championships is 15 minutes plus 10 second increment, and the time control for the blitz championship is 3 minutes plus 2 second increment.

The total prize funds are $200,000 for the rapid championships, and another $200,000 for the blitz championship (see distribution below).

Place Prize
Winner $40,000
2nd place $33,000
3rd place $27,500
4th place $22,500
5th place $18,000
6th place $14,000
7th place $12,000
8th place $10,000
9th place $7,000
10th place $4,000
11th-16th place $2,000 each


Interestingly, two players that just miss out on automatic qualification by rating are both noted rapid/blitz experts - #11 rated Alexander Grischuk and #12 Hikaru Nakamura.  They will have to earn their place in the qualifying event, or rely on being one of the three nominated players.

The full schedule:

Date Event Round
1 July Arrival
2 July Rapid Qualifiers 1-5
3 July Rapid Qualifiers 6-9
4 July Blitz Qualifiers 11*2
5 July Opening Ceremony
6 July Rapid Finals 1-5
7 July Rapid Finals 6-10
8 July Rapid Finals 11-15
9 July Blitz Finals 1-15
10 July Blitz Finals 16-30
11 July Departure


FIDE announcement here.

5055 reads 17 comments
4 votes


  • 4 years ago


    Wow - two Rapid Chess Championships a year! Chess sure is changing.

  • 4 years ago


    Aronian has won this before if i recall correctly so if he's in the lineup this year and since its already been said Carlsen will be cutting it close with another tournament and might not make it. My money is then all on Aronian.

  • 4 years ago


    Fast chess is very different from regular chess, I am not sure Carlsen or Aronian will win this; if I had to guess, I would chose Nakamura. 

  • 4 years ago


    carlsen-aronian ; always comes down to them two lol

  • 4 years ago


    My money is on Naka.

  • 4 years ago


    any americans are going to participate on the qualifier? Wish to see Shankland, Kamsky and Rench in action

  • 4 years ago


    According to the regulations, ties are broken by:

    1. Results between the players involved
    2. Number of wins
    3. Sonneborn-Berger score
    4. Sudden death game

    @ WestofHolywood - no nude mud wrestling, which I'm sure is a relief to us all Laughing

  • 4 years ago



  • 4 years ago


    If there is a tie for first is the championship decided by four classical games?

    If there is still a tie after four classical games is the championship decided by four correspondence games?

    If there is still a tie after four correspondence games is the championship decided by nude mud wrestling?

  • 4 years ago


    "I hope none declines it (including the exhausted Anand!)"

    Anand, Carlsen, Radjabov, Karjakin and Ivanchuk are playing a tournament in Romania that ends the 4th, might be tough to play again a couple of days later, especially for Carlsen and Radjabov who have just a couple of days between Tal Memorial and Romania (edited post).

  • 4 years ago


    Wow, I wonder if most of the top 10 will actually be there, I hope none declines it (including the exhausted Anand!) and this turns into a serious tradition with lots of fun!

  • 4 years ago


    I'll rapidly pick Magnus ftw.

  • 4 years ago


    Didn't Anand just win that?

  • 4 years ago


    I thought Naka finished in the top five last time. 

  • 4 years ago


    It would be remiss of me not to mention that the Women's rapid and blitz world championships are currently in full swing in Georgia.

    Coverage is available here.

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