Shankland Wins Northern California Int'l

  • SonofPearl
  • on 1/9/12, 11:02 AM.

Sam Shankland 3.jpg The 2012 Northern California International ran from  2-8 January at the NorCal House of Chess at Northwestern Polytechnic University.

The competition was a 9-round Swiss organised by Arun Sharma and Ted Castro, giving GM and IM title norm opportunities for the 60+ strong field, including some familiar names to members!

The time control was 40 moves in 90 minutes, then 30 minutes to finish with a 30 second increment.

GM Sam Shankland (pictured) took clear first place with a score of 7 points and pocketed a prize of $3,000. His victory over ratings favourite Georg Meier in round seven was crucial.

The top standings:

Name  Elo Tot 
1 GM Sam Shankland  2565 7.0
2 GM Alejandro Ramirez  2594 6.5
3 GM Josh Friedel  2523 6.5
4 IM Marc Arnold  2482 6.5
5 GM Georg Meier  2671 6.0
6 GM Bartlomiej Macieja  2617 6.0
7 GM Yury Shulman  2598 6.0
8 GM Axel Bachmann  2560 6.0
9 GM Giorgi Margvelashvili  2531 6.0
10 IM Mackenzie Molner  2449 6.0
11 IM Daniel Rensch  2401 6.0
12 IM Greg Shahade  2463 5.5
13 IM Ricardo de Guzman  2393 5.5
14 IM Justin Sarkar  2370 5.5
15 WGM Tatev Abrahamyan  2287 5.5
16 NM Yian Liou  2283 5.5
17 FM Kayden Troff  2257 5.5
18 IM Enrico Sevillano  2490 5.0
19 IM Sam Collins  2426 5.0
20 IM Larry Remlinger  2402 5.0
21 SM Faik Aleskerov  2362 5.0
22 FM Teddy Coleman  2356 5.0
23 NM Damir Studen  2248 5.0
24 IM Adam Hunt  2462 4.5
25 IM Bryan Smith  2460 4.5
26 IM Max Cornejo  2411 4.5
27 IM David Pruess  2395 4.5
28 NM Tigran Ishkhanov  2350 4.5
29 IM Angelo Young  2325 4.5
30 FM Erik Santarius  2276 4.5


GM Alejandro Ramirez
GM Josh Friedel
Alejandro_Ramirez.jpg Josh_Friedel_North_Cal_Intl_2012.jpg
IM Marc Arnold
WGM Tatev Abrahamyan
Marc_Arnold_North_Cali_Intl_2012.jpg Tatev_Abrahamyan.jpg









Photos by Inga Gurevich from the official website. More photos here. The full standings with round-by-round results can be found here.

11109 reads 21 comments
2 votes


  • 5 years ago


    Good job Kayden Troff,I saw your game with Bryan Smith it was nice.-AkshitaWink

  • 5 years ago


    Nice games guys, good show.

  • 5 years ago


    To the people who didn't get norms because of the foreign players rule--

    You've proven that you can play well enough to earn it, so just stay sharp and the norms will come!

  • 5 years ago


    Nice display of these games from begin to end. 

  • 5 years ago


    europes not that small arunsh! :P. seems an unfortunate tale though. Hard luck to monsieur rensch - checking his game against ramirez, was rac1 the main error? I'm not totally sure (its his only move that appears to lack determinable flexibility mainly because Im not totally certain of the right line!) e6,e5 certainly surprising, good plan to eliminate the d6 main defender but it caused this amazing idea by ramirez how he uses his knights is really exciting, hard luck danny and great tournament :D.

    p.s are we going to get a vid series by shanky on this tourney :D the last series by the shankinator, or aardshark or AK40shankland as he's known on the streets, was pretty good leko whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?! again well done chaps.

  • 5 years ago


    Sam! Bam!

  • 5 years ago

    FM Lalu

    To answer a few questions regarding the foreign players.

    We actually had 6 foreign players drop out in the last ten days prior to the event (bringing us down from 25 to 19) which left us just short of the 20 needed for the Super Swiss status.  We were desperately trying to find someone who could fill that void at the last minute, but then the day before the event, one of our foreign players, WIM Viktorija Ni, had her federation change to the US (to enable her to play in the US Women's Championship) go through, which cost us another foreigner.  I certainly mean nothing against her by saying that, playing in the US Women's Championship is definitely a big deal, it just was a very unfortunate last minute change for our tournament.  Needing two foreign players on one day's notice, well was just no way to do it.

    In regards to finding foreign players last minute or having more foreigners to begin with - it's not that simple!  This is a big problem norm events in the US have in general (a big reason more norm events are not run in the US). In Europe it's easy to find many players who are probably an hour or less away who are of other federations.  In the US your source is mostly those who are already in the country who are still of some other federation or those who happen to be visiting the country at the time - you can't just call someone up last minute from some other country and get them to play on 1-2 days notice!  I did everything I could to get as many foreign players as possible, just with a lot of bad luck we fell a bit short of the goal.

    It was frustrating to have that happen, but other than that (which unfortunately cost a couple of people norms they definitely earned), I was very happy with the way the event went.

  • 5 years ago


    @sonofpearl  "Yes, I'd seen that article and it would be nice to have confirmation of all the norms now that the tournament is completed."

    Here you go

  • 5 years ago

    GM KaydenTroff

    It is sad, but the TDs truly did the best they could to make it happen.  They had enough foreign players in the tournament to make it a super swiss, (so that people didn't actually have to play foreign players in the tournament) but a lot of foreigners withdrew last minute and they got a few more, but not enough to still make it a super swiss. 

    The performance rating I had (almost high enough for a GM Norm) even if I lost my last two rounds, but I had not played enough foreigners.  I think Tatev Abrahamyan also had the performance rating, but needed to play one more foreigner.

  • 5 years ago


    Way 2 go Shanky and Danny!!!

  • 5 years ago

    IM Fins0905

    Very impressive performances from Sam and Kayden!  Danny did pretty well too.  I think Tatev Abramhyan made an IM norm.  Very unfortunate that Kayden wasn't similarly rewarded for his spectacular effort.

    @gauranga: I believe FIDE forbids the alteration of pairings for norm purposes.  Thus, it basically turns in to a crap-shoot when you have less than the required norm of foreign players and people are competing for norms.  FIDE really needs to do something about this rule.

  • 5 years ago

    FM gauranga

    hm, that's upsetting about Kayden. Why don't they have more foreign players in such norm tournaments? And why didn't they change the pairings in the last few rounds a bit so that Kayden (and others) would have played more of the foreign players that were there?

  • 5 years ago


    Way to go Sam!  Tremendous tournament performance.

  • 5 years ago


    @ Blind_Demon - thanks. Yes, I'd seen that article and it would be nice to have confirmation of all the norms now that the tournament is completed.

  • 5 years ago


    @strategyking and @sonofpearl

    Some of the kids such as Kayden Troff who would have easily earned an IM norm were unfortunately passed over for it because of the "Four foreigners required in a 9 round event" norm requirement.


  • 5 years ago


    @ strategyKing420 -  I was wondering the same thing. Unfortunately, I don't have that info, sorry.

  • 5 years ago


    Does anyone know if any of the players in this tournament are looking at receiving a norm?

  • 5 years ago


      Way to go Shanky!!  I hope Danny gets enough rest for the 3-hour bullet festival vs. David in a couple of days. That alone, while doing at broadcast at the same time.

       He better have enough nuts, raisins and water if not a giant mug of coffee Cool


Back to Top

Post your reply: