First rapid and blitz rating lists to appear July 1st, 2012

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage

The first official FIDE rapid and blitz rating lists will be published on July 1st, 2012. The World Chess Federation plans to publish new lists every month. For the first list, rapid and blitz tournaments can be rated per January 1st, 2012. All this was published last Wednesday at the FIDE website. We might as well copy the full text here:

The Executive Board meeting in Krakow approved the launch of "Rapid" and "Blitz" rating lists in 2012. We hope that all federations will take note of the regulations regarding these lists, and that they will ensure that tournament organisers in their nations are informed, as well as encouraging them to register their rapid and blitz events for FIDE rating.

It is hoped that tournaments of all standards will be submitted, not just those of a high level. It will be possible for players without any current FIDE rating to enter the rapidplay or blitz list by playing games against rated opponents. All FIDE rating fees for these events will be waived during 2012. The framework of the new lists will be as follows:

Tournaments commencing on or after 1st January 2012 may be registered. This should be done as early as possible, but not later than two days before the start.

The Laws to be followed will be as set out in the Laws of Chess, Appendices A and B. All "Rapidplay" games will be eligible for rating. That is, each player must have at least 15 minutes, but less than 60 minutes thinking time; or the time allotted + 60 times any increment or delay is at least 15 minutes, but less than 60 minutes for each player. Only those "blitz" games where each player has at least five minutes, but less than 15 minutes, after adjustment for any increment or delay mode, will be rated. Thus, the time control of 3 minutes plus 2 second increment or all the moves in 5 minutes is acceptable. Both players must have the same allotted time.

For players with existing FIDE ratings, their initial rating on both of the new lists will be that rating. Their rapidplay or blitz ratings will be adjusted depending on their results in those forms of chess.

The method used to calculate ratings in each list will be the same as currently used, with the exception that the K factor used will in all cases be 20. For unrated players this has the effect their rating, if they score higher than 50%, becomes Ra +10 for each half point above 50%, with a maximum of 400. If any player plays 35 games or more in a period, his new rating will be based solely on those games.

The first pair of new lists will be published at 1st July 2012. It is anticipated that there will by then have been enough tournaments rated for the new ratings to be meaningful. Thereafter, lists will be published on the 1st of each month. The minimum rating for these lists will be 1000, in line with the lowered floor in the main list.

New rules will be added for players who play more than 35 games in one rating period; or for new players who play a large number of games, to reduce the swings in Rating. Amendments may be needed to the regulations in the light of experience in the first six months of 2012.

Decisions concerning any charges for either tournaments or players from 1st January 2013 will be made at the FIDE Congress in Istanbul in 2012. Federations are reminded that it will be possible to remove players from the new lists if the financial burden causes them too many problems.

Nigel Freeman (Executive Director), Mikko Markkula (Chairman Qualification Commission), Nick Faulks (Secretary Qualification Commission), Stewart Reuben (Secretary Qualification Commission)

It makes sense that FIDE decided not to rate tournament organized before January 1st, as players would not be aware that they had played rated games. By publishing the first list only on July 1st, FIDE wants to avoid putting up a list with too few games and therefore without much interest.

The frequency of publishing new lists every month is in line with the planned monthly publication of the general rating list.

As we were informed, there hasn't been decided anything conclusive about the K-factor. FIDE intends to analyze the results of the 2011 European Rapid Championship and make a decision at a later stage. The subject of special rapid/blitz titles (IM? GM?) will also be discussed later.

An important final point to note is that no fees will be levied on rapid or blitz events in 2012.

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