Nakamura Wins 15th Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix

Nakamura Wins 15th Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix

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GM Hikaru Nakamura won the 15th Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix, his second week straight and already his fourth win since the start of the series. The American grandmaster beat his compatriot GM Sam Sevian 1.5-0.5 in the knockout final and continues to lead in the overall Grand Prix standings.

The next Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix will be played on September 15 at 10 a.m. Pacific / 19:00 Central Europe.

The 15th Speed Chess Grand Prix tournament was held on Tuesday, September 8, with 728 participants. It was Ukrainian GM Yuriy Kuzubov who won the Swiss part as the only player to finish on 9/10.

The live broadcast of the tournament.

With three rounds to go in the Swiss part and before moving to the knockout phase, Kuzubov was still on a perfect score with just one other participant: GM Jeffery Xiong from the United States. 

The two were paired against each other (as that's how Swiss tournaments work!), and it was Kuzubov who added yet another victory to his streak.

Two draws in the final two rounds were enough for the Ukrainian GM to "win" the tournament alone—incidentally, against the current leaders of the SCC GP, Nakamura and GM Parham Maghsoodloo.

To find interesting games, it's never a bad idea to check GM Alireza Firouzja's. This time it's a loss for the Iranian prodigy (his only loss in the Swiss part) and a thumbs-up for's Director of Portuguese Content, GM Krikor Mekhitarian.

Krikor Mekhitarian
Krikor Mekhitarian. Photo: Maria Emelianova/

Due to an early draw with GM Mikhail Golubev and a loss to GM Baadur Jobava, Nakamura absolutely had to win his final-round game vs. GM Dariusz Swiercz to keep his chances for reaching the final eight. He managed but in some hectic time-trouble.

The players who qualified for the knockout together with Firouzja, Kuzubov, Maghsoodloo, and Nakamura were GMs Sam Sevian, Vladimir Fedoseev, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, and Vladislav Artemiev. It was one of the strongest final-eight brackets we've seen so far.

September 8 Speed Chess Grand Prix | Swiss Final Standings (Top 20)

Rk Fed Title Username Name Score SB
1 GM @KuzubovYuriy Yuriy Kuzubov 9 52.5
2 GM @Konavets Sam Sevian 8.5 53.75
3 GM @Firouzja2003 Alireza Firouzja 8.5 53.5
4 GM @Hikaru Hikaru Nakamura 8.5 52.75
5 GM @Bigfish1995 Vladimir Fedoseev 8.5 52.25
6 GM @ChessWarrior7197 Nodirbek Abdusattorov 8.5 51.75
7 GM @Sibelephant Vladislav Artemiev 8.5 49.5
8 GM @Parhamov Parham Maghsoodloo 8.5 44.5
9 IM @OminousOmen Nikolas Theodorou 8.5 41
10 GM @Fandorine Maksim Chigaev 8 53
11 GM @GOGIEFF Anton Korobov 8 50.75
12 CM @jhonnyuribe jhonny uribe 8 48
13 GM @mishanick Aleksey Sarana 8 47.5
14 GM @daro94 Dariusz Swiercz 8 47
14 GM @SergeyKarjakin Sergey Karjakin 8 47
16 IM @m_ezat Mohamed Ezat 8 46
17 IM @Gloomy_Wanderer Valery Kazakouski 8 45
18 GM @AnishOnYoutube Anish Giri 8 43.75
19 GM @jefferyx Jeffery Xiong 8 43.5
20 GM @sergiochess83 Sergey Grigoriants 8 39.5

Nakamura defeated Fedoseev and Kuzubov before facing Sevian in the final. The latter had eliminated one of the absolute favorites, Artemiev, by flagging his opponent in a totally lost position in their second game.

Sevian's final move was made with his last remaining pawn, and because that one was still on the board, the system automatically and ruthlessly declared the game lost for Artemiev, abiding to the Laws of Chess.

That b7-pawn reminds of Jan Hein Donner's famous love letter to his pawn on a5 from his game with Dragoljub Velimirovic (Havana 1971), in which the Dutch grandmaster calls it his "sweet little thing" and "you little rascal."

Nakamura won his fourth(!) Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix since early June by beating Sevian in the first game of the final (thanks to a nice trick) and drawing the second.

Nakamura won the $1,000 first prize and 12 GP points while Sevian took second ($500 and eight GP points). Abduattorov and Kuzubov both won $200 and four GP points, while the losing quarterfinalists each earned $100 and two GP points. 

GM Kateryna Lagno (@KaterynaLagno) won the $100 prize for being the top-scoring female player.

Below are the current Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix standings. At the end of the season, the players with the four best scores will advance to the Speed Chess Championship to be hosted later this year.

Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix | Standings After September 8 (Top 20)

# Fed Title Name Username Swiss
1 GM Hikaru Nakamura @Hikaru 68 52 120
2 GM Parham Maghsoodloo @Parhamov 68 24 92
3 GM Vladislav Artemiev @Sibelephant 51 38 89
4 GM Haik Martirosyan @Micki-taryan 59.5 28 87.5
5 GM Alireza Firouzja @Firouzja2003 65 14 79
6 GM Vladislav Kovalev @vladislavkovalev 66 8 74
7 GM Nordibek Abdusattorov @ChessWarrior7197 58.5 14 72.5
8 GM Dmitry Andreikin @2Vladimirovich90 57 14 71
9 GM Grigoriy Oparin @OparinGrigoriy 50.5 20 70.5
10 GM Maxime Vachier-Lagrave @LyonBeast 41.5 28 69.5
11 GM Maksim Chigaev @Fandorine 56.5 12 68.5
12 GM Sergey Karjakin @SergeyKarjakin 57.5 10 67.5
13 GM Boris Grachev @Guenplen 47.5 12 59.5
14 GM Vladimir Fedoseev @Bigfish1995 41.5 16 57.5
15 IM Tuan Minh Le @wonderfultime 50 6 56
16 GM Alexander Grischuk @Grischuk 49.5 6 55.5
17 GM Aleksandar Indjic @Beca95 49.5 6 55.5
18 GM Oleksandr Bortnyk @Oleksandr_Bortnyk 41 12 53
19 GM Raunak Sadhwani @RaunakSadhwani2005 47.5 4 51.5
20 GM Yuriy Kuzubov @KuzubovYuriy 41 8 49

Games final eight

The Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix is presented by Gambit, where you can play classic games like Reversi, Backgammon, and Oh Ship with players from around the world.

More information about the Speed Chess Championship Grand Prix can be found here.

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