Christmas on the Road: Top U.S. Players Travel to Bay Area and St. Petersburg

US Chess wishes a merry Christmas to all our members and chess devotees, as well as luck and warmth to many of our top players on the road. Earlier this month, FIDE announced a new location for the World Rapid and Blitz Championships, St. Petersburg, Russia. Among the US contenders is the 2018 Grand Chess Tour champion, Hikaru Nakamura. Many of the top players in the World are also in the mix, including World Champion Magnus Carlsen. Other American players include former FIDE World Championship challenger Gata Kamsky, U.S. Open Champion Timur Gareyev, IM Leonid Sokolin and bullet legend and new Grandmaster Andrew Tang. Follow the entire American squad on World Champion Grandmaster Ju Wenjun headlines the Women's Rapid and Blitz World Championships, along with GM Anna Muzychuk,"> who gave a TED talk which detailed her decision not to play in last year's edition in Saudi Arabia.  Lennart Ootes posted some photos of the spectacular opening ceremony. Round one begins at 6:30 AM ET on December 26th and runs through December 30.  You can find more info and watch the games on the official site.  Meanwhile, college students are traveling in the opposite direction, as the Pan-American Championships (December 27-30) head to San Francisco, California. Top games will be broadcast live at Al Lawrence and Vanessa Sun will be covering the event for CLO and our social media accounts respectively. Acclaimed photographer David Llada also spent the holiday en route to San Francisco to cover the Pan-Ams, so watch his twitter feed for snaps and observations.

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