Letter to FIDE Concerning Events for Candidates Cycle Qualification

A PDF version of the below letter is available here.

December 20, 2023 

Arkady Dvorkovich 
1007 Lausanne, Switzerland 
Avenue de Rhodanie 54 

Dear President Dvorkovich, 

The United States Chess Federation is concerned about the conduct of the qualification tournaments related to the Candidates tournament. We believe that scheduling last-minute events to assist an individual player gain rating points to qualify for the Candidates tournament  is neither sporting nor transparent, and it taints the selection process for FIDE and all of international chess. 

As you know, we are supportive of the recent changes made to qualification for the cycle. We believe in the power of the biannual cycle to select the best players to compete. Just missing the qualification is no doubt frustrating for the players, but the cycle is intended to provide an open and fair competitive environment for all players. Organizing a last-minute event that is practically non-inclusive goes against the spirit of fair competition. 

We continue to believe that when the final selections are made, the players should be those who throughout the cycle are most deserving of the honor of playing in the Candidates tournament. There will also undoubtedly be many great players who will miss out. Because of this, we believe it is imperative that the selection criteria are clear and transparent and have widespread support within the FIDE family. 

We urge FIDE to not rate the French event and take steps to require that all FIDE events be registered at least 30 days in advance of their start date. This will reduce the amount of gamesmanship that thwarts the spirt of fair competition during the biannual qualification cycle. 


Randy Bauer
US Chess President