The Las Vegas Chess Festival Kicks Off!

Photo courtesy of Jason Luu Photo: Jason Luu

The Las Vegas Chess Festival kicked off with the U.S. Women’s Open. WGM Vera Nebolsina won the tournament with an undefeated score of 4.5 out of 5. Here is her victory over second place finisher WGM Carla Heredia.

[pgn][Result "1-0"] [Black "WGM Carla Heredia"] [White "WGM Vena Nebolsina"]1. Nf3 d5 2. g3 Nf6 3. Bg2 c6 4. d4 Bf5 5. c4 e6 6. Nc3 h6 7. Qb3 Qb6 8. c5 Qxb3 9. axb3 Nbd7 10. b4 a6 11. b5 cxb5 12. Nxb5 Rc8 13. Nc3 Be7 14. Nd2 Nb8 15. f3 Nc6 16. e4 Nxd4 17. Ra4 Nc2+ 18. Ke2 Bg6 19. Nb3 d4 20. Nd1 Bxc5 21. Rc4 d3+ 22. Kxd3 Nb4+ 23. Kc3 b6 24. Rxb4 Bxb4+ 25. Kxb4 O-O 26. Nc3 Nd7 27. f4 Rfd8 28. Be3 f6 29. Rd1 Bf7 30. Bh3 Kf8 31. Ra1 a5+ 32. Ka3 Ke7 33. Nd4 Nc5 34. Bf1 Be8 35. Nb3 Nxb3 36. Kxb3 Rb8 37. Nb5 {And Nebolsina converted her endgame advantage in another 16 moves.}*[/pgn]

The next exciting event was the No Limit Holdem poker tournament hosted by Jennifer Shahade. The winner was Greg Shahade. NationalOpen-poker Last year’s National Open Champion, Alexey Dreev, played a 24 board simultaneous exhibition and mercilessly won every game.

Aleksey Dreev, Photo Tim Hanks Aleksey Dreev, Photo Tim Hanks

The Walter Browne Memorial Blitz Memorial was won by GM Axel Bachmann. He scored an impressive 12 out of 14 points. Here is his victory against GM Timur Gareev.

[pgn] [Black "GM Axel Bachmann"] [White "GM Timur Gareev"]1. d4 Nf6 2. Bg5 d5 3. e3 Bf5 4. Bxf6 gxf6 5. c4 dxc4 6. Bxc4 Bg7 7. Nc3 Nd7 8. Nf3 Nb6 9. Nh4 Bg6 10. Bb3 e6 11. Qf3 c6 12. O-O f5 13. g3 Qg5 14. Ng2 Bh5 15. Qf4 Bh6 16. Qc7 Qe7 17. Qe5 Rg8 18. Nf4 Bf3 19. Rfe1 Rc8 20. Nxe6 fxe6 21. Bxe6 Rf8 22. Bxc8 Qxe5 23. dxe5 Nxc8 24. Ne2 Bg7 25. Nd4 Bd5 26. f4 Nb6 27. Nxf5 Rxf5 28. e4 Rf7 29. exd5 Nxd5 30. Rad1 a5 31. Kg2 Bf8 32. Kf3 a4 33. Ke4 Rd7 34. a3 Bxa3 35. e6 Rd8 36. bxa3 Nc3+ 37. Ke5 Rxd1 38. Rxd1 Nxd1 39. f5 Nc3 40. f6 b5 41. Kd6 Ne4+ 42. Ke5 Nxf6 43. Kxf6 b4 {and White resigned}*[/pgn]

The centerpiece of the Las Vegas Chess Festival, the National Open, is currently underway. After day one, the tournament leaders are GM Ehsan Ghaemmaghami, GM Yaroslav Zherebukh, GM Daniel Fridman, IM Ruifeng Li, and GM Joshua Friedel, all tied with 2 points.

There was also a chess camp, featuring some of the GMs and WGMs in the tournament.

IMG_1214 US Chess Digital Editor Jen Shahade teaching some young talents. Photo Daniel Meyrom

Upcoming festival events Youth Puzzle Contest – Saturday at 6 p.m. in the Paradise South Ballroom Youth Simul – Saturday at 6:30 p.m. in the Paradise South Ballroom Post-Game Analysis by GM Var Akobian – begins 2 hours after every round in Conference Room 5 Blitz Sectionals – Saturday and Sunday at 10 p.m. in Ballroom D Lecture by GM Ron Henley, “Chess Strategy: The Bishop Pair in the Endgame” – Sunday at 1 p.m. in Conference Room 1 U.S. Game/10 Championship – Monday at 10 a.m. in Ballroom F-G   For more information on the Las Vegas Chess Festival, visit the Official Website.

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