Guernsey Chess Club and Federation Reports

Kevin Thurlow reports from the Spectrum Chess 2006 Guernsey Tournament

1st Spectrum Chess Guernsey Congress - 17-19th March 2006

Spectrum have been running weekend tournaments for more than ten years, but this was the first one outside the UK mainland. Most weekend tournaments are run by locals, but Spectrum policy is to find nice hotels anywhere, negotiate with the locals, and then run the event. Consequently, you know you will get good playing conditions, and to see a lot of the same faces in different locations, as a group of players appear at every Spectrum tournament. The week long Guernsey Chess Festival in October has been running successfully for over 30 years, so Spectrum decided to run a weekend event six months apart from that. Of course, it is rather more expensive and time-consuming getting to Guernsey than travelling to events in the UK, so it is not surprising that there were only 30 players. Half of them were from Guernsey, seeking the opportunity to play different opponents without having to take any holiday, 12 travelled from England, comprising some Spectrum regulars and some Guernsey Festival regulars, two made the short hop from Jersey, and there was a lone Scot.

The venue was the Peninsula Hotel, the home of the October chess festival for many years, and after a brief visit elsewhere, the home for the 2006 festival. The venue was superb as always, and the staff always do a great job looking after the visitors. Comfortable rooms, good food, a two-minute walk to the beach - what more could you want? Well, good weather obviously - it was sunny for the entire weekend, but bitterly cold due to the abnormally strong winds sweeping across the island. Those of us with cars were very grateful.

There was a useful grading split of players, so although only one tournament was played, the prizes were awarded in the usual four sections of roughly the same number of players, Open, under165, under 125 and under 100 (ECF). Guernsey Chess Federation supplied their Elo-based rating list, which was converted into English gradings. Prizes were guaranteed at 70, 50 and 30 for each section. The tournament was played in a good spirit. All the sections were hard fought, and in the Open, only one player was out of contention at the start of the last round. There was certainly some lively chess. Games were played with the unusual time-limit of all the moves in 100 minutes.

Results (England except where otherwise specified).

Open - 1st = D Rosen and M Cutmore 5/6, 3rd = D Cutmore, J Hawes (Jersey), K Thurlow 4

U165 - 1st = F Hamperl (Guernsey), I Jamieson (Scotland) 4/6, 3rd J Glover 3

U125 - 1st = I Blencowe, T Harnden and S Nalichowski (both Guernsey) 3

U100 - 1st G Lowe (Guernsey) 2, 2nd A Bloom 2, 3rd H Herschmann 1.

Spectrum organisers, Tony Corfe, Karen Fowler and Norman Went have already scheduled the next Guernsey weekend event for 16-18 March 2007, and obviously would like more entries next time. See for news of other Spectrum events.

BWCI (Guernsey) supported a Junior Mind Sports Challenge, which was run alongside the chess. This featured chess, cribbage, boku, othello, rummikub etc, and was attended by a group of enthusiastic local children.

For those who want a longer trip to Guernsey, the next festival is 15-21 October 2006, see See

Fred Hamperl reports from the Spectrum Chess 2006 Guernsey Tournament

26 players came together at Guersney's Peninsula Hotel on Friday evening 17 March 2006 for a 6 round weekend tournament.

Guernsey's Candiadte Master Toby Brookfield concentrates hard during his game with the eventual joint tournament winner Martin Cutmore.

Guernsey's best junior player Christopher Galpin watches his senior compatriots at work.

Guernsey resident Polish player Bogdan Nalichowski watches the games.

First place was shared between Candidate Master Daniel Rosen and Martin Cutmore with 5 out of 6. Third place with 4 out of 6 was shared by Guernsey's Fred Hamperl, Jersey's Jon Hawes, Ian Jamieson, Kevin Thurlow and David Cutmore. The top grading prize was shared by Fred Hamperl and Ian Jamieson. The next grading prize was shared by the two Guernseymen Terry Harnden and Seb Nalichowski. Aslo taking home the most money as outright bottom grading prize winner was Greg Lowe of Guernsey.

It was a really enjoyable event, and Guernsey is looking forward to it next year.