Posts Tagged ‘chess Ben Rood’

On the Eve of Greatness: Part Two

November 7, 2012

Tomorrow two of my favorite young chess players will begin play at the World Youth Chess Championship in Maribor, Slovenia. As the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy, I have had the distinct pleasure of coaching many of the top ranking scholastic chess players from California and can comfortably state that the two players described below are among the best chess players I have ever coached.

Milind Maiti appeared in my class at the Collins Elementary School Chess Team in September of 2010. Sadly for Collins chess team, Milind moved houses and now plays chess at another Cupertino school. Milind’s strength lies in his incredible tactical abilities as well as his calm nature. At the board, he is a hard player to rattle and an even harder player to defeat.

Ben Rood is a chess player who seems destined to become a World Champion. His love for the game and over all talent for chess is second to none. The highlights of his championship play include never losing a game at a State Championship, winning two national championships and placing higher than any other seven-year old at last year’s World Youth Chess Championship. Ben Rood is a player who plays his best chess on the biggest stages and none are bigger for an eight year old than the 2012 World Youth Chess Championship in Maribor, Slovenia.

 

On the Eve of Greatness: Part One

Its Deja Vu Mr. Petroff

October 21, 2012

In French the phrase Deja Vu means “already seen.” Not only have I already posted an article on my clever new system against the Nimzowitsch Attack in the Petroff Defense, I did so in my last post. However, the real reason for a sense of Deja Vu is that I  played this game following a chess lesson for Ben Rood just has I had two days prior. What are the odds that after two successive lessons for Ben Rood I would come home and play nearly identical games in the Petroff?

Because the games are so similar, I have not added any new analysis other than the final note.

[Event “Blitz 3 and 0”]

[Site “FICS”]

[Date “2012.10.20”]

[White “veralazcano”]

[Black “chessmusings”]

[Result “0-1”]

[ECO “C42”]

[Opening “Russian Game”]

[Time “17:14”]

[Variation “Nimzowitsch Attack”]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nf6 3. Nxe5 d6 4. Nf3 Nxe4 5. Nc3 Nxc3 6. dxc3 Be7 7. Be3 Nd7 8. Bd3 Nf6 9. Qd2 Be6 10. O-O-O Bxa2 11. b3 a5 12. Kb2 a4 13. Kxa2 axb3+ 14. Kxb3 O-O 15. Ra1 c5 16. Rxa8 Qb6+ {White resigns as black has a mate in 2. Do you see it?} 0-1

2012 U.S.C.F. National Elementary (K-6) Chess Championship

May 11, 2012

Beginning May 11, Nashville Tennessee will host the 2012 U.S.C.F National Elementary Chess Championship. This is the paramount annual chess event for children ages 4-12. Below is a highly biased preview for this year’s event. The competitors listed in this article are all kids I have the pleasure of playing chess with on a weekly basis. What can I say . . . my job rocks!

Kids to Watch in the K-1

Collins Elementary first grader Milind Maiti possesses natural tactical abilities that are beyond anything one would expect from a player in high school! He is truly a chess prodigy of the highest level and will be a contender at the 2012 National Elementary Chess Championship.

MSJE kindergartener Kevin Pan is a rookie at this year’s Nation Elementary Chess Championship. Fresh from a State Championship win in California, Kevin is poised to make a big statement in Nashville.

MSJE student Rishith Susarla was nearly perfect at the USCF National k-12 Championship in 2011. If you talk with Rishith one of the first things you will notice is how quickly he speaks. When sitting across the chessboard from him, I often feel that he calculates much faster than the computer Deep Blue.

I first got to know Edwin Thomas (MSJE) at last year’s chess camp I ran at Mission San Jose Elementary School. Edwin progressed from a rookie to a trophy winner in just a few short weeks.

Amulya Harish (MSJE) and his father always seek me out at the local tournaments for extra instruction. I have no doubt that with his dedication he will quickly excel.

Rounding out the field for the fabulous MSJE K-1 chess team is Annapoorni Meiyappan, Aarti Abhijit Sant, and Stephen He.

Kids to Watch in the K-3

Luke Zhao is a third grader at MSJE and the only child from that school to be an official member of the Torres Chess and Music Academy All Star Team for the school year 2011-2012. Luke has played an important role in several successful championship runs for the MSJE team. Now he seems ready to play for his first individual championship.

Watch out for John Chan (MSJE) who recently claimed the title of K-3 champion at last month’s CalChess Scholastic Chess Championships.

Second grader Soorya Kuppam (MSJE) is my favorite opponent on Monday nights. It’s hard to believe that he has already been competing in chess for three years.

Don’t let Mihir Bhuptani’s (MSJE) quiet personality fool you. His crushing tactics are comparable to a rock concert.

Tommy Koh has played in integral roll in several MSJE championship victories.

The final touch to the MSJE powerhouse this year is Jeffrey Liu.

Ben Rood was also a part of the Torres Chess and Music Academy All Star Team for the school year 2011-2012. Ben has already won several National and State Championships and is playing the best chess I have ever seen from a second grader. Fresh off his k-5 State Champion win in California, this second grader is ready to win at the national level again. If Magnus Carlsen is the Motzart of Chess then Ben Rood is definitely the Beethoven.

Kids to Watch in the K-5

Sadly, MSJE was unable to bring a full team to the K-5 section this year. Despite being a player down, I am sure that the kids who were able to attend will give a phenomenal effort.

The first member of the K-5 MSJE Team is Amit Sant, of whom I am a huge fan. Drake Lin has grown from a nominal player out of dozens to a key player at MSJE over the last several years. Finally, we have Anjan Das who is attending despite his extremely busy schedule of other extracurricular achievements.

Kids to Watch in the K-6

We can only say that while we only have four competitors for our MSJE K-6 Team, these are the four kids I am most glad to see attending.

Eric Zhu is the first kids at MSJE to ever defeat me in a chess game. Alvin Kong is so eager to play chess he often arrives to chess class before any of the coaches and always gives Coach Joe Lonsdale the most trouble in their weekly skirmishes.  Sayan Das, Anjan’s elder brother, is similar to his brother in his prolific talents in all areas, especially on the MSJE Team. Finally, Shalin Shah is not only one of my favorite opponents, but one of my good friends. I look ahead with regret at the loss to MSJE as he and the other K-6 competitor’s graduate onto the seventh grade and greater challenges. I would like to add that we will be losing one other key asset to the MSJE Team as our sixth graders move ahead. Nimish Shah, Salin’s father, was a fantastic and devoted volunteer every Monday at MSJE. I have great respect for his dedication to his son and the MSJE chess Team.

It is a distinct pleasure to have played a role in all of these wonderful children’s chess development. Unfortunately, I will not be at this year’s tournament as I must stay home to help my pregnant wife. Yet I know that Coach Joe Lonsdale will successfully lead our Northern California Chess Competitors to victory. Check back daily for more updates on the exciting events from the 2012 National Elementary Championship.

Eight Year Old Wins Grade 4-5 Chess Championship in California

April 23, 2012

Chess history was made on April 22, 2012. Ben Rood, while still only eight years old, won first place in the grade 4-5 section at the Calchess Scholastic State Chess Championship.
   California has been home to many youthful chess prodigies since I started attending the Calchess Scholastic State Chess Championship. A few that come to mind are Hikaru Nakamura, Samuel Shankland, Jordy Mont-Reynaud, Vinay Bhat, Daniel Naroditsky, Nicholas Nip and Samuel Sevian. Ben Rood’s performance at the 2012 Calchess State Scholastic Chess Championship is the best I have ever witnessed by a California chess prodigy under the age of ten.
   Ben’s victory this weekend was simply immense. Not only did he place first in the strongest 4-5 section in California history; he went through the tournament undefeated. Along the way, Ben Rood defeated talented up and coming players as well as one F.I.D.E. Master.
   As fantastic as his performance was, it was not unexpected. During the past two years, Ben has won many state and national titles. In fact, he is the first player in Calchess history to win the Kindergarten Championship, Grade 1-3 Championship and Grade 4-5 Championship in three consecutive years.
   Ben Rood’s success is truly a combination of talent and hard work. In fact, by the age of eight he has learned more about chess than many old veterans of the game. He began chess study with his mother at age three. When he entered school, Ben started attending chess classes run by the Berkeley Chess School. For one so young, Ben’s desire to improve was insatiable. His parents began signing him up for tournaments very regularly and taking him to the Friday Night Chess program run by the Berkeley Chess School. In spite of winning first place in the Kindergarten section at the 2010 Calchess Scholastic State Championships, Ben had reached the point of needing personal attention to draw out his natural talent. During the summer of 2010 Ben met his current chess coach Chris Torres, president of the Torres Chess & Music Academy, at a chess tournament. Currently, Ben enjoys spending upwards of ten hours a week focusing on chess.

World Youth Chess Championship 2011: Round 1

November 19, 2011

Play got underway today at the 2011 World Youth Chess Championship in the resort town of Caldas Novas, Brazil. Over a thousand of the world’s best young chess players took to the playing hall before 4:00 p.m. to make the first move toward winning a World Championship. For many of these young prodigies, this is the first time they have ever represented their country on foreign soil.
   Ben Rood, a seven-year-old from the United States, made a strong impression in his international debut. Ben played a wonderfully aggressive game with the white pieces against Avila Milder of Bolivia. On move six, Ben Rood left the book recommendations and forged a path he felt would lead to an advantage. This gutsy strategy paid off a short while later when Avila Milder made his first mistake on move eight and a second error on move nine. Avila’s most significant sin was offering to trade queens when Ben’s endgame prospects were very good. After the queens left the board, Ben kept pressing his advantage until his opponent succumbed. Throughout the game, Ben played with a cool confidence that is rare find even when observing chess players three times his age.

World Youth Chess Championship 2011

November 17, 2011

This November the world’s most talented players who are eighteen years and younger will converge upon Caldas Novas, Brazil in order to compete in the 2011 World Youth Chess Championship. These extraordinary chess talents will do battle for nine rounds in hopes of placing in the top three for their age group. Those fortunate enough to accomplish this task will be rewarded with bronze, silver and gold medals in an olympic style ceremony. Round one of the 2011 World Youth Chess Championship will begin on Friday the eighteenth of November. The official website for this event is http://www.wycc2011.com/. Those interested in the 2011 World Youth Chess Championship should also keep visiting this blog for regular updates on California’s participants as well as the insider details from my student Ben Rood.

Ben is the Best at Chess

November 1, 2011

image

On 10/30/2011 Ben Rood again proved that he is the best chess player under the age of eight by producing a perfect score at the 2011 U.S.  National Junior Chess Congress in Santa Clara, California. Ben was the overwhelming favorite in the 2011 U.S. Junior Chess Congress and he did not disappoint his fans. In five rounds Ben Rood racked up five wins and thus became a National Chess Champion for the second time in 2011. Next up for Ben Rood is the World Youth Chess Championships in Brazil which takes place in mid-November.

More articles on Ben Rood:

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/tag/ben-rood-chess-tournament/

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/2011/04/09/2011-calchess-scholastic-state-championships-ben-rood/

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/2011/08/10/ben-roods-chess-accomplishments-are-the-talk-of-the-town-in-walnut-creek/

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/tag/ben-rood-chess-champion/

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/2011/05/09/king-of-the-rood/

https://chessmusings.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/on-the-eve-of-greatness-three-california-chess-prodigies-competing-in-their-first-national-chess-championship-2/

Send Ben Rood to Brazil

August 11, 2011

This November local super star Ben Rood will be representing the United States in the World Youth Chess Championship to be held in Caldas Novas, Brazil. Seven year old Ben would like to have his family there to support him as he battles the best eight year olds in the world for the title. All proceeds from this tournament will go directly to help send the Roods to Brazil. Remember to bring cash as there will be a raffle for exciting chess prizes after the tournament.

 

Torres Chess and Music Academy, Inc. Presents:

SEND BEN ROOD TO BRAZIL!

At the Contra Costa Jewish Day School – 3836 Mount Diablo Blvd, Lafayette,  94549

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Where: The Contra Costa Jewish Day School in Lafayette

When: 2:30pm – 5:30pm

What: Scholastic (K-12) 3 Round Quad – G/30

Cost: $25 to help send Ben to Brazil. Raffle tickets are $5 each for the first 4 or 5 for $20

Trophies are awarded to top player(s) in each quad. All other players will receive medals.

USCF Rated Quad Format: All players must be USCF members, and understand USCF tournament rules.

To register for USCF pay an additional $16 for age 12 & under; $19 for age 15 and under; $25 for 16 to 24.

3 round Quad Format – Everyone plays 3 games against players in their quad. Quads are formed by making groups of four by rating. All sections will be Game in 30 min (each player). Sets and boards provided. Clocks will be provided, but players are encouraged to bring their own.

Round Times: Check In begins at 1:45 PM. There will be no late registration.

R 1 @ 2:30pm * R 2 @ 3:30pm * R 3 @ 4:30 pm *

Trophies and medals awarded at the conclusion of each quad

Entry Fees: $25  Make check payable to: TCAMA or APPLY ONLINE at http://www.chessandmusic.com/aboutus/

Information: Contact Chris Torres at Chesslessons@aol.com.

Website: www.ChessAndMusic.com or

REGISTER EARLY AS SPACE MAY BE LIMITED. THERE WILL BE NO LATE REGISTRATION. ALL ENTRIES MUST BE SUBMITTED BY MIDNIGHT AUGUST 27TH, 2011.

(DETACH AND RETURN APPLICATION BELOW WITH PAYMENT)

– – – – – – – – – – – – – — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Torres Chess and Music Academy, Inc. Presents:

SEND BEN ROOD TO BRAZIL

1  $25.00 to attend the Quads

1  $5.00 each for  1-4 raffle tickets 1 $20.00 for 5 raffle tickets (save $5!)

1  Annual fee for USCF membership: $16 for < 12 ; $19 for 13 to 15; $25 for 16 +

Total $ _________ Check payable to TCAMA.

MAIL TO: TCAMA, 16691 Colonial Trail, Lathrop, CA 95330

OR APPLY ONLINE AT CHESSANDMUSIC.COM

Name: _____________________________________________________________ Birth Date: ____/____/____

Address: _____________________________________________ City: _________________ CA Zip: _________

Phone: (_____) ___________________ E-Mail: ________________________________________

School: __________________________________________________ Grade: ____

USCF ID #: ____________________________ USCF Rating: ________________ Exp Date: __/__/__

(GO TO http://main.uschess.org/component/option,com_wrapper/Itemid,181/ TO LOOK UP YOUR USCF ID)

 

My child, (named above) is permitted to participate in this event. I fully understand that it is my responsibility to supervise my child during this event. Should it be necessary for my child to have emergency medical treatment while participating in this event, I hereby give permission to render medical treatment deemed necessary. I, release, discharge, indemnify, and hold harmless the TCAMA, the Contra Costa Jewish Day School, and their volunteers and/or staff, from any claims relating to any injury that may result to my child while participating in this event. I give my permission for people to take and use photographs, or any other recorded material, taken during this chess tournament. I consent to the publication of this child’s individual tournament results/scores.

Parent/Guardian Signature: _______________________________________ Date: __/__/__ Relationship ________________

Ben Rood’s Chess Accomplishments are the Talk of the Town in Walnut Creek

August 10, 2011

The Walnut Creek Patch just ran a wonderful article detailing Ben Rood’s rise to chess fame. The Walnut Creek Patch is Ben Rood’s hometown newspaper so I know this will help raise  community awareness of

his incredible chess accomplishments.

Below is an exerpt from the article by Jonathan Hawthorne of the Walnut Creek Patch:

The sport of chess is in a league of its own with regard to strategy. But one Walnut Creek resident, 7-year-old and soon-to-be second-grader Ben Rood, has essentially mastered the seemingly difficult game of chess. In the spring, Ben won the National Elementary Chess Championship for his age group, Kindergarten-1st Grade, at a tournament in Dallas. To win the title, Ben had to face the nation’s elite chess players.

http://walnutcreek.patch.com/articles/whiz-kid-the-chess-player

Ben Rood Becomes National Chess Champion

May 14, 2011
Torres Chess & Music Academy, Inc. 16691 Colonial Trail

Lathrop, CA  95330

Phone (661) 699-8348

Chesslessons@aol.com

Press Release

Contact: Chris Torres

Phone: (661) 699-8348

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 13, 2011

FIRST GRADER BEN ROOD BECOMES NATIONAL CHESS CHAMPION

WALNUT CREEK, CA, May 6-8, 2011: Walnut Creek seven year old Ben Rood was awarded the title of K-1 National Chess Champion at the 2011 United States Chess Federation National Elementary Chess Championships held in Dallas, Texas on May 6-8. Ben’s presence attracted interest in the section for kindergarten to first graders because he had the highest chess rating of all 294 contestants. Despite the tough competition, Ben won all seven of his games against the very best chess players his age in the country. The most challenging game for Ben came in round 5 when he was paired against last year’s K-1 champion, Praveer Sharan. It took Ben Rood 3 hours and 81 moves to finally defeat Praveer. He then had to continue his perfect record for two more rounds in order to be crowned a National Chess Champion.

   Ben Rood’s path to becoming a National Chess Champion began at the age of three when he decided that 300 piece jigsaw puzzles were too easy and his mother decided to introduce him to the game of chess. When he entered school, Ben started attending chess classes run by the Berkeley Chess School. For one so young,  Ben’s desire to improve was immense. His parents began signing him up for tournaments very regularly and taking him to the Friday Night Chess program run by the Berkeley Chess School. In spite of winning first place in the Kindergarten section at the 2010 Calchess Scholastic State Championships, Ben had reached the point of needing personal attention to draw out his natural talent. During the summer of 2010 Ben met chess coach Chris Torres, president of the Torres Chess & Music Academy, at a chess tournament. The two started training together a short while later. Chris has taught several other national chess champions. He immediately recognized Ben Rood’s remarkable talent. Chris then devised a plan to get Ben calculating more accurately while playing more aggressive openings that would better suit his personality and amazing tactical vision.

In December of 2010, Ben Rood traveled to Stockton for the Calchess Grade-level Chess Championships and used his newly found chess style very effectively. Ben won all his games easily and became the Grade One State Chess Champion. Over the next several months, Ben’s chess improved at a rate never before seen from a six year old chess player. By February of 2011, Ben was beating very strong chess players of all ages while taking care to record his games accurately for later review with his coach. In the first week of April, Ben Rood competed in the Calchess Scholastic State Championships K-3 division, held in Santa Clara. During this tournament, Ben once again achieved a perfect score and even defeated the reining second grade National Chess Champion, Josiah Stearman. For his remarkable performance, Ben Rood became a State Chess Champion for a third time.

   According to his coach Chris Torres, Ben Rood is the only first grader in California history to win the State Grade Level Chess Championship, the State K-3 Chess Championship and the National Chess Championship in the same school year. Chris attributes Ben’s successes to his remarkable talent, love for the game, incredible work ethic and to the support that his parents Robin Hultgren and Lisa Rood provide.           

Chris Torres had other Torres Chess & Music Academy students to make him proud in the K-1 section. Chris’ other students included Milind Maiti, from Cupertino, who placed third in the individual competition. Five members of the Mission San Jose Elementary School team, Rishith Susarla, Chenyi Zhao, Soorya Kuppam, Jeffrey Liu, and Amulya Harish also placed third in the school competition.

-End-


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