ST. LOUIS, Aug. 15, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- After nine intense days of competition against the most elite chess players in the world, the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL) crowned Maxime Vachier-Lagrave as the champion of the Sinquefield Cup and the winner of the third leg of the Grand Chess Tour (GCT).
"It feels amazing to get this win since this leg of the Grand Chess Tour is one of the strongest events in the history of chess," said the new Sinquefield Cup champion Maxime Vachier-Lagraveas. "It's also special to be the first French grandmaster to win a major tournament in more than a century."
Vachier-Lagrave successfully bested nine of the top-ranked chess players in the world to take home the title, $75,000 grand prize, and 13 Grand Chess Tour points. He is now only three tour points behind World Champion and No. 1 ranked player, Magnus Carlsen in the overall standings. He has also risen to the No. 2 rated player in the world based on the live rating system.
The Sinquefield Cup awards a total prize fund of $300,000 and represents the third of five stops on the 2017 GCT – a circuit of international chess events featuring the world's elite chess talent, created in partnership between the CCSCSL and Chess Promotions, Ltd. (London Chess Classic). The tournament is named after Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield, founders of the CCSCSL.
"It was exciting to see another historic moment in world chess happen in Saint Louis with Vachier-Lagrave taking a major win home to France for the first time since the mid-1800s. It also marks another year without a repeat winner of the Sinquefield Cup," said Tony Rich, Executive Director of the CCSCSL. "Now, we're preparing to watch another historic moment happen as legendary World Champion Kasparov comes out of retirement to compete in the inaugural Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz event."
Legendary World Champion and 13th World Champion in chess history, Garry Kasparov, will compete in the Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz competition from Aug. 14-19, 2017, which features six of the Grand Chess Tour players and four wildcard picks playing for a total prize fund of $150,000. Participants include: Viswanathan Anand, Levon Aronian, Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Ian Nepomniachtchi, Sergey Karjakin, Garry Kasparov, Le Quang Liem, Lenier Dominguez, and David Navara. The Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz competition is the fourth stop on the Grand Chess Tour.
Finally, at the conclusion of the Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz, the CCSCSL will host the Ultimate Moves blitz games on Aug. 19, 2017. Ultimate Moves is an event featuring a lively series of rapid and blitz games among GCT players and special guests including Rex and Randy Sinquefield and John Urschel.
The 2017 Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz rounds, as well as the Ultimate Moves games will be streamed live daily on www.grandchesstour.org, featuring play-by-play and analysis from the world-renowned commentary team of GM Yasser Seirawan, WGM Jennifer Shahade, and GM Maurice Ashley, as well as Spanish commentary by GM Alejandro Ramirez and WIM Ivette Garcia. Live spectators may view the action in the tournament hall and enjoy additional GM-led commentary on-site by GM Varuzahan Akobian and GM Robert Hess.
About The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization that is committed to making chess an important part of our community. In addition to providing a forum for the community to play tournaments and casual games, the club also offers chess improvement classes, beginner lessons and special lectures.
Recognizing the cognitive and behavioral benefits of chess, the Chess Club and Scholastic Center is committed to supporting those chess programs that already exist in area schools while encouraging the development of new in-school and after-school programs. For more information, visit www.saintlouischessclub.org.
About The Grand Chess Tour
The Grand Chess Tour is a circuit of international events, each demonstrating the highest level of organization for the world's best players. The 2017 Tour was created in partnership between the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (Sinquefield Cup) and Chess Promotions, Ltd. (London Chess Classic). The legendary Garry Kasparov, one of the world's greatest ambassadors for chess, inspired the Grand Chess Tour and helped solidify the partnership between the organizers. His tireless efforts to popularize the game around the world mirror the goals and ambitions of the Grand Chess Tour.
The 2017 Grand Chess Tour stops consist of the Paris Grand Chess Tour in Paris, France June 21-25; Your Next Move Grand Chess Tour in Leuven, Belgium June 28-July 2; the Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis, USA Aug. 12-12; Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz Aug. 14-19 and the London Classic in London, UK Dec. 1-10, 2017.
SOURCE Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis