The strongest rapid tournament of the year in France will take place this weekend, 9-10th March, at Conseil Général de Meurthe et Moselle in Nancy.
232 players from 20 different countries are registered, among them being 23 Grandmasters and 33 Masters.
The tournament is the first stage of the French Rapid Grand-Prix 2013. Last year overall winner of the Grand-Prix was GM Etienne Bacrot who defeated GM Laurent Fressinet in the final match on Corsica.
Four Super-GMs rated over 2700 elo will participate: German number 1 Arkadij Naiditsch (2716) and the three top French players Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (2715, last year winner), Laurent Fressinet (2706) and Etienne Bacrot (2704).
The first part of the event will be held on Saturday as a 9-round Swiss with the time control 15 min + 3 sec per player. Top 16 finishers qualify for the finals which will be completed on Sunday.
The 16-finals will be played according to knockout system. Each match will consist of two rapid games 15′+3”, and then if necessary two blitz games 3′+2”.
The overall winner will earn 4000 EUR, while the second placed player will earn 2000 EUR. Total prize fund is 15,000 EUR.
IM Christophe Philippe