The 2nd stage of the Grand-Prix 2012 of the French Chess Federation took place on 28-29th April at the building of “Grand Nancy” in Nancy.
The qualifying event, International Rapid Open, was played on Saturday, 28th April, as a 9-round Swiss with the time control of 15 minutes (+3 seconds per move) per player.
194 players from 14 countries took part in the event, among them being 19 Grandmasters, including the eight top French players, German number one Arkadij Naiditsch and the legendary Ulf Andersson.
Seven players qualified for the knockout Final. Beside the winners Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Tigran Gharamian (7,5/9 each), Vlad Tkachiev, Laurent Fressinet, Andrei Istratescu, Etienne Bacrot and Sebastien Feller qualified with 7.0/9 after edging large number of players on tie-break.
Local player Christian Bauer (French number 4) entered the Final with a special invitation from the organizers.
The Final Matches “Cup System” were played on Sunday, 29th April. Each match consisted of two rapid games 15min+3 sec per player, and in case of a tie additional two blitz games 3min+2sec would be played.
Results of the Quarter-Finals:
Christian Bauer – Laurent Fressinet 0-2
Tigran Gharamian – Andrei Istratescu 0.5-1.5
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave – Vlad Tkachiev 1.5-0.5
Etienne Bacrot – Sebastien Feller 1.5-0.5
Laurent Fressinet – Andrei Istratescu 1-1 (Fressinet won the blitz tie-break 1.5-0.5 and qualified for the final)
Etienne Bacrot – Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 0-2
Laurent Fressinet – Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 1-0, 0-1, Vachier-Lagrave won the blitz match 2-0 and took the first prize
Prizes for the Final Matches:
4 Quarter-finalists – 700 € each
2 Semi-finalists – 1 250 € each
1 Loser in Final – 2 500 €
1 Winner – 4 000 €
The 5 steps of Grand Prix FFE:
Paris – Le Port-Marly 7-8 janvier 2012 (also won by Maxime Vachier-Lagrave)
Nancy 28-29 avril 2012
Aix-les-Bains 21-22 juillet 2012
Tours – Villandry 6-7 octobre 2012
Finale à Ajaccio et Bastia 29 au 31 octobre 2012