Creativity and good management against the financial crisis. That is the motto for the Ciudad de Leon organizers. Its 26th edition will be a clash of generations, a very attractive match: Vassily Ivanchuk (44 years old) and Anish Giri (18).
The format is a new one: “Total Chess”, with two classical games (although somewhat accelerated) on Friday (June 7th), four rapid on Saturday and ten blitz on Sunday. As usual, the parallel activities will also be interesting.
Chess is really important in Leon. After 25 consecutive years of success, the risk of cancellation was there, because of the terrible financial crisis in Spain.
However, almost all the sponsors (public institutions and private companies) and even a new one (Sabadell-Herrero Bank) have expressed their unconditional support to the tournament, and to the social applications of chess as well.
Ivanchuk, the absent-minded wise veteran, and Giri, the young killer, will play in the magnificent Auditorium with the following time-controls: 45 minutes + 15 seconds increment on Friday (two games), 20 minutes + 10 seconds on Saturday (four games), and 5 minutes + 3 seconds on Sunday (ten games).
If the score is tied after the 16 games, a tie-break of two more blitz games will be played, followed by a sudden-death if necessary.
The main arbiter will be Joaquin Espejo. International Masters Sergio Estremera and Joan Mellado will provide live commentary on all the games.
According to Marcelino Sion, the Tournament Director, “Ivanchuk is the favourite for the slow games, but Giri probably has an edge in blitz. However, as Ivanchuk is a genius, you never know”.
The parallel activities connected to the tournament are always important in Leon. Besides chess films, the young talents tournament, a lecture for them by Ivanchuk and a simul by Giri, the main novelty this year is a debate on the social applications of chess (on Wednesday) which will also be a presentation of the book Ajedrez y Ciencia, pasiones mezcladas (Chess and Science, mixed passions), written by Leontxo Garcia.
Web page: www.advancedchessleon.com
Leontxo Garcia, Press Oficer