01 September 2020

September 1970 & 1995 'On the Cover'

Last month's 'On the Cover' post, August 1970 & 1995, featuring the top American chess magazine from both 50 and 25 years ago, 'celebrated two tournaments that were open to the amateur player'. This month we see a mixture of elite and amateur events.

Left: 'Lubomir Kavalek. Winner at Caracas.'
Right: '1995 Macy's / Excalibur U.S. Chessathon'

Chess Life & Review (50 Years Ago)

Don't Walk -- Run by Lubosh Kavalek • What does it mean to be a "runner" in chess? There are many kinds of grandmaster in the world. Some think that good prizes can be won by winning a few games and, by playing to avoid risk, drawing the rest. This is the "middle class" of grandmaster. But what happens if they lose a few games? Then their idea doesn't work. One should try to win every game. It is a little risky because of the possibility of losing, but if you do well you can be first in many tournaments, like Bobby Fischer, Bent Larsen and Victor Korchnoi. When you try to win every game and gain many points, then you are a runner. My time for running was at Caracas -- I just arrived there and ran.

I was happy when the USCF offered me the opportunity to represent the United States at the international tournament in Caracas June 19 - July 12. I thought that I must replace my Czechoslovakian flag as the Czech Chess Federation has protested against me twice already (in San Juan 1969 and Wijk aan Zee 1970). Most chess players run from one tournament to the next. When you are in that situation and have no country to go home to, you feel all at sea. But when I came out of the sea to Caracas and saw the American flag on my chess table, I know I was firmly on the ground.

Wikipedia's page Lubomir Kavalek explains,

When Soviet tanks rolled into Prague in August 1968, Kavalek was playing in the Akiba Rubinstein Memorial in Poland, in which he finished second. Kavalek, who had always hated Communism, decided to defect to the West rather than return to Soviet-dominated Czechoslovakia.

Kavalek finished first in Caracas, a full point ahead of Oscar Panno and Leonid Stein. He identified Lubomir Kavalek vs Anatoly Karpov; Caracas 1970 (chessgames.com) as his best game from the event.

Chess Life (25 Years Ago)

Not only was June 10th at Grand Central Terminal a great day for the media, but the 4th annual CHESSathon, sponsored by title sponsors Macy's and Excalibur, also provided a field day for photographers. as witnessed by what we believe to be an award-winning photograph of five-year-old Noah Belcher.

A few years ago I posted about the initial event in The First USCF Chessathon (September 2014). The four page story on the 1995 Chessathon, filled with color photos like those on the CL cover, was perhaps overshadowed by a second story introduced as a 'NEWS FLASH':-

The PCA is thrilled to announce that the 1995 Intel World Chess Championship will be held at the Observation Deck of the World Trade Center! Garry Kasparov and Vishy Anand will slug it out each Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday at 3 PM starting September 11th and continuing until one player reaches 10 1/2 points. General admission $9.00 (plus $6.00 Observation Deck ticket), King Room VIP seating $75 per session. Tickets are limited, so order today!

This was followed by a second part of the 'On the Cover' introduction:-

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP • The story broke in Germany, and was quickly reported on the Internet. The PCA World Championship match between Garry Kasparov and Viswanathan Anand will be held at the World Trade Center Observation Deck in New York City, beginning September 11th.

From the other side of the world, FIDE Challenger Gata Kamsky received word from FIDE Secretary Casto Abundo that no bids had been received for the Karpov — Kamsky match, as of the deadline of July 1st. FIDE suggested that the federations of the two participants split the organization (and cost) of the match.

As the result of a joint FAX from Karpov and Kamsky, FIDE President Campomanes has extended the bidding deadline until 17:00 hours. (Switzerland Time), September 15, 1995, conditioned on the match being organized and finished in 1995.

The acronym PCA refers to the Professional Chess Association. For more about the organization, see my page World Chess Championship : FIDE/PCA Chronology.

No comments: