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100th British – Preliminaries Pt. 2

The simultaneous match on the Sunday before the big event get off the ground, is one of the traditional extra events. This year it was given by Grandmaster Nick Pert. As often as is possible, it is held out of doors, in or near somewhere the public can see the action, and join in if they so wish. At Torquay, however, the venue is just so near and yet so far from the sea front, that the logistics of getting all the equipment, tables, chairs sets, etc. makes the outdoor option prohibitive. Also, the weather on Sunday afternoon was extremely unpredictable, and a torrential downpour at tea-time proved the wisdom of discretion.

So 20 boards were set up in the venue, yet strangely, in spite of the record entry and many players milling around the building, only 14 actually sat down to play, mostly youngsters. Pert’s progress around the boards was slow and steady, giving the oppostion plenty of time to think about their moves. Not that that did them any good, as Pert won all 14 games. However, book prizes were awarded to 4 players, including the 2 youngest and the last to finish.

The first move is made.

Early days

Who's happy to be here?

Prizewinning sisters - pleased, or what?

The 4 awardees with GM Nick Pert.

 While the special extras were going on, there was a 6 round RapidPlay tournament going on in the main playing hall. The prizewinners were as follows:

1st Danny Gormally 6 pts. £140.00

2nd= Andrew Greet;  Mark Hebden; Simon McCullough; Mark Talbot;  all 5 pts. £17.50

Grading prize: Ollie Willson 4 pts. £40.00 

Rd. 6 - Bd. 1 Greet vs Gormally.

Andrew Greet gets his cheque from Lara Barnes.

…… and finally, the last event of the day was probably the craziest – a 9-man simultaneous match. Put as simply as possible (which is far from easy) all 9 players play their 8 opponents simultaneously. Simple maths shows that this involves (9 X 8 ) / 2 = 36 games  on 18 tables, all of which took up a considerable area of the hall. This formula has been devised by David Gilbert, who has organised several such events at his club, but only with 7 players hitherto, never 9. Before the start, he ran through the rules with the assembled players and then it was all go, with everyone running hither and thither, trying to keep up with their 8 games and clocks. It perhaps shouldn’t have been a surprise that the quicksilver “Jumping” Jack Rudd was the winner at the end of the night. He’s been running round chess halls all his life, calculating at the speed of light, and this was truly his metier. If there was a world championship at this form of the game, he would surely be a candidate.

The wall chart, colour-coded.

Dave Gilbert explains the do's and don'ts to the assembled players.

Off they go!

Jack Rudd looks well up for it; on the way to a win.

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