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|GM Wesley So|
|March 8, 2015|
Wesley So, born in the Philippines, is an elite Grandmaster, and now plays for the United States. In 2012, Wesley began full-time studies at Webster University, where he led the elite college chess team coached by GM Susan Polgar. “It was an excellent experience and I am grateful (for) the opportunity to study there.”
In November 2014, So officially changed his federation to the USA, making our team one of the strongest in the World. In March 2015, So was ranked #8 in the World, while Hikaru Nakamura was ranked #3 in the World.
So enjoys the travel associated with chess, though it is the people in the chess world he really loves: “Here’s the thing about chess destinations: they are all interesting and the people you meet make every place your favorite place. I love to learn about different cultures. I usually try to get an extra day after the tournament has ended, so I can do some sight-seeing and meet the locals.”
Wesley So was the first winner of the innovative Millionaire Chess Open, defeating his friend and Webster team-mate Ray Robson in the finals. Wesley was photographed on the January 2015 Chess Life cover with his $100,000 prize check.
Just a month after switching his federation to the US, Wesley had a breakthrough performance at the 2015 Tata Steel tournament in Wijk aan Zee, tying for second with 8.5/13 behind World Champion Magnus Carlsen.
He pinpointed two of these games as his favorites:
Wesley currently resides in Minnetonka, Minnesota and is now a full-time chess professional. “Challenging the best chess players in the world means total commitment.” he said.