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U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Women's Open and Okie Chess Festival conclude Print E-mail
By Joan DuBois   
September 30, 2009
Official Press Release
September 30, 2009
Contact: Tom Braunlich
[email protected]

(Tulsa, Oklahoma)
September 5th-7th, 2009 at the Trade Winds Central in Tulsa, Oklahoma was a quite a chess extravaganza! This year four events drew over 120 players for the Okie Chess Festival, U.S. Senior Open, and U.S. Women's Open, including 3 GMs, 4 IMs, and numerous strong players. Here are the detailed results:

- A U.S. Chess Federation National Championship

GM Larry Christiansen topped the 54-player field with 5.5/6 and thereby won $1200, the U.S. Senior title, and a slot in next year's U.S. Championship.
GM Larry Kaufman was sole 2nd with 5/6, for $700. As the top player over 60 he also wins the USCF slot in the World Senior Championship coming up soon in Italy.

Age Category Awards for the Senior:

50-54 - Yefim Treger (53)
55-59 - Joe Bradford (58)
60-64 - Michael Schemm (62)
65-69 - Denis Strenzwilk (68)
70-74 - Dr. Jorge Montero (72)
75+  -   Walter Shipman, (80)

A log-jam for 3rd with 4.5 pts included IM Joe Bradford, NM Yefim Treger, IM Walter Shipman, and Washington’s Mike Schemm, who won top player under 2100. They won $275 each. Other class prizes: 2nd Under 2100 was won by Chuck Unruh with 4 pts. Under 1900 was 1st $200 Tom Green with 4, followed with 3.5 points by Jim Berry and  Sal Martinez ($50 each). Under 1700: 1st - $200 (Dr. Jorge Montero), 2nd – Les Kline ($100). Under 1500 prizes were split by Robert L. Jones and the blind player Allen Miner ($150 each).

U.S. WOMEN’S OPEN - A U.S. Chess Federation National Championship

The 1st U.S. Women's Open featured a strong field of 20 players, 10 rated expert or above. Saheli Nath, and Indian player attending University of Texas at Dallas, won with 5/6, and $800. NM Iryna Zenyuk (2280) was clear second with 4.5, $500, and as the top American wins a slot in the 2010 U.S. Women's Championship. 3rd place ($300) was split between Chouchan Airapetian, Jennifer Acon, and Medina Parilla, each with 4 pts. Saheli Nath won the $100 Best Game Award offered by Harry Payne for her win over Zenyuk in Round 5.

5th Annual OKIE OPEN

This year's traditional open was won by IM Michael Brooks, whose 6/7 score bested a strong field and earned $500. There was a big tie for 2nd at 5/7 among Tim Steiner, Sergey Galant, Bran Whitcomb, Chris Niggel, Nathaniel Fast, Raymond Griffin, and Terry Wright. They split $600 for 2nd/3rd for $85 each. Class Prizes: Under 1800 - $450 split three ways between David McCann, Jeff Colbert, and T. Cheng. Under 1600 – ($450) was also split three ways by Bruce Wells, Jack Bussert, and Daryl Fouard. Under 1300 – 1st was won by Hans Chen ($300) with 3.5 points. 2nd with 3 pts was August Murdock, $200, and with 2.5 points tied for the $100 3rd place ($100) were R. Sarmento, R. Gudiseva, and I. Hossain.


This year's 8-player master round robin was the strongest ever, with an average rating over 2300, and featured several very talented young players, including 13-year-old Darwin Yang, and 15-year-old Conrad Holt. Holt finished in 3-way tie for first with IM Bryan Smith and IM Ray Kaufman. Crosstable


Our annual “Fischer-Random Speed Chess Pizza Bash” was won by IM Ray Kaufman with 6.5/8 over a very tough field of 20 players, mostly masters and experts. WIM Bayaraa Zorigt and FM Conrad Holt tied for 2nd place with 6/8.


The tournament was sponsored by IA Frank K. Berry, who was also chief director, assisted by Rob Jones, Steve Wharry, and Tom Braunlich. Look for detailed reports on Chess Life Online, and in Chess Life magazine. Official Cross Table: http://www.uschess.org/msa/XtblMain.php?200909071201.

The United States Chess Federation (USCF),
founded in 1939, serves as the governing body for chess in the United States and is now headquartered in Crossville, Tennessee. USCF is devoted to extending the role of chess in American society. It promotes the study and knowledge of the game of chess, for its own sake as an art and enjoyment, and as a means for the improvement of society. The USCF is a not-for-profit membership organization with over 80,000 members. For additional information on the USCF see: www.uschess.org.