Norm Hunting Season Begins at Marshall
By Dr.Frank Brady   
June 12, 2008
Frank Brady in a recent lecture by GM Yury Averbakh. Photo J.M. Calisi
The New York International  (June 21 to 25) will be the strongest tournament held at the Marshall Chess Club in decades, and will hearken back to the days when Bobby Fischer played his Game of the Century in our Great Hall. This all-Master tournament will offer $10,000 in cash prizes, guaranteed, as follows: $5,000 first, $2,500 second, $1,500 third, and $1,000 fourth.  There will also be a special cash brilliancy prize.  To date, Grandmasters Jaan Ehlvest, Julio Becerra, Renier Gonzalez, Sergey Erenburg (of Israel) and Carlos Garcia Palermo (of Italy) are committed to playing, among other GMs, and International Masters, in addition to other FIDE Masters.  This is a 9-round Swiss System, with 200 Grand Prix points. GM and IM norms may be possible.  Housing:  There are inexpensive hotels with walking distance of the Marshall, and dormitory rooms are available at the St. John’s Manhattan campus for $65 per night (one subway stop from the Marshall).  See June Chess Life TLA for details, or call the Marshall Chess Club, 23 West 10th Street, New York, N.Y. 10023 Tel: 212-477-3716 (best after 6 PM weekdays and after 12 noon on Saturday and Sunday). 

For serious norm hunters, this is just the start of the norm-hunting season. The Philadelphia International (June 26-30) offers up 120 Grand Prix points and good norm chances provided enough foreign and titled players enter. The Philadelphia International precedes the World Open (July 2-6) at the same site, in which norms are also possible in the 5&7-day schedules, with the same caveat- if there are enough foreign and titled entries.

Just in time for players to fly home from the U.S. Open in Dallas, Chris Bird organizes the New England masters (August 11-15) in Pawtucket (near Providence), Rhode Island.