New US Champ + Top 10 Chess Blogs

by on May 17, 2009

I have two exciting things to write about today! First, the 2009 U.S. championship concluded in dramatic style. Yesterday, in round eight, Robert Hess continued his amazing run by defeating defending champion Yury Shulman. Meanwhile, Hikaru Nakamura stomped on Michael Brooks to tie Hess with a score of 6-2.

This set up a last round where both of the co-leaders were young, and neither was a Russian expatriate. I have a hunch that hasn’t happened for a very long time. I have nothing against Russians, of course, but I think it’s a really good thing for American chess when we can generate our own talent. It’s even more exciting when the two leaders are so young. Who would have thought that, at age 21, Hikaru Nakamura would be the older of the two players atop the leaderboard going into the final round? (Hess is 17 years old.)

In the last round Varuzhan Akobian held Hess to a draw, while Nakamura beat Josh Friedel to take undisputed first place with a score of 7-2. Hess finished tied for second and third with Alexander Onischuk, who beat another wunderkind, Roy Robson, in the final round. Although Hess didn’t manage to win, this has to be considered a breakthrough tournament for him. And, as consolation, he didn’t have to miss his plane flight home. (In the round 8 video at the official tournament website, he says that if there were a playoff for first he would probably have to miss his plane flight! When he made his plane reservation he had no idea that he would be in contention for first place.)

And now for something completely different … I found out today that “dana blogs chess” was rated by as one of the top 10 chess blogs! Here is the list, in case you want to check it out. The top ten blogs are as follows (in alphabetical order):

I was already familiar with most, but not all, of the blogs on this list. This is some fine company, and I am honored to make the list! However, any top-10 list that doesn’t include Elizabeth Vicary’s blog has to be taken with a grain of salt …

By the way, has lots of other top-ten lists, some of them definitely worth a look or a chuckle (top ten pregnancy blogs; top ten tea blogs; ten blogs word nerds will love; etc.) Definitely a site to check out if you want to know what is going on in the blogosphere.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan Schmidt May 18, 2009 at 5:39 am

Congratulations! I enjoy your posts a lot.

One other chess blog that should really be in the top 10 list is Streatham & Brixton:


Macauley May 19, 2009 at 8:26 pm

Playoff or no, Hess did change his flight in the end, and stayed through Sunday’s closing night festivities.



ColonelCrockett May 30, 2009 at 7:18 am

That’s cool that you made the list. I agree that Liz’s blog should be on the list and S&B too.

I take issue with the ‘top ten’ list because the criteria for selection is unclear to me. Ironically, my site is a top feature there ( I don’t put a whole lot of stock into the listing but the recognition is nice. Thanks for the link. 😉


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