Winners of each section won an official USCF National Championship and earned $300 for chess lessons. All participants also won ChessKid.com and Chess.com gear, memberships and other prizes.
After five long rounds and plenty of surprises and drama, winners of the Third Annual ChessKid Online National Invitational Championship are:
6 and Under - Vishnu Vanapalli (4.5/5), NC
8 and Under - Chinguun Bayaraa (3.0/5), CA
10 and Under - Kevin Chor (4.5/5), AZ (in Armageddon playoff over Alexander Costello (4.5/5), CA)
12 and Under - NM Ruifeng Li (4.0/5), TX
Girls 13 and Under - Emily Nguyen (4.5/5), TX
Prior reports are here -
Round 1 - click here for games/report
Round 2 - click here for games/report
Round 3 - click here for games/report
Round 4 - click here for games/report
Live broadcasts were hosted at ChessKid TV with FM Mike Klein and Chess.com/tv with IM Danny Rensch.
Congratulations to all the players. Just getting invited was a big honor. Good luck in all your future Pan-American and World Youth and National Scholastic events!
We'd like to thank Chief TD Kele Perkins for months of organizational work and timely directing this weekend. ChessKid is also grateful to all the local chess clubs around the country that hosted, and the parents for assisting in getting everything ready!
Two boys went 3-0 Friday and Saturday, then drew Sunday morning - Vishnu Vanapalli and Lucas Foerster-Yialamas (also known as ThirstyDonkey on a few ChessKid videos!). That set up a final round where they were both tied with 3.5/4. Vishnu won thanks to a late knight fork, but Lucas couldn't quite pull out yet another endgame win. Commentator Rensch thinks if he had not traded rooks late then he could have won instead of drawing. So, Vishnu finished as the champion!
Raphael Manahan (1.0) - Vishnu Vanapalli (4.5) 0-1
Andrew Chen (0.5) - Anshul Gokul (2.5) 0-1
Arthur Xu (2.5) - Lucas Foerster-Yialamas (4.0) 1/2-1/2
6 and Under - Round 5 Games
Manahan - Vanapalli
Chen - Gokul
Xu - Foerster-Yialamas
Justin Wang (2.5) - Chinguun Bayaraa (3.0) 1-0
Benjamin Medina (2.0) - Andrew Tang (2.5) 0-1
Atreya Vaidya (2.5) - Winston Ni (2.5) 1-0
8 and Under - Round 5 Games
Wang - Bayaraa
Medina - Tang
Vaidya - Ni
Costello (4.5/5) thus finished second. Kevin Yang (3.0/5) was alone in third, Anthony Ge (1.5/5) took fourth, Daniel Levkov fifth (1.0/5) and Ajay Krishnan sixth (0.5/5).
Kevin Chor (4.5) Alexander Costello (4.5) 1/2-1/2
Ajay Krishnan (0.5) - Anthony Ge (1.5) 1/2-1/2
Kevin Yang (3.0) - Daniel Levkov (1.0) 1-0
10 and Under - Round 5 Games
Top-rated player in the event, Ruifeng Li (2409) had already scored two wins and two draws against the four other masters in his section. All that he had to do was beat the Expert, Marcell Szabo, to clinch clear first. He played the Exchange French and eventually outplayed Black to become the champion with an undefeated 4.0/5.
Gone are the days when simply becoming a master before at the age of 12 gave you an easy event. That's the beauty of the ChessKid Online Nationals - all five games are incredibly competitive. Finishing second was John Burke (3.0/5), while Alburt Lu (2.5/5) took third. Fourth was a tie between Praveen Balakrishnan and Marcell (both 2.0/5) and sixth was Michael Wang (1.5/5).
Praveen Balakrishnan (2.0) - Michael Wang (1.5) 0-1
John Burke (3.0) - Albert Lu (2.5) 1/2-1/2
Ruifeng Li (4.0) - Marcell Szabo (2.0) 1-0
12 and Under - Round 5 Games
Li - Szabo
Anupama Rajendra (3.0) - Priya Trakru (3.0) 0-1
Camille Kao (2.5) - Julia Sevilla (0.5) 1/2-1/2
Emily Nguyen (4.5) - Chenyi Zhao (1.5) 1-0
Girls 13 and Under - Round 5 Games