Saturday, September 17, 2011

2011 City of Montreal Open Chess Championships

More photos and post-tournament follow-ups! Thanks to all who took and submitted photographs (including Mr. Don). The photographs below are from, I believe, Claude Provencher, sent by Bernard Ouimet. Merci!

The Championnat sent me a link to WGM Alina L'Ami's article about her experiences in Canada and at the 2011 Montreal Championnat at the Spanish site for Chessbase - it's in Spanish but the photographs speak a thousand words in all languages! Three of Alina's games are featured at the end of the article:

Alina's world. Canada ? Chess !

Canada does not evoke chess at first. Rather, one thinks of ice hockey, maple syrup or large forest (at this time of the year the foliage is turning gold and red). During her trip to Montréal and Québec City, Alina l'Ami experienced chess so intensely that from now on the game will remain associated with the most septentrional country of the American continent. In just three days she played a five round open tournament in Montréal and gave two simuls. She learned many things about Canadians : they do not lock their doors, pedestrians have no respect for the red traffic lights, they eat French fries with cheese and brown sauce and put maple syrup in their coffee. And as chessplayers, they are much stronger than their Elo rating indicates.

This was Alina's first visit to Canada but we hope it will not be her last! Check Spelling WGM Alina L'Ami (left) and Myriam Roy (right) - Myriam played in the A Section (along with Alina), a brave chess femme! WGM L'Ami receives her memorial and certificate for winning the title "Women's Champion of the Montreal Open." This photo makes me smile - it seems all of the men in the photo were enamoured of the lovely WGM L'Ami :) Unfortunately, I am not able to super-size the photo (a step back from the tools I used to have here at Blogger) so that you can really see the expressions on the men's faces! Mixing it up. This photo speaks for itself. WGM L'Ami v. Emile Trottier. One of the winners of a Goddesschess class prize! Each winner receives a Certificate in addition to her cash prize.

One of the more popular new features at the Championnat this year was the free buffet (two photos below). Playing chess is hard work and one works up an appetite! The average chessplayer also does not have a lot of "spare" money to pay for meals on tournament days and they end up wasting money eating bad food out of vending machines! Much better to provide nourishing fresh fruits, vegetables, cheeses and sandwiches! A lot of work behind the scenes went into providing the buffet. Our sincere thanks to all of those volunteers - we love you! Setting the clocks. Action on the top boards. "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain..." Quote from the 1939 film "The Wizard of Oz." Here is our very own 2011 wizard in charge of putting up the top boards game action on the large screen so all can watch.

Goddesschess first got involved with the City of Montreal Open Chess Championships in 2009. Our initial goal was to branch out our sponsorship in Canada, which is the home of one of our principals and founders. To that end, we surveyed a list of upcoming events throughout Canada and found the Championnat. We contacted the organizers with an offer of a small sponsorship of cash prizes for the ladies. The rest, as the saying goes, is Herstory...

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