Colorado Springs Chess News

The Knights Are Better Here!


Where Is The Expert Title When You Need One? (Part I)

Posted by Paul Anderson on July 15, 2010 at 12:25 PM

Game Of The Week


Recently, I was writing a newsletter about Dean Brown and his prolific tournament activity when I noticed a new link on the Member Services Area of the USCF’s ratings database. It was a link to the title history of Dean Brown (

I was a little surprised to see that Dean had earned a title, seeing as the USCF has only given out titles for crossing over the master rating (National Master) and maintaining a master rating for 300 games (Life Master). However, the USCF has now added a performance-based title system for several more categories that is retroactive for all tournaments in its database since 1991:


Rating, Title


1200 4th Category

1400 3rd Category

1600 2nd Category

1800 1st Category

2000 Candidate Master

2200 Life Master

2400 Life Senior Master


I was happy to see this long-debated idea finally implemented. There were several times in the past when this information would have made writing my newsletter easier.

Back in 2004, I was pouring over my database of chess results and decided to publish games from the only 3 experts I had beaten at that time (

“Well, I may not be an expert, but I have, on occasion, broken off the shackles of this class world and soared off into the heavens to touch the face of expert status. At G15, I have won 8 games against USCF-rated experts. At G30, I have won 3 times, and at G90, I have won 2 times. As impressive as my double-digit performance is on the surface, it turns out it was only against 3 different people. So, I figured it wouldn’t take me very long to thank those experts for allowing me, at least for a brief moment, to feel like I could teach chess to a bunch of novices.”

Since that time, I have increased my total victories to 23 over 7 different people. However, these numbers are only an estimate as ratings are a fluid thing.


You see, my criteria for determining whether I counted a win was based on the opponent’s USCF rating being at least 2000 at the time the game was played.

So, when I beat Jason Caldwell (4/12/05) when his club rating was 2115, I couldn’t count it, as his USCF rating was 1997. So, I missed adding another expert scalp to my trophy case by a lousy three points.

This ratings dilemma is meaningless to most people, but to a stat-obsessed guy like myself, it is filled with such irony that I had to play it up when I wrote about my victory over NM Josh Bloomer (

Again, my opponent had just fallen below a ratings cutoff when I get the victory. Josh was 2197, which would be significant to Josh if he hadn’t already crossed over 2200 and received his Master certificate.

Since it was another 3 point miss, I just had to crank up the Lynyrd Skynyrd song, “Gimme Three Steps” as I wrote the newsletter and tweak the lyrics a bit:

“And I know you don’t owe me, but I wish you would let me ask one favor from you; Say, won’t cha gimme three points, gimme three points mister, gimme three points or some more. Gimme three points, gimme three points mister, and you’ll never see me no more!”


Gimme Three Points


[Event "March Quad"]

[Site ""]

[Date "2006.03.21"]

[Round "3.1"]

[White "Bloomer, Josh"]

[Black "Anderson, Paul"]

[Result "0-1"]

[ECO "D12"]

[WhiteElo "2197"]

[BlackElo "1804"]

[PlyCount "146"]

[EventDate "2006.03.21"]


1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 c6 3. Nf3 d5 4. e3 Bf5 5. cxd5 cxd5 6. Qb3 Qb6 7. Qxb6 axb6 8.

Nc3 e6 9. Bb5+ Nc6 10. Ne5 Rc8 11. Bd2 Nd7 12. Nxd7 Kxd7 13. Rc1 Bd6 14. Ke2 h5

15. Na4 Bc7 16. Bb4 h4 17. Rc3 g5 18. Rhc1 Bd8 19. Rb3 g4 20. Be1 Kd6 21. Bb4+

Kd7 22. Bd2 Kd6 23. Bd3 Bxd3+ 24. Kxd3 Ra8 25. Nxb6 Rxa2 26. Bb4+ Kc7 27. Ba3

Kb8 28. Na4 Na5 29. Rb5 Nc4 30. Nc5 b6 31. Nd7+ Ka7 32. Rc3 f5 33. Ne5 Nxe5+

34. dxe5 Rh7 35. Rc1 Rc7 36. Rxc7+ Bxc7 37. Rb4 Bxe5 38. h3 gxh3 39. gxh3 Bf6

40. Ra4+ Kb7 41. Rf4 Ra1 42. Kd2 Rh1 43. Rf3 Kc6 44. Kc2 Kb5 45. Bd6 Ra1 46.

Bf8 Ra2 47. Ba3 Ra1 48. Bf8 Kc6 49. Bb4 Ra4 50. Be1 Rc4+ 51. Kb3 b5 52. Bb4

Bxb2 53. Bd2 Be5 54. Be1 Bd6 55. Bd2 b4 56. Kb2 Be5+ 57. Bc3 Bxc3+ 58. Kb3 Be5

59. e4 dxe4 60. Re3 Kc5 61. Re2 Rc3+ 62. Ka2 Rxh3 63. f3 Rxf3 64. Kb1 h3 65.

Kc2 h2 66. Re1 Rf2+ 67. Kc1 Rg2 68. Rh1 Rg1+ 69. Rxg1 hxg1=Q+ 70. Kd2 Kd4 71.

Kc2 Qf2+ 72. Kd1 Kd3 73. Kc1 Qc2# 0-1


This Week In Chess


On July 13th, the CSCC had 7 members in attendance. Most of the players joined the Swiss tournament (3SS, G20). Alex Torres showed up late but went unbeaten to finish in first. Here are the results:


Score, Player


2.5 Alex Torres

2.0 Paul Anderson

2.0 Buck Buchanan

2.0 Jeff Fox

0.5 Dean Brown

0.0 Mike Voight


July Panera Bread Thursday

By Dean Brown


Round 3 results:


Dan Picard over Kurt Kondracki

Spencer Shook over Gene Lucas

Ken MacRae over Paul Shepard


Results of 2010 Steel City Summer Sizzler

By Jerry Maier


4.0 Jeff Baffo

3.0 Ted Doykos

3.0 Jose A Llacza

3.0 Jerry Maier

2.5 Anthea Carson

2.0 Liz Wood

1.0 Bob Rountree

1.0 Alexander Freeman

1.0 Don Austin

1.0 Russ Stark

1.0 Kathy Schneider

1.0 Rob Hartelt


Prize Schedule:

1st Place $36.00 Jeff Baffo

2nd Place and U1500 ($30.00 & $25.00) Lt. Jose Llacza, Ted Doykos and Jerry Maier ($18.33 each)

U1300/Unr. $22.00 Liz Wood

Categories: 2010

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