Epic Success and Epic Fail

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For the last week I have been in Minnesota, playing in the Minnesota International Chess Festival, which was organized superbly by Alex Betaneli. It may have been the strongest event held in Minnesota since the HB Global Challenge in 2004. But that event was done in by its enormous ambition: a half-million dollar prize fund, […]

Titled Arena won by Penguins and Hot Tubs

In this blog post you will see the most discussion of the #193rd ranked player that you will ever see in one of these reports. But first! Let’s discuss the winner.

GM Andrew Tang won the August 2021 Bullet Titled Arena yesterday by a comfortable 25 point margin. Others kept pace with Tang, until he pulled away with about 45 minutes remaining by winning an incredible 15 games in a row. Streak scoring makes this sort of thing hard to come back against. Finishing in 2nd was the anonymous GM Arka50, 3rd was the anonymous GM Grey_parrot. NM Atulya Vaidya gave commentary on our YouTube and Twitch channels.

https://youtu.be/jjkka3bi3ew?t=73

GM Magnus Carlsen dominated the first thirty minutes, in both score and attention. He streamed the event from a hot tub in an undisclosed location.

Magnus played an undefeated nine games, and was leading the event when he withdrew. We received reports that both the water and surrounding air were too cold for him to continue. Given that he was playing from a cell phone in a vat of cold water, he was a trooper to stick it out for as long as he did. Hot Tub streams are a bit of a meme among the Twitch crowd and I’m determined to not write four paragraphs explaining the joke. The TLDR is that Twitch streamers began streaming from hot tubs as a paper-thin excuse to show some skin, Twitch pushed back against it, much fun and memery was had by all.

The next Titled Arena is with a 3+0 time control on September 4th. Enjoy some puzzles from the Titled Arena here:

https://lichess.org/study/9cTwHCwW/IbmTlhdG