The recent success of the first CCSCSL tournament of 2009, the Winter Open, has brought new hope for the success of tournament chess in the Saint Louis region. Forty One players braved the cold to ensure a full prize fund payout on January 17th. With the apparent equation for success firmly in hand, the CCSCSL tournament directors have focused their attention to the "Knights" tournaments. With a little more awareness of the Knight's Series, and the exciting opportunity it presents to all CCSCSL members, the Knights Series should enjoy similar success in 2009!
The Knights Series are month long tournaments, where one game a week is played every Wednesday night. The entry fee is $10, requiring USCF, MCA, and annual CCSCSL memberships to play. Class prizes are awarded based on the number of entrants to each tournament. The games have a time control of G/90 and the number of rounds depends on the number of Wednesdays in the month. Each week, players check in before the round, and pairings are made right before the round. This adds an aura of mystery as players are able to speculate about whom they will play. Many of the players partaking in the Knights Series are fanatics about the structure and play in it each and every month.
Besides the intriguing time control and structure, the Knights Series has the distinct honor of being the ONLY qualifier for the club championship tournament to be held in March. The Club Championship will be a six player round robin, comprised of each tournament's qualifier, where the ultimate winner will be crowned the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis Champion! Imagine 20 years down the line, after the CCSCSL has really flourished in Saint Louis, being able to claim that you were the inaugural CCSCSL champion! This exciting opportunity to be the first CCSCSL champion is why everyone should be clamoring to qualify in one of the monthly Knight's tournaments. When you think about other famous chess clubs, with storied traditions, like the Marshall Chess Club and the Mechanic's Institute, only one player can claim to be their first club champion. The Knights Series is your opportunity to immortalize yourself in the club's history while still in its infancy.