Reports | May 02, 2012 13:50

Vachier-Lagrave wins 2nd Grand Prix FFE

Vachier-Lagrave wins Grand Prix FFE, beats Fressinet in the final

Last weekend Maxime Vachier-Lagrave won the second part of the 'Grand Prix FFE'. The French number three, who beat French number one Laurent Fressinet in the final, earned € 4,000 for two days of rapid chess.

Despite losing the first game in the final, Vachier-Lagrave emerged as the winner against Fressinet

Event Grand Prix FFE  | PGN
Dates April 28th-29th, 2012
Location Nancy, France
System 9-round Swiss followed by a knockout
Players

The strongest players were Vachier-Lagrave, Istratescu, Fressinet, Gharamian, Bacrot, Naiditsch, Nikolic, Barsov, Shchekachev and Feller

Prize fund € 15,000 with a € 4,000 first prize

On April 28th and 29th one of the strongest rapid chess events of the year in France was held: the 'Grand Prix FFE' (where FFE stands for Fédération Française des Échecs). The tournament took place in Nancy, in north-east France and had a very strong field. Among the 19 grandmasters, the 8 best French GMs on the FIDE list were present, as well as Germany's number one Arkadij Naidisch and the legendary Ulf Andersson.

On Saturday, seven players qualified from a very strong open – a 9-round Swiss with 15 minutes and 3 seconds increment on the clock. In this tournament no less than 194 players of 14 nationalities participated and eventually GMs Vachier-Lagrave and Gharamian finished shared first with 7.5/9. Vlad Tkachiev, Laurent Fressinet, Andrei Istratescu, Etienne Bacrot and Sebastien Feller also qualified with 7/9 and joined the invited local player Christian Bauer (French number 4). Surprisingly, not a single foreign GM managed to qualify.

The twelve qualifiers for "Knockout Sunday"

In this tournament a total of 27 category prizes were handed out, for the best women, the best young and veteran players and for the best players in different rating categories.

Final standings 9-round Swiss

Pl Title Name Rapid Fed Pts TOR TB1 TB2 FFE
1 g VACHIER-LAGRAVE Maxime 2840 FRA 7.5 2827 47 40 2753
2 g GHARAMIAN Tigran 2740 FRA 7.5 2789 46 40,5 2767
3 g TKACHIEV Vladislav 2570 FRA 7.0 2773 48 39,5 2848
4 g FRESSINET Laurent 2750 FRA 7.0 2769 46,5 40 2753
5 g ISTRATESCU Andrei 2820 FRA 7.0 2762 46 37,5 2644
6 g BACROT Etienne 2740 FRA 7.0 2747 47 38,5 2724
7 g FELLER Sebastien 2590 FRA 7.0 2741 47,5 38,5 2789
8 g SANIKIDZE Tornike 2490 GEO 7.0 2725 46,5 39 2816
9 g JANKOVIC Alojzije 2540 CRO 7.0 2722 45 38 2786
10 g NIKOLIC Predrag 2670 BIH 7.0 2702 47,5 38 2691
11 g ANDERSSON Ulf 2540 SWE 7.0 2542 43,5 36 2507
12 m MILLIET Sophie 2470 FRA 7.0 2538 41,5 35  
13 g AGREST Evgenij 2540 SWE 7.0 2527 41,5 36 2466
14 f DONCHENKO Alexander 2500 GER 7.0 2423 41 34,5  
15 g NAIDITSCH Arkadij 2720 GER 6.5 2590 44,5 34,5  
16 g SHCHEKACHEV Andrei 2620 FRA 6.5 2588 44 36 2545
17 g WIRIG Anthony 2530 FRA 6.5 2518 43 36 2478
18 f IDER Borya 2570 FRA 6.5 2509 43,5 34,5 2480
19 f WEBER Tom 2290 LUX 6.5 2402 42 33 2520
20   BUDISIN Stanislav 2090 SUI 6.5 2275 38,5 30,5 2367
21   DAUBENFELD Gilles 2150 LUX 6.5 2213 38 32 2318
22 g FEDORCHUK Sergey A. 2590 UKR 6.0 2572 46 37 2558
23 g FARGERE Francois 2580 FRA 6.0 2485 40,5 33,5 2433
24 m MONROY Charles 2500 FRA 6.0 2459 43,5 34,5 2409
25 m SKRIPCHENKO Almira 2450 FRA 6.0 2410 43 32,5  
26 gf BEREND Elvira 2320 LUX 6.0 2298 40,5 34 2271
27 m NEZAR Mustapha 2290 FRA 6.0 2294 38,5 32 2291
28 f LE CORRE Benjamin 2380 FRA 6.0 2292 41,5 31 2128
29   MAYER Philippe 2430 FRA 6.0 2258 37,5 30  
30   LUSTIG Mickael 2040 FRA 6.0 2213 40,5 31 2391

On Sunday the system was a knockout with mini-matches of two games of 15 minutes plus 3 seconds increment, and another mini-match of two blitz games (3 minutes plus 2 seconds) in case of a tie.

Vachier-Lagrave won the event by defeating Tkachiev 1.5-0.5 in Quarter-final, Bacrot 2-0 in the Semi-final and Fressinet after losing game 1 in the Final, winning the second and then winning both blitz games.

The Quarter-finals in action

All games by Vachier-Lagrave

PGN file

The tournament was the second leg of the Grand Prix FFE and in fact Vachier-Lagrave had also won the first leg, in January of this year. The 'Frenchman with two names' obviously has a big lead in the current Grand Prix FFE rankings (here in PDF). The next Grand Prix events will be in Aix-les-Bains (21-22 July), Villandry (6-7 October) and the Final will be held in Bastia (dates not known yet).

Thanks to organizer Christophe Philippe

Editors's picture
Author: Editors
Chess.com

Comments

nickeur's picture

Nice report and good prize fund for such event. I hope Vachier-Lagrave comes back soon to the top.

Janis Nisii's picture

I'm very happy for Maxime and I hope he comes back to the top soon, as well, but he's not the number 1 French player. He's the top French players with two names, of course, probably the world's top with 2 names, but excluding the number of names he's 3rd in the French list.

Peter Doggers's picture

Thx, corrected.

Thomas's picture

How do you define "two names"? Dominguez Perez, Bruzon Batista, Vallejo Pons, Wang Hao, Wang Yue, Le Quang Liem - all currently ahead of the number one with two names separated by a hyphen ... .

Janis Nisii's picture

LOL Thomas, I was just kidding. Korchnoi once mentioned him as "The Frenchman with two names" in an interview on NIC, and since then he jokes about it himself (for example it was in his ICC notes). I'm amused you actually went to check, though :)

Ians's picture

Yes Vachier-Lagrave has a good potential , but i read he was not dedicating himself entirely to chess , his priority being studying at the school/university , also he does not have a world class trainer like many of the young 2700 players .

His games are interesting , he can be lethal in tactics and complicated positions , however he lost a lot of rating points this last year , so he'll have to work hard to get in the top 30 again , this victory will certainly boost his belief and confidence , so that's a good news , although it's not classical time control

sulutas's picture

The miniature in LaGrave-Bacrot game (the number 11 in the list) is very surprising as Etienne B. looks like a 1500-rated player there.

Your comment

By posting a comment you are agreeing to abide our Terms & Conditions