Brian Jerauld

Brian Jerauld is a chess instructor to area students, including his own children, and a student of the game himself through the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis. He is also a Mizzou journalist with a decade of experience writing about boats, sports and other odds and ends. This column is a weekly look around St. Louis, the U.S. Capital of Chess.


Big Game Tonight
6:07 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

On Chess: Our Team-Spirited Arch Bishops Are Poised To Become Chess League Champs

Wesley So has performed brilliantly for the team.
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

Championship droughts are no laughing matter. And there’s no doubt things have been feeling a little stale around here lately: It’s been three whole years since St. Louis touted a championship title.

Tonight, however, our great city’s sport sufferings may come to an end.

Read more
Showdown in St. Louis
10:15 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

On Chess: Seven Questions With Hikaru Nakamura

Hikaru Nakamura is ranked No. 1 in the U.S.
Credit Provided by Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

You’re back in town for the Showdown in St. Louis, a five-round match for $100,000 against the World No. 4 player, Levon Aronian. The Showdown is not a world-circuit event in which you normally play -- is an event like this still important to you, even though it’s just an exhibition?

Read more
Watching Sevian
10:09 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

On Chess: St. Louis Could Play Host To Major Milestones

Hikaru Nakamura is currently ranked No. 1 in the U.S.
Credit Provided by Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

Next week, the Central West End chess club will again be joined by the  top player in the United States, Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura, who returns for a special exhibition match with one of his main rivals from the world stage, Armenia’s Levon Aronian.

Read more
Walter Browne
10:43 pm
Wed November 5, 2014

On Chess: November Features Champions Past, Present And Future

Walter Browne in 1972
Credit Wikipedia

It is, perhaps, the pinnacle chess week of the year, with several dazzling headlines labeling every level of the sport. When things get chaotic, keeping track of your lines can be difficult ... scattered thoughts, like pawns, need attending:

Read more
Aviv Friedman
11:07 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

On Chess: The Grandmasters' Sherpa Shows St. Louis the Way

Aviv Friedman
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

The title of Grandmaster is the highest a chess player can achieve, a moniker that translates literally as one of the best of the best. These titles are awarded by FIDE, the World Chess Federation, and are without a doubt quite rare: Not more than 1,500 players in history have been officially named Grandmaster.

The St. Louis Chess Club, however, has found someone even more special: The Grandmasters’ coach.

Read more
The Right Moves
8:38 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

On Chess: Miriam School Uses Chess As Behavioral Therapy Tool

First-grader Jay Mainard, far left, uses the weekly chess club at the Miriam School in Webster Groves as a tool to combat learning disabilities.
Credit Provided by the Miriam School

Not long after kindergarten began, Jason Mainard began noticing problems in his son’s mood. Socially, the boy wasn’t adhering to the way other kids played. Emotionally, he wasn’t responding the way most kids do in their first year of school. Traditional characteristics that describe a first classroom experience were few, replaced instead by signs of depression, signs of frustration.

Calls home from teachers confirmed the father’s concerns.

Read more
Wesley So
11:36 pm
Wed October 15, 2014

On Chess: Webster University Star Wins Millionaire Chess Tournament

Millionaire Chess Open organizers Amy Lee and GM Maurice Ashley award Webster University GM Wesley So with a $100,000 birthday present.
Credit Billy Johnson | Millionaire Chess Open

Las Vegas will do just fine if it never sees Wesley So again. The brand-new adult celebrated his 21st birthday in the right city, but he did it in all the wrong ways.

He didn’t pull a single slot, didn’t throw a single die. And he never once relied on the hilarious notion of luck during a week-long visit in a town that banks off the very idea. He was not spotted out late, stumbling around the Strip any night -- and to the contrary: The work So put in each morning is circumstantial proof that he achieved bedtime at an hour likely outlawed in the City that Never Sleeps.

Read more
Oct. 11
9:25 pm
Wed October 8, 2014

On Chess: National Chess Day Is Officially Unofficial

Time for chess
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

This Saturday, Oct. 11 is National Chess Day -- though only unofficially, because nobody cares.

That’s not from a lack of continued effort on the part of chess players, however, as plenty have cared about such a recognized holiday dating all the way back to its inception in 1976.

Read more
Arts & Culture
9:39 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

On Chess: King's Game Mirrors Central West End As Vibrant Cultural Cornerstone

Chess is as much a part of life as, well...
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

The Central West End has been recognized as one of the Top 10 Great Neighborhoods in America by the American Planning Association, for reasons that won’t surprise anyone from around here.

Read more
Large Delegation
4:13 pm
Wed September 24, 2014

On Chess: Team USA Is On Track For Several Medals At World Youth Championship

Ashritha Eswaran is a member of the U.S. team who is doing well so far.
Credit Provided by the family

Local Grandmaster Ben Finegold is in Durban, South Africa, this week representing Team USA as part of the 2014 World Youth Chess Championship. The international competition separates its field into six categories, from under-8 to under-18 in both girls-only and open sections, and crowns 12 World Champions annually.

Read more