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.


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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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FIDE's move
10:54 pm
Wed September 17, 2014

On Chess: World Champion Carlsen Had Extra Pressure While In St. Louis

Magnus Carlsen in St. Louis earlier this month
Credit Lennart Ootes| Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St.Louis

It’s not often that the World Champion of Chess gets his thunder stolen but, while here in St. Louis, GM Magnus Carlsen's moment away from the spotlight allowed him to tackle a serious decision.

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Arts & Culture
11:31 am
Thu September 11, 2014

On Chess: Eight Super Grandmasters Turn Into Coaches And Have Fun Skewering Each Other

Rex Sinquefield prepares to make a move as Grandmasters look on. Behind, from left, is commentator Maurice Ashley, Garry Kasparov, Yasser Seirawan and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave.
Credit Lennart Ootes | Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

It is a question commonly posed to Grandmasters -- business-suit wearing giants with perennially furrowed brows, constantly wrinkled above troubled looks of genuine stress -- can you still have fun?

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Fabiano Caruana
8:04 am
Thu September 4, 2014

On Chess: St. Louis Witnessing Chess History-As-It-Happens At Sinquefield Cup

Fabiano Caruana
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

When you’re claiming a page of history, you just never know who might write on it.

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From Miami To Italy
3:36 pm
Thu August 28, 2014

On Chess: Super GM Caruana Comes Home

American-Italian super-GM Fabiano Caruana signs an autograph during the 2014 Sinquefield Cup at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis.
Credit Lennart Ootes | CCSCSL

Make no mistake, we want him back.

In for his first visit to the U.S. Capital of Chess is Grandmaster Fabiano Caruana, one of only three players in the world with a chess rating that has surpassed the 2800 watermark. He’s here to pick a fight with the other two, Armenian GM Levon Aronian and World Champion GM Magnus Carlsen, as part of the 2014 Sinquefield Cup -- billed as the strongest chess tournament ever, for obvious reasons.

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Rise UP Festival
12:55 am
Thu August 21, 2014

On Chess: New Pocket Park Fills Formerly Vacant Lot In Old North St. Louis

The new chess pocket park
Credit Provided by the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

St. Louis owns and manages approximately 10,000 vacant lots of land that have come into its possession through tax foreclosure. Concentrations of these lots create barren wastelands of pavement, driving down property values while driving up social and environmental impacts.

Maintenance alone on these acquiesced estates — the overwhelming majority of which do not even contain a structure — encourages slow economic leak, altogether suggesting a need to embrace alternative approaches to urban land use.

Sounds like a job for chess.

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Chess Olympiad
10:06 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

On Chess: Millionaires And Missed Connections

GM Maurice Ashley is the promoter of the Millionaire Chess Open, the upcoming tournament with the largest prize fund ever.
Credit Provided by Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis

This is the busy season of chess, with lots going on in the scene. Scattered thoughts, like pawns, need attending:

Maurice Ashley is in town, looking for millionaires.

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