UK Open Blitz Championship

There will be eight 15-round qualifying Swiss tournaments played in different cities around the United Kingdom on Saturday, 8th September. Eligible players will be able to enter one qualifying tournament of their choice. The top two players in each qualifier will qualify for the Final on 1st December 2018, played at a date and venue to be announced. The top two female players in each qualifier will qualify for a Women’s Final, held concurrently. Both Finals and the qualifiers combined will have a total prize fund in excess of £5,000

The qualifying venues are —

Belfast – The Pavilion, Stormont Stormont Estate, Upper Newtownards Road, Belfast BT4 3TA 
Birmingham – Quinborne Community Centre, Ridgacre Road, Quinton, Birmingham B32 2TW
Bristol – Bristol Grammar School, University Roadd, Bristol BS8 1SR
Cardiff – Radisson Park Inn Hotel, Cardiff North, Circle Way East, Llanederyn, Cardiff CF23 9XF
Edinburgh – Broughton High School, 29 East Fettes Avenue, Edinburgh EH4 1EG
London – The Rugby Portobello, 221 Walmer Road, London W11 4EY
Manchester – Ukrainian Social Club, 99 Castle St, Bolton BL2 1JP
Newcastle – The Royal Grammar School, Eskdale Terrace, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4DX

*It will be near the centre of Newcastle

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Entrants so farclick here

Rules

Eligibility
There is no geographic or citizenship restriction on entry to this tournament.

Qualifying
There will be 8 qualifying tournaments held in different locations in the United Kingdom —

Qualifier Venue
Belfast The Pavilion, Stormont Stormont Estate, Upper Newtownards Road, Belfast BT4 3TA 
Birmingham Quinborne Community Centre, Ridgacre Road, Quinton, Birmingham B32 2TW
Bristol Bristol Grammar School, University Road, Bristol BS8 1SR
Cardiff Radisson Park Inn Hotel, Cardiff North, Circle Way East, Llanederyn, Cardiff CF23 9XF
Edinburgh Broughton High School, 29 East Fettes Avenue, Edinburgh EH4 1EG
London The Rugby Portobello, 221 Walmer Road, London W11 4EY
Manchester Ukrainian Social Club, 99 Castle St, Bolton BL2 1JP
Newcastle The Royal Grammar School, Eskdale Terrace, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4DX

The Newcastle venue will be in the centre of the city, and will be published in due course.
The entry fee is £20. Players may choose to play in any one of these qualifying tournaments.
All qualifiers will be played on Saturday, 8th September, 2018

Each qualifier will be a 15-round FIDE-rated Swiss tournament, with the following schedule —

Round Time Round Time Round Time
Round 1 11.00 Round 6 13.30 Round 11 16.00
Round 2 11.25 Round 7 13.55 Round 12 16.25
Round 3 11.50 Round 8 14.20 Round 13 16.50
Round 4 12.15 Round 9 14.45 Round 14 17.15
Round 5 12.40 Round 10 15.10 Round 15 17.40

In the event of a tie, the tie-breaks will be as follows —

1. Direct Encounter (if possible)
2. Median-Buchholz 2
3. Median-Buchholz
4. Buchholz
5. Tournament Performance Rating
6. Drawing of Lots

The top 2 players in each qualifier will qualify for the Final. The two highest-placed female players will qualify for the Women’s Final. If a female player finishes in the top 2 places, then she may choose whether to play in the Final or the Women’s Final.

If fewer than 2 women enter a qualifying event, then the highest-scoring female player(s) in any of the eight qualifiers who did not qualify will be invited to play in the Women’s Final. In the event of this being tied, then the player with the highest Tournament Performance Rating on that score will qualify. Players who do not participate in a qualifier will not be invited to play in the Final.

If fewer than 24 players enter a qualifying tournament, the ECF reserves the right to choose an alternative format for the tournament, and some of the above rules may be overridden as a result. If this happens, this will be communicated to all entrants to that particular qualifier.

Each qualifying tournament will be played as one Swiss system tournament. In addition to this, the players will be allocated a category of 16 players or part thereof based on their initial seeding. For example, if there are 48 entries to a qualifying tournament, then there will be three categories of 16, with players 1 to 16 in Category A, 17 to 32 in Category B and 33 to 48 in Category C. Where the number of entries is not a multiple of 16, the categories will have fewer than 16 players, and the higher categories will be larger. For example, if there were 50 entries to a qualifying tournament, then there will be four categories, and Category A and B will have 13 players, and Category C and D will have 12 players. The Organiser may vary from the above rules on categories only to prevent players of the same rating being assigned to different categories. At each qualifier, a list of players in each category shall be published as soon as practicable, but in all cases not later than the start of Round 6. A category prize of £50 will be awarded to the highest-scoring player in the group. In the event of a tie, the lower-rated player will win the prize. If more than one player has the same rating, then the prize money will be shared.

If a qualifier fails to confirm their place in a Final by a deadline specified by the Organiser, then that player will lose their qualifying place, and the next player in the ranking of that qualifier will be invited to replace them.

A player’s initial seeding will be determined in the following order —

1. FIDE Blitz Rating (September 2018)
2. FIDE Rapidplay Rating (September 2018)
3. FIDE Rating (September 2018)
4. Other Rating Assigned by the Organiser. This will normally be a player’s national rating. The rating assigned with this process will also be used to calculate a player’s Tournament Performance Rating as per the tie-breaks above.

The time limit will be all moves in 3 minutes plus 2 seconds per move.

Final & Women’s Final
The Finals will be played on Saturday, 1st December, 2018
The time limit will be all moves in 3 minutes plus 2 seconds per move.

The Finals will be a 16-player FIDE-rated Round Robin tournament, with the following schedule —

Round Time Round Time Round Time
Round 1 12.00 Round 6 14.15 Round 11 16.30
Round 2 12.20 Round 7 14.35 Round 12 16.50
Round 3 12.40 Round 8 14.55 Round 13 17.10
Round 4 13.00 Round 9 15.15 Round 14 17.30
Round 5 13.20 Round 10 15.35 Round 15 17.50

The pairings for the Finals will be drawn randomly in advance of the tournament.

In the event of a tie, the tie-breaks will be as follows —
1. Direct Encounter
2. Sonnenborn-Berger
3. Koya System
4. Tournament Performance Rating, calculated using the players’ ratings in the following order –

1. FIDE Blitz Rating (November 2018)
2. FIDE Rapidplay Rating (November 2018)
3. FIDE Rating (November 2018)
4. Other Rating Assigned by the Organiser. This will normally be a player’s national rating.
5. The tie will remain unbroken, and any prize money for the tied positions will be shared

The prize money will be as follows —

Position Final Women’s Final
1st £1000.00 £500.00
2nd £600.00 £300.00
3rd £400.00 £200.00
4th £300.00 £150.00
5-8th £200.00 £100.00
9-16th £100.00 £50.00

Explanation of Tie-Breaks Used
Please see the explanation of the tie-breaks as described in the FIDE Handbook here —
http://fide.com/fide/handbook.html?id=187&view=article

With regard to Buchholz tie-breaks, players may wish to also read Section F in the above link, regarding the handling of Unplayed Games.

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