GM Alex Ivanov, IM Raset Ziatdinov Top Stratton Mountain
International Grandmaster Alex Ivanov of Brookline, Massachusetts tied for First in the 4th annual Stratton Mountain Open, held April 25-27 at the picturesque Stratton Mountain Inn Resort in Vermont's scenic Green Mountains. Sharing in the victory was International Master Raset Ziatdinov, originally from Uzbakistan, who now resides in Irvington, NY. They both won their first four games handily, Ziatdinov opting for the 3-Day Schedule while Ivanov went with his traditional 2-Day option. After drawing each other in the last round to clinch a tie for First, they each left with $325 for the weekend. FM Allan Bennett of Chelmsord, Massachusetts tied for 3rd-4th with Neil Basescu of Irvington, NY, giving them each $54, while Dale Lyons of Milton, Vermont defeated his last-round Class Prize rival to win the $217 Under 2100 Prize.
Larry Eldridge of Massachusetts shared First in the Under 1800 Section with Sheel Dandekar of Nashua, New Hampshire. Both won $244 for finishing 4-1. Niru Dandekar (of the Sheel-Niru father-son duo) outdid the old man, capturing Clear First in the Under 1500 Section, along with $325. Andrew Palmer of Bennington, Vermont and Shaun M. Smith of Monticello, NY tied for 2nd-3rd with 4 points a piece, each netting $136.
The 63 entries (and 2 re-entries) actually exceeded the expected turnout, and, in a scenario now familiar to the Continental Chess Association's Vermont events, all the prizes were consequently raised over the advertised amounts-- as everyone remembered happening in the November 1996 Stratton Mountain event as well.
Steve Immitt directed for the CCA, setting a dubious personal record as well-- directing the Stratton Mountain Open and a concurrent 57-player elementary tournament on Sunday-- with a case of pneumonia.