For more information, please contact:
Mr Michael Khodarkovsky
Grand Chess Tour Spokesperson
Phone: +1 201 317 8581
December 17, 2018
For Immediate Release
Grand Chess Tour Adding Additional Stops and Official Branding Partner
Tour to include events on four continents in 2019
Saint Louis, MO, December 17, 2018 – The Grand Chess Tour (GCT) is pleased to announce that the 2019 Grand Chess Tour will be expanded to include a minimum of six regular season events. The tour will once again culminate in a Final featuring matches between the top placed qualifiers. Three exciting new events are already confirmed for 2019 including tournaments in Africa and Asia for the first-time. The Grand Chess Tour is also pleased to announce that Gameplan Sports Pvt. Ltd, one of India's foremost corporate and sports branding agencies, has been appointed as an official sponsorship and branding partner.
The Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz tournament will be replaced by two new rapid and blitz events which will be held in India and Cote d’Ivoire, as well as the addition of a classical tournament in Croatia. The 2019 regular tour season will therefore consist of a minimum of six tournaments and will feature at least two classical and four rapid and blitz events. A minimum of ten players will be offered full tour contracts for 2019 including the top three finishers from the 2018 GCT finals who earn automatic qualification to the 2019 Grand Chess Tour.
The total prize fund of the 2019 tour will be at least USD 1.5 million, which is a 42% increase from the previous USD 1,050,000 prize pool of the 2018 season.
The Grand Chess Tour is in discussion with other event organisers who have expressed interest in joining the 2019 Grand Chess Tour. There is a possibility that further events will be added to the 2019 roster. This would expand the prize fund further and allow the number of full tour participants to be increased to 12. It would also increase the number of event level wildcards in the 2019 Grand Chess Tour.
Further announcements regarding player invitations, the addition of any further tournaments and the final format of the 2019 Grand Chess Tour are expected to be made by mid-January 2019.
About the Grand Chess Tour (http://grandchesstour.org)
The Grand Chess Tour is a circuit of international events, each demonstrating the highest level of organization for the world's best players. The Tour was created in partnership between the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (Sinquefield Cup) and Chess Promotions, Ltd. (London Chess Classic). The legendary Garry Kasparov, one of the world's greatest ambassadors for chess, inspired the Grand Chess Tour and helped solidify the partnership between the organizers.
About the URS™ (http://universalrating.com)
The Universal Rating System (URS™), is a revolutionary new sport’s rating system designed to assess the relative strength of participants across a wide variety of competitor vs competitor sports or games. The URS™ was developed as the result of a collaborative research project funded by the Grand Chess Tour, the Kasparov Chess Foundation and the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis. The system is the product of detailed research conducted over more than two years by some of the world’s leading experts in methods of rating chess players.
About the Gameplan Sports Pvt. Ltd. (http://gameplan.co.in/)
Set up in 1998, Gameplan Sports Pvt. Ltd. is one of India’s foremost corporate branding agencies, working primarily in the fields of sports and literature. The company presents innovative and cost-effective ideas that give sponsors maximum exposure. Key activities include marketing and management of international and domestic sponsorship rights in India; marketing and management of Indian and international cricket tournaments, player endorsements, syndicating content in print and electronic media, in-stadia advertising, 3-D signs, event management, event promotions, hospitality and memorabilia.
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