Attention Congress Players

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MartinCarpenter
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by MartinCarpenter » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:15 pm

I have to say that I do think opens in weekend events do work rather better with at least one very strong (~titled) player in them. That may well take prize money to achieve.

Otherwise I wouldn't mind. I can't see reducing entry fees getting many more people mind - entry fees are a relatively small fraction of the overall cost of playing in a weekend congress.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:20 pm

MartinCarpenter wrote:I have to say that I do think opens in weekend events do work rather better with at least one very strong (~titled) player in them. That may well take prize money to achieve.
Actually, fees can work better than prize money in this regard, although it's not clear-cut. (Certainly Bournemouth's £1000 first prize last year was a key factor in their getting four GMs, but so are the fees e2e4 pay to GMs.)

Barry Sandercock
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Barry Sandercock » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:58 pm

I think most players would prefer to have something to play for. If the current prizes were halved, they would still be quite happy.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Jonathan Bryant » Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:13 pm

barry sandercock wrote:I think most players would prefer to have something to play for. If the current prizes were halved, they would still be quite happy.
I think this is closest to my view. A nominal prize at least, but lower entry fees (as opposed to no prize money and even lower entry fees).

This is on the assumption that the strength of the tournament isn't affected. I was assuming that GMs would continue to be attracted to these events by the payment of conditions. No GMs would probably mean fewer stronger amateurs which, in turn, would make the event less attractive to mean.

That said, I also agree with the point made earlier about the importance of general conditions for an event. I'd rather pay a bit more for a decent venue than play in a cold drafty room. In this regard, however, I would assume that e2e4 would continue their practice of being the best there is.

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:40 pm

A better venue and a higher prize fund does seem to produce a bigger turnout. There's no getting away from that very simple fact.
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Andrew Camp
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Andrew Camp » Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:07 pm

There's nothing quite like having a fantastic, clean, quiet venue where you can stay and play. This is the very reason we play more e2e4s now than other congresses. Plus, the kid can play in FIDE rated tournaments.

I personally much prefer playing in the hotels e2e4 use than in village halls, schools and leisure centres. May sound daft but I will never be good enough to play 4NCL but playing in e2e4 venues actually makes me feel a little more like a chess player.
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Robert Stokes
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Robert Stokes » Tue Jan 29, 2013 10:25 pm

I would be happy with option 1, i.e. no prizes and low entry fee.

I would be happy with what we have now, i.e. prizes (equal for all sections) and higher entry fee.
(Although grading prizes which don't even cover the entry fee or petrol are a waste of time and should be omitted.)

What I would not want is a mixture of the two.

Robert

Richard Bates
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Richard Bates » Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:03 am

Robert Stokes wrote:I would be happy with option 1, i.e. no prizes and low entry fee.

I would be happy with what we have now, i.e. prizes (equal for all sections) and higher entry fee.
(Although grading prizes which don't even cover the entry fee or petrol are a waste of time and should be omitted.)

What I would not want is a mixture of the two.

Robert
Do you genuinely mean this - or do you rather mean to imply that you wouldn't favour playing in a "low entry fee, no prize" event, if a proportion of the entry fee was (still) contributing towards the prizes in another section?

Because if each section was genuinely stand alone, (if one excludes the extent to which the multiple sections reduce average cost of overheads across each) then i don't see why what happens in one section should have any bearing on the other?

It would be (vaguely) interesting to know if Sean is generally thinking in terms of trying an alternative model across all sections, or just selected individual ones - the Minor section isn't rated so he would be asking players to be purely playing for the love of the game; the Major (usually) is, so players have the love of the game, and FIDE rated chess (although that in itself comes with a higher cost); and the Open already offers a range of entry fees depending on title status of the players (with the overall effect of the players with the best chances of winning prizes having the lowest costs, especially when factoring in conditions he offers on top). Setting aside other reasons why i'm not currently particularly likely to play in one of these tournaments, but obviously as a potential prize winner who gets free entry, reducing the entry fees and prizes is not something which is going to make it personally more attractive. Which in itself is probably going to have a knock-on effect for the weaker Open players who genuinely play with no expectation of winning prizes (except perhaps the odd rating prize) but do value the opportunity to play titled players.

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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Sean Hewitt » Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:27 am

Richard Bates wrote: It would be (vaguely) interesting to know if Sean is generally thinking in terms of trying an alternative model across all sections, or just selected individual ones
When we started, people said that dissuading people from entering on the day would be stupid. But it worked.

When we did all play alls without prize money people said that would be stupid. But it worked.

At the moment I'm thinking about how we can make events more attractive and considering all sorts of options. Whatever we do next, I am sure it will simply be part of a suite of different types of event.

The important thing to remember is that, if you stand still, you're going backwards. :lol:

Eric Gardiner
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Eric Gardiner » Wed Jan 30, 2013 8:21 am

Paul Dargan wrote:Congress with no prize money fine by me - in theory.

Of course if the overall result is that the strength goes down event after event as those capable of winning increasingly see no point in playing to 'beat-up'/give away rating points to weaker opposition then I might change my mind.

Paul
Same here but that would be my worry too. It might work OK for grade limited sections but not Opens. (The second option where some players pay more in order to be eligible for prizes feels too much like going to the casino!)
Richard Bates wrote: Setting aside other reasons why i'm not currently particularly likely to play in one of these tournaments, but obviously as a potential prize winner who gets free entry, reducing the entry fees and prizes is not something which is going to make it personally more attractive. Which in itself is probably going to have a knock-on effect for the weaker Open players who genuinely play with no expectation of winning prizes (except perhaps the odd rating prize) but do value the opportunity to play titled players.
Yes, I concur. In Yorkshire it seems that players of my standard can and do win occasional prizes in Opens (e.g. check out the result of the York Open on the Yorkshire grading site) but I'd much prefer the opportunity to play stronger players than to have a good chance of winning a prize. Of course my opinion is rather academic unless Sean organises an e2e4 event closer to me ... which might be unlikely for chess-political reasons in the near future 8)

Robert Stokes
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Robert Stokes » Wed Jan 30, 2013 9:39 am

What I meant was that I would not want to play in a section (Minor in my case) where some of my opponents might have paid more for a possible prize and others haven't.

I hadn't originally thought about some sections subsidising others. I don't mind this providing prizes for all sections are the same. However, I wouldn't want to pay a higher entry fee if some of it were used to give bigger prizes for the Open section.

Robert

Andrew Zigmond
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Andrew Zigmond » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:16 am

Eric Gardiner wrote: Yes, I concur. In Yorkshire it seems that players of my standard can and do win occasional prizes in Opens (e.g. check out the result of the York Open on the Yorkshire grading site) but I'd much prefer the opportunity to play stronger players than to have a good chance of winning a prize. Of course my opinion is rather academic unless Sean organises an e2e4 event closer to me ... which might be unlikely for chess-political reasons in the near future 8)
Going slightly off topic but I agree it would be great if Sean could bring an E2-E4 event to Yorkshire - there are plenty of country hotels in the wonderful Yorkshire countryside that I'm sure would be happy to host it. The same rules would presumably apply irrespective of location - entrants in the Open and Major would have to be Gold members and entrants in the Minor would need Silver or else pay the £6 extra. Most congress players in Yorkshire pay their ECF fees and are fully reconciled with the Federation - it's league players who are currently a bit hostile to the ECF.
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Roger de Coverly
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Roger de Coverly » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:39 am

Sean Hewitt wrote: When we started, people said that dissuading people from entering on the day would be stupid. But it worked.
You might lose a handful of entries that way, not that it matters if events are at capacity. But it's a consequence of one of e2e4's other policies. If e2e4 only accepted postal entries in the traditional model, anyone only deciding to enter or able to decide on the week of the event would have little option but to enter by turning up in person. With online entries, you can leave the decision to the last minute and still be part of the first round pairings.

The other question is whether e2e4 will be continuing to offer events in their present form if FIDE don't back down on their new licensing and registration regulations.

Sean Hewitt
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Sean Hewitt » Wed Jan 30, 2013 10:52 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:The other question is whether e2e4 will be continuing to offer events in their present form if FIDE don't back down on their new licensing and registration regulations.
I'm not going to rush into any decision. Once I'm sure I know what FIDE are going do in this regard then I'll make a decision how e2e4 will react.

Richard Bates
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Re: Attention Congress Players

Post by Richard Bates » Wed Jan 30, 2013 11:32 pm

Sean Hewitt wrote:
Roger de Coverly wrote:The other question is whether e2e4 will be continuing to offer events in their present form if FIDE don't back down on their new licensing and registration regulations.
I'm not going to rush into any decision. Once I'm sure I know what FIDE are going do in this regard then I'll make a decision how e2e4 will react.
My suspicion is that the basic e2e4 model would be compromised by any move which significantly discentivised FIDE rating tournaments. I don't think there is much doubt that currently any competition offering "FIDE rated chess" immediately gives itself a measure of prestige. The strength of the e2e4 model is that the "quality" venue, "charging a bit extra" model all perfectly compliments the 'prestige' of FIDE rated chess. (as it happens this is a big negative for me personally - i think the fast time controls are too extreme for what i want to put my rating on the line for, although i presume i am in a fairly signficant,or anyway irrelevant, minority on this).

Interestingly there are some people, (or maybe more accurately one fairly influential person?) who seem to believe that FIDE rating virtually all chess is some sort of Holy Grail. So this starts with extending the list down to 1200, or even lower, so that anyone with basic competence in the game can aspire to a rating, and continues with the implication that FIDE can be 'bribed' with the promise of huge expansions of numbers to relax their rules on time controls (even further) and playing conditions so that League chess can be rated. But is this really true? If all chess is FIDE rated, then what is the difference with all chess being ECF graded? There is no real difference in reality - both systems have their flaws, which both organisations seem determined to magnify - but at their core they are ranking systems which broadly do their job. But FIDE rating has the prestige because people can play FIDE rated chess and convince themselves that it is something different from the run of the mill evening game in a draughty hall with a pint of beer for company. Any move towards FIDE rating everything and that prestige disappears overnight.

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