Well, a gap year is certainly not compulsory, there's every possibility he could just head straight into University. You probably know this, but your post gave the impression that you thought he'd be sure to take a gap year.Leonard Barden wrote:I don't know Kilpatrick's situation, but it seems to be quite possible that he is working on exams now but will be in his gap year and using it partly to improve his chess by the time of the tournament. That happens with quite a few leading English juniors.Matthew Turner wrote:Callum Kilpatrick chose not to compete at the trial. I imagine that he felt his schoolwork was more important. I respect him for that decision, but if he is unable to play a weekend, is he really going to be able to play a two week long event?
I do not know what happened with Peter William's invite, but somebody needs to take it up with the Junior Director. To be honest, information about the junior selection process has been on the ECF for a long time, so it is perhaps a little bit silly to wait until after the trial to raise the subject of Peter's 'non-invite'.
That said, the tournament will be held such that he misses about 2 weeks of University work. If he's playing for England, the University will not mind too much. The first year of University tends to be pretty labour-unintensive (particularly given it'll be within 4 weeks of the start of the year - there isn't too much they can have tought for a student to be assessed on in that time!). So it would be possible for him to play, having had a 12-week break (or so) in the summer to "prepare".
I would be interested to see/know if the missing people would have played if it had been held at a weekend over the Easter holidays. Part of the problem with organisation of junior events is that they're held at non-ideal (and sometimes, plain daft) times. E.g. the Megafinals are largely in May, often days before GCSE Maths, or something. While numbers over the age of 12 are limited anyway due to very few secondary schools running the UKCC, the timing of these things could be much better. (I e-mailed Mike Basman about this while I was still playing it, and was told words to the effect of "chess is more important to a rounded education". I don't think he quite understood the point.)