American Go E-Journal

2022 Chicago Rapid Championship breaks previous attendance record

Monday November 14, 2022

Top left: tournament winners; Top right: view of the playing room; bottom right: Youth players; bottom left: Open section. photos by Mark Rubenstein and Simon Guo

Last weekend’s Chicago Rapid Championship set a new record for attendance with 92 players and 10 unrated first-time youths. “We went international this time! Dohyup Kim, an EGF 7d, flew from Korea to compete with the best players in the Midwest,” said organizer Albert Yen 8d. “The field was stacked with 16 players 5 dan or stronger, including our newest American pro Alex Qi 1p. And with five rounds in one day… Well, that’s why we called it the Rapid!”

“People in the Main Division were really motivated to play lots of games!” said Main Division TD Mark Rubenstein. “The first place winners in three bands played nine games each. It’s tough to go 5-0 and still only get second place, which happened twice.”

“My favorite fact about the 2022 Chicago Rapid Championship is that our players span multiple generations and communities,” said Yen, “There is a 70-year age gap between our oldest (Guangmin Xu, age 75) and youngest (Winston Yan, age 5) players. The best part was, they were also in the same division! This is the beauty of go on full display, where people of all ages can compete as equals.”   

“Thanks to Eva-Dee’s amazing efforts, Boards 1 and 2 were streamed live on Twitch all five rounds. Our gratitude goes out to Ragnarr Marksen, Aldric Giacomoni, Nate Morse, and Forest Song for being our remote recorders,” said Open TD Cheuk To Tsui.

“Big thanks also to Devin Fraze for his awesome tournament app,” said Rubenstein. “This was the smoothest check-in we’ve ever had, especially considering that we had more players than ever before. Players were able to check themselves in with just a couple clicks on an iPad, freeing up me and co-TD’s to handle special situations. We must also thank Sungsoo Kim, who provided music performance during our opening ceremony, Ginger Persolus, who designed our website logo, and Jamie Tang, who helped tremendously with check-in and sorting out meal plans. Lastly, a special shout-out to Ashley Qi, who volunteered to help with check-in, then continued to give us a full day of outstanding and dedicated help with translation, pairings, and results. Our tournament was made possible by the work that volunteers put in.”

“We had the biggest selection of prizes ever,” said Yen. “We want to thank all our sponsors and prize contributors;, Yellow Mountain Imports, OGS, American Yunguseng Dojang, Alex Qi, Shawn Ray, Jeremiah Donley, and Moon Ki Cho. We had a prize set aside for the first-ever 100th attendee at a tournament… it will just have to wait until the 2023 Chicago Open in May!”

First place winners are shown here. The complete results are viewable on the AGA Player Ratings Database.

Open; Albert Yen 8d (5-0)
Dan: Mike Neigebauer 1k (4-1)
High Kyu: John Kirschenheiter 4k (7-2)
Mid Kyu: Henry Hsueh 9k (5-1)
Low Kyu: Jeffrey Jiao 11k (9-0)
Novice: Dino Wang 15k (9-0)
Youth: Belle Chao 
Most Games Played (9): John Kirschenheiter 4k, Dino Wang 15k, Jeffrey Jiao 11k, Jason Cheng 15k