Carlsen, So & Nakamura back for Airthings Masters

World chess champion Magnus Carlsen will take revenge on Wesley Chors tour director Wesley when the tour’s first major begins on December 26th. The 12-player tournament runs through January 3rd and has a prize fund of $ 200,000. The winner will receive $ 60,000 and a guaranteed place in the grand finale next September. Airthings, maker of the world’s leading radon and indoor air quality monitors, is partnering with the tour and will measure the air quality in players’ homes during the game.

All-Star Lineup for the Airthings Masters

We are excited to announce the field for the second event on the US $ 1.5 million Champions Chess Tour, the Airthings Masters, which will feature 8 of the 11 best players in the world according to the classic rating list. The average rating is 2761 and the average age is 30.6 years.

The line-up includes the eight players who qualified as Top 8 of the Champions Chess Tour after the first event, the Skilling Open, which Wesley So won after an exciting final victory over Magnus Carlsen.

These players will be joined by the Spanish master David Anton, who was re-elected to the Airthings Masters despite his placement outside the qualification places, and the three-time Russian Blitz world champion Alexander Grischuk, who held the second public vote among the chess 24 premium members won.

There are also two jokers, the Russian Daniil Dubov, who was the only player besides Magnus to win an event on the Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour, and the Indian Pentala Harikrishna, who is number 1 in the world rankings. 10.

Double the prize fund

The prize fund for the first major of the Champions Chess Tour is $ 200,000, double that for regular events like the Skilling Open. The grand prize rises to $ 60,000. One difference this time is that there will also be a match for 3rd place that runs parallel to the final.

The winner is guaranteed a place in the final of the Champions Chess Tour next September, while the 8 best players in the overall ranking after the Airthings Masters will automatically be invited to the next regular event with 16 players on the tour in February 2021.

Bridging Christmas and New Years

The Airthings Masters are a Christmas and New Year celebration for chess fans as they take place from December 26th to January 3rd without a day of rest. There is again a three-day preliminary round in which the players play against each other once before the top 8 players advance to the knockout.

The game of chess should end at midnight on New Year’s Eve wherever the players are, as the start time for this event is 3:00 p.m. CET (9:00 a.m. ET), three hours earlier than the Skilling Open.

Breathe Better, Play Better?

Airthings will be the title partner of the Airthings Masters and the official air quality partner for the entire first season of the tour. Airthings monitors and broadcasts the air quality in players’ homes to raise awareness of the importance of good indoor air and its effects on our cognitive skills, decision-making and health.

World chess champion Magnus Carlsen commented:

Chess players expect perfect conditions in tournaments. Usually, the air quality is taken care of by those who organize the tournaments and the conditions are the same for everyone. But since we play separately, we have to take responsibility for it ourselves.

By monitoring the air quality in the room, we can ensure that the air we breathe is good. I think it will be important to keep it at a high level throughout the tournament.

Andreas Thome, CEO of the Play Magnus Group, said:

For the players, the Champions Chess Tour requires decisions with high stakes, often under time pressure. It will be fascinating to see the world’s best achievements at the Airthings Masters, while also seeing in real time how the conditions differ in each of their homes using Airthings technology.

Oyvind Birkenes, CEO of Airthings, emphasized the importance of air quality:

For chess, esports, and players, focus is key, and when players sit in a room for hours, the air they breathe plays an important role in their performance, decisions, and sanity. By monitoring the air quality in the room, chess players can ensure that the air they breathe is as healthy as possible and that they can keep track of things during a tournament.

The Airthings Masters logo

All logos for the Champions Chess Tour are graphic representations of certain chess games. The Skilling Open logo was produced by 13-year-old Bobby Fischer’s Game of the Century, while the Airthings Masters logo was chosen by vote.

The winner was the brilliant attack game that gave Wesley So the victory over Hikaru Nakamura in the semifinals of the Skilling Open.

The best live chess coverage

The Airthings Masters will be broadcast live in languages ​​such as English, Spanish, German, French, Russian, Turkish, Italian and Portuguese. NRK TV shows the action in Norway, while Eurosport streams are live in over 60 markets around the world. Here on chess24 there are again several streams in English that are suitable for beginners and experienced chess fans. You don’t wanna miss it!

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