Brussels International Chess Festival 2009
By Fabrice Wantiez

This rapid (11 rounds of 25′ per game) tournament was played not far from the center of Brussels on 2-3 May 2009. 103 players were present with 6 IGMs (3 former winners), 5 IMs and 6 FMs. The prize funds were 3,200 eur with 600 eur for the winner (same amount as last year).

The top seed Ivan Sokolov won the tournament (for the 2nd time) with 9/11 alone by a full point margin (with all the others IGMs). Petar Popovic was the first IGM who lost 1/2 point during the 2nd round against Robert Schuermans (2150), and then a lost against IM Lazlo Hetey (2344) in the 4th. In the 5th round, Sokolov won a very difficult game against his best challenger, Pedrag Nikolic.

Then, he had 5/5! He drew against Barsov on the 6th but won again against Akesson on the 7th. The tournament was over and he can coast with 3 draws (Andersson, Popovic and Amigues who lost his very first game against Kristian Frederiksen 1780) and a win against Ruben Akhayan (2293) in the 9th. Akesson finished 2nd thanks to a win on the 6th against a very talented young Belgian player Tanguy Ringoir (2349) in a completely hopeless position and a win against Nikolic in the 9th.


2008 : Nikolic Predrag (2665)
2007 : Sokolov Ivan (2655)
2006 : Barsov Alexei (2532)
2005 : Akhayan Ruben (2268)
2004 : Mohandesi Shahin (2343)
2003 : Mohandesi Shahin (2325)

Final ranking:

Tit Nom Cote F/M DateNaiss Pts Perf B M Buch Cum
1 g Sokolov Ivan (2657N) M 22-02-1959 9.0/11 2684 54.0 82.5 59.5
2 g Akesson Ralf (2479N) M 08-02-1961 8.0/11 2565 53.5 82.0 55.0
3 g Nikolic Predrag (2623N) M 11-09-1960 8.0/11 2587 51.5 80.0 53.5
4 g Barsov Alexei (2505N) M 03-04-1966 8.0/11 2536 51.5 79.5 52.0
5 g Andersson Ulf (2571N) M 27-06-1951 8.0/11 2562 51.5 79.0 52.0
6 g Popovic Petar (2489N) M 14-02-1959 8.0/11 2498 50.0 77.0 49.5
7 f Ringoir Tanguy (2349N) M 29-06-1994 8.0/11 2420 47.5 73.5 50.0
8 m Hetey Lazlo (2344N) M 01-01-1975 8.0/11 2444 47.0 73.0 48.5
9 m Amigues Emmanuel (2352N) M 10-10-1980 8.0/11 2395 44.5 71.0 45.5
10 m Alienkin Aleksander (2402N) M 16-02-1963 7.5/11 2423 50.0 79.0 48.0

All the results and ranking are on :

On the evening of the first day, like all last years, there was a dinner in a restaurant. This time, the organization picked the restaurant “La Quincaillerie” which is just in the front of the tournament hall. The place where the tournament was played is very nice and always with a lot of people. There are a lot of very good restaurants; is a very well known restaurant.


As one of the first to set up in the Chatelain neighborhood that has now become so trendy, La Quincaillerie stands out among the innumerable fashion boutiques and purveyors of upmarket knick-knacks. It’s the Wednesday market has become the place to be as soon as the sun begins to shine on the capital.

Simply unavoidable!

As guests from the restaurant, we can find great people like David Bowie, Alain Delon, Lara Fabian (singer), Jean-Jacques Goldman (singer), Jean-Michel Jarre, John Malkovich, Jean Marais, Kylie Minogue, Nirvana,Philippe and Astrid de Belgique, Eros Ramazotti, Oliver Stone, Oliver Strelli, Bruce Willis and many others !!

Official site:

More pictures, 2 gallery and games, update on my page:

Sponsors: Garage Peugeot-Declercq, La Maison Blanche (, La Maison Blanche aparthotels are an ideal alternative to traditional hotel accommodation for visits from one night to over a month)

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