The persistence of the Covid-19 pandemic has put many senior events for 2021 in doubt although the increased availability of vaccines has raised some hopes.
The city of Magdeburg in the Sachsen-Anhalt region of Germany will host a series of recently-announced events during July, including a Senior Open.
The Bad Neuenahr tournament in late May is now the earliest Senior event that may yet go ahead and a long list of entrants can be seen online. Unfortunately postponement, or restriction to German residents only, seems likely to us.
Early in March, English Chess Federation announced that they will not hold British Championships over the board in the summer, and the congress in Torquay (originally scheduled for 2020) is postponed a second time to 2022. Instead they will hold online championships like last December/January which will presumably include 50+ and 65+ tournaments.
As our Seniors news page announces, the World Senior Team Championships will not be held until next year but it is still hoped that the FIDE Senior individual championships can go ahead in Italy. An announcement is expected by the first week in June.
The high rate of infections in the Czech Republic has caused the postponed Marienbad festival (at Marianske Lazne in April) to be definitely cancelled, as was also the annual festival in Bad Wörishofen (both including senior tournaments). These events will probably not be held again until, respectively, January and March 2022.
Nevertheless, the Amateur Chess Organisation plans to revive its events this year. Note that they are NOT rated by FIDE although they use FIDE (or national) ratings to determine which tournament entrants compete in. The "titles" they award are not recognised by anyone except themselves.
ACO's postponed 2020 "Senior World Championships" (for players 50+) will be held at the 5-star Fodele Beach Resort, Crete, from 11-20 May, alongside their "World Amateur" championships. Today (31 March) is the last date for early booking discounts.
ACO's 2021 tournaments will be played at the same venue from 1-10 October, which was also the venue for their 2019 senior festival.
GM Vlastimil Hort will be guest of honour at both festivals. ACO events are essentially a holiday but they are popular with regular visitors. See below for details.
Two small German senior tournaments that had been planned for March had to be postponed to November, although optimists in Germany and elsewhere are still planning some attractive tournaments for the second half of this year. The continued high level of infections and the confused slow roll-out of vaccines in Europe makes planning difficult for organisers.
See also our Seniors news page.
For tournaments run on FIDE Senior rules, you do not have to wait for your birthday; you are qualified from 1 January in the year in which you reach the qualifying age. The qualifying dates for the two FIDE age groups this year are 31 December 1955 (for 65+) and 31 December 1970 (for 50+). For next year's events the qualifying years become 1956 and 1971.
The German Senior tournaments calendar was redesigned and updated during 2020. We are in contact with Wolfgang Block who organises it. In our calendar we include only those tournaments which are described as Open, and not events restricted to German players.
We are still hoping that the midsummer festival at Bad Neuenahr, which includes a 75+ tournament, but we no longer expect to be able to play in it. Maybe next year.
If you know of further tournaments, or cancellations, please inform us and we shall include them.
An asterisk in the list below indicates new or recently changed information.
** CANCELLED: 20th Marienbad festival at Marianske Lazne, Czech Republic.
11-20 May: ACO plans to hold its postponed 2020 unofficial "Senior World Championships", for players aged 50 and over, alongside its "Amateur World Championships" in Crete. Download regulations in English (PDF). See also below for their 2021 events in October. The venue, the 5-star Fodele Beach Resort, is about 28km from the island's capital Iraklion and 25km west of Iraklion airport.
POSTPONED AGAIN: The Reykjavik Festival (to include the European Championship and a shorter Open event) cannot go ahead at the proposed 22 May-2 June dates. They now hope to be able to hold it in August or September. Whether there would be any Senior (50+) prizes is unknown.
26 May-3 June 2021: Chess Classics 2021 Bad Neuenahr (Klaus Gohde Memorial tournaments). Three 9-round FIDE-rated sections: 50+, 65+ and 75+! A half-point bye may be taken in one of the first seven rounds if requested. The rather high entry fee of 120 Euros includes refreshments (water, coffee, tea or juices) during the games. Details (PDF in German). This sounds like a high-class event. Bad Neuenahr is in a pleasant wine-growing region close to the Rhine at Remagen.
* 8-16 June 2021: 37th Open Berlin Senior Individual Championship, for men 60+ and women 55+. Limited (because of pandemic regulations) to the first 75 entries, after which a waiting list will be created. More details available via the German calendar.
12-20 June 2021: 32nd Bavarian Open Senior Championship at Bergen/Chiemgau. Nine rounds. For men and women born in 1961 or earlier. Details in German (PDF). The venue is on the rail line between Munich and Innsbruck.
19-27 June 2021: 28th Brandenburg Senior Open at the resort town Miedzyzdroje on the Baltic island of Wolin, Poland. Programme includes blitz and rapid events. German age rules (55 for women, 60 for men). Anyone interested can download a Word file in German from Herr Block's calendar.
2-10 July: 18th Rheinland/Pfalz Senior Open (9 rounds) at Altenkirchen/Westerwald. For men born 1961 or earlier and women born 1966 or earlier. Details in German (PDF). The venue is located approximately 40 km east of Bonn and 50 km north of Koblenz.
** 5-11 July: 29th Open Senior championship of Sachsen-Anhalt at Magdeburg (7 rounds). Prizes for 50+ and 65+ in one tournament. PDF regulations in German. Later in July, Magdeburg hosts the German Senior Championships, which were held there successfully last August.
* CANCELLED (was 25-31 July 2021): British 50+ and 65+ Championships in Torquay; online tournaments will be played instead. For future announcements, check the English Chess Federation championship website.
30 July-3 August 2021: 11th Canadian Seniors Championships at Halifax, Nova Scotia, as part of a larger chess festival. 6-Round Swiss in two sections 50+/65+. Canadian residents are eligible if age 50/65 by 31st December 2021. Foreign players U2000 are welcome but cannot claim first prize. Highest rated entries so far are GM Evgeny Bareev (50+) and IM Leon Piasetski in the 65+. (Thanks to Simon Rogers who found this on the Canadian chess federation website.)
30 September-8 October 2021: 15th Open Senior Championship of Schleswig-Holstein at Busum.
1-10 October: ACO unofficial "Senior World Championships" (50+) in Crete. Seven sections based on 200-Elo wide rating bands. PDF announcement of regulations in English. The organisers' website promises 200 Euro per person discounts for entries received by 31 March and free cancellation up to three days before the start. The venue is the same as for their events in May.
* 8-21 November 2021 (unconfirmed dates): Official FIDE Senior World Championships pencilled in for Assisi, Italy, which was to have been the 2020 venue. The organisers' website arcoworldchess.com has no information at present. An email informed us that FIDE have asked them to wait until the last week of May or first week of June to confirm details. The dates shown here are on the German calendar. Watch this space.
May 2022: FIDE Senior World Team Championships pencilled in for Acqui Terme, Italy, according to organisers Arcoworldchess. (Originally planned for August 2021, but they say FIDE asked them to wait until next year.)
PROBABLY POSTPONED AND/OR RELOCATED (original dates were 23 July-1 August 2021): This year's European Senior Team Championships was originally scheduled for Dresden, Germany. If the ECU calendar can be believed, the 2021 event will be played in Wroclaw, Poland but there are still no dates and the European Senior Individuals are still assigned to Pola d with no venue or dates. We shall probably have to wait several more weeks for any information but our view is that even the individual championship may not happen.
The team event is usually for teams of four representing nations or regions; 50+ and 65+. All players on a team must be registered with FIDE and from the same federation.
Note the age qualification rules for German-language Senior events vary. It is usually 60+ for men and 50+ or 55+ for women. Check the particular details for any event that interests you.