On the Eve of Greatness: Three California Chess Prodigies Competing in their First National Chess Championship

Tomorrow three of my favorite chess students will begin play at the 2010 National K-12 Chess Championship in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. As the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy, I have had the distinct pleasure of coaching many of the top ranking scholastic chess players in the United States and can comfortably state that the three players described below are among the finest young chess players I have ever coached.
   In 2009, then Chinese citizen Chenyi Zhao impressed her Country by placing very highly at a prestigious chess tournament in Beijing. Although only 5, it seemed Chenyi was destined to be placed in a state run chess school for the extremely gifted. Within a few short months, Chenyi Zhao had immigrated to the United States and found herself in Fremont, California attending chess classes run by the Torres Chess and Music Academy. Chenyi is now considered one of the top chess players for her age in California and a serious contender for a top place finish at the 2010 National Scholastic Chess Championship.
   Milind Maiti appeared in the Collins Elementary School Chess Team in September of 2010. Because the Collins Chess Team is run by the Torres Chess and Music Academy, it was no small accomplishment that Milind progressed to the “Advanced” class by week two. Milind posseses natural tactical abilities that are beyond anything one would expect from a Kindergartener. He is truly a chess prodiogy of the highest level and will be a contender in the 2010 National Scholastic k-12 chess championship.
   For months before I received the fateful email, I had been eyeing Ben Rood’s chess games with the opinion that Ben was destined to be a national chess champion. (Having worked with several national chess champions and one world chess champion, I tend to gauge talent very accurately.) Aproximately eight months after I first noticed Ben Rood, his mother emailed me inquiring about private chess lessons for Ben. It turned out that Ben was only willing to accept private chess lessons from Chris Torres. I immediately accepted and now train with Ben Rood weekly in Walnut Creek. Observing Ben Rood growth under my tutoring for the past few months is exceptionally rewarding and I feel blessed to be a part of his learning process. In fact, chess comes so easily for Ben Rood that it is my professional opinion that Magnus Carlsen should start preparing for him immediately!
   In conclusion, should any child be unfortunate enough to sit across from Chenyi Zhao, Milind Maiti or Ben Rood at the 2010 National K-12 Chess Championship…they should be verrrry afraid!

Don’t hesitate  to sign your child up for chess classes run by the Torres Chess and Music Academy. For more information be sure to visit www.ChessAndMusic.com

Published by chessmusings

Chris Torres is a nationally renowned scholastic chess coach working in the San Francisco Bay Area. His classes have attracted players of strengths ranging from rank beginners to world champions. A chess professional since 1998, Chris is widely recognized as one of the main driving forces behind the explosion in popularity and sudden rise in quality of scholastic chess in California. Chris Torres served as the President of the Torres Chess and Music Academy from 2005-2020 and currently is recognized as a correspondence chess master with the United States Chess Federation. Since 1998 Chris Torres has taught 6 individual national champions as well as led multiple school teams to win national championship titles. In addition, Chris Torres has directed and taught at 10 different schools which have been California State Champions at chess. In 2011 and 2012, several former and current students of Chris Torres have been selected to represent the United States at the World Youth Chess Championships. Mr. Torres’ hobbies include playing classical guitar and getting his students to appear on the national top 100 chess rating lists.

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