The French System

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John Moore
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Re: The French System

Post by John Moore » Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:58 pm

JustinHorton wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 5:33 pm
I cannot possibly get over to you Nick, just how much your buffoonish ignorance is neither required nor appreciated right now, nor how little it contributes to our knowledge or understanding on this thread or any other.
A little tough, perhaps, Justin. Although I rather tend to agree.

Alex Holowczak
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Re: The French System

Post by Alex Holowczak » Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:08 pm

I've actually spoken to the same people who John has.

The answer is nothing to do with having a plan. The answer is having a culture that local government authorities donate significant amounts of money to different sporting events, including chess. This is even common in Western Europe, particularly in France, Germany and Spain. The tale goes that one tournament organiser didn't worry when the city government stopped giving him the money, because one of the layers of government above that probably would.

The only sports in which the UK does put money in directly are Olympic sports, where the lottery provides the funding for large numbers of sports, particularly in the build up to and immediate aftermath of the 2012 Olympic Games. As a result, we punch significantly above our weight in the Olympic medal table; particularly compared with 1996 in Atlanta, which was pretty much our Olympic nadir.

As a result, chess in the UK cannot hope to compete even with France at chess, although they're no match for us at cycling and swimming.

Richard Bates
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Re: The French System

Post by Richard Bates » Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:14 pm

Didn't the "French Chess explosion" in the early 2000s largely come about because one of the richest women in the World decided to bankroll it? They were never much cop before then, however much the state pumped into it.

Graham Borrowdale
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Re: The French System

Post by Graham Borrowdale » Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:45 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:08 pm
...
As a result, chess in the UK cannot hope to compete even with France at chess, although they're no match for us at cycling and swimming.
So how did the 'English chess explosion' of the 1970s come about - was it entirely the Fischer effect and Leonard Barden's junior training?

David Sedgwick
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Re: The French System

Post by David Sedgwick » Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:54 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:08 pm
The only sports in which the UK does put money in directly are Olympic sports, where the lottery provides the funding for large numbers of sports, particularly in the build up to and immediate aftermath of the 2012 Olympic Games. As a result, we punch significantly above our weight in the Olympic medal table; particularly compared with 1996 in Atlanta, which was pretty much our Olympic nadir.
That is not entirely true. Sport England, responsible for grass roots funding, support more sports than the Olympic ones. However, during the period when I represented the ECF on the Sport & Recreation Alliance (2007 - 2013), I remember a representative of Sport England making it clear that there was no prospect of their adding any additional sports to their funded list. To the best of my knowledge that situation has not changed.

Alex Holowczak wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:08 pm
The answer is having a culture that local government authorities donate significant amounts of money to different sporting events, including chess. This is even common in Western Europe, particularly in France, Germany and Spain. The tale goes that one tournament organiser didn't worry when the city government stopped giving him the money, because one of the layers of government above that probably would.
There is one British territory in Europe where the funding model is more akin to that of the countries you mention than to that of the UK.

I an currently at the 18th Gibraltar International Chess Festival. Two magnificent commercial sponsors, Gibtelecom and Tradewise, each supported the Festival for eight years. Since the latter gave up two years ago, the only noticeable impact has been the absence of their logo. The Festival is now backed by the City of Gibraltar, in various guises.

David Sedgwick
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Re: The French System

Post by David Sedgwick » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:00 pm

Graham Borrowdale wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:45 pm
Alex Holowczak wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:08 pm
...
As a result, chess in the UK cannot hope to compete even with France at chess, although they're no match for us at cycling and swimming.
So how did the 'English chess explosion' of the 1970s come about - was it entirely the Fischer effect and Leonard Barden's junior training?
To some extent chess talents are born, not made. It was fortuitous that at that very time England had a crop of junior players capable of taking advantage of the opportunity. Hence we went from having no grandmasters to having over thirty in a surprisingly short period of time.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: The French System

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:15 pm

"So how did the 'English chess explosion' of the 1970s come about - was it entirely the Fischer effect and Leonard Barden's junior training?"

As David said, and Bob Wade was coaching too. Of course there's a lot more coaching now...

Tim Harding
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Re: The French System

Post by Tim Harding » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:29 pm

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:15 pm
"So how did the 'English chess explosion' of the 1970s come about - was it entirely the Fischer effect and Leonard Barden's junior training?"

As David said, and Bob Wade was coaching too. Of course there's a lot more coaching now...
Circa 1973-1974 Leonard Barden's regular training Saturdays at the Mary Ward Centre (involving GM Bent Larsen for example) were, I think, largely financed by Jim Slater who unfortunately became what he himself styled as a "minus millionaire." But by then the ball was rolling. Leonard may be able to give more specific information.
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Leonard Barden
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Re: The French System

Post by Leonard Barden » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:32 pm

We had private backers-first Jim Slater, then Lloyds Bank. then Duncan Lawrie, Grieveson Grant and Phillips & Drew, plus several others, who funded critical events geared to the players we had at the appropriate stage of their development.

Thus we began with Slater financing Bob Wade coaching our then five world class talents Miles, Nunn, Stean, Speelman and Mestel, and continued right up to the level of elite GM tournaments. Some of it was done outside the BCF which made it possible to organise key events at little notice.

One crucial difference now is that even if money somehow became available, we have had no world class talents with 2650+ potential since Howell and Jones more than 20 years ago, and for a variety of reasons there are no such juniors in sight now.

Nick Grey
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Re: The French System

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:40 pm

i'm not sure which Nick Justin is referring to.
Bob Wade was coaching amongst others a Kingston plarer who is younger than me.
i think itwas Fischer, all those coaching juniors, and all those secondary schools organising chess.

Nick Grey
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Re: The French System

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:45 pm

We were No. 1 in the education system fifty years ago. We are about No. 50 now.

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JustinHorton
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Re: The French System

Post by JustinHorton » Sun Jan 26, 2020 9:26 pm

Nick Grey wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 8:45 pm
We were No. 1 in the education system fifty years ago. We are about No. 50 now.
What's your source for this
"Do you play chess?"
"Yes, but I prefer a game with a better chance of cheating."

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Nick Grey
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Re: The French System

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Jan 26, 2020 9:40 pm

Which Nick is JustinHorton wrote: ↑
Sun Jan 26, 2020 5:33 pm
I cannot possibly get over to you Nick, just how much your buffoonish ignorance is neither required nor appreciated right now, nor how little it contributes to our knowledge or understanding on this thread or any other.
A little tough, perhaps, Justin. Although I rather tend to agree.

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Joey Stewart
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Re: The French System

Post by Joey Stewart » Mon Jan 27, 2020 3:20 am

There was talk earlier of banning the French defence, but I have to disagree with that - ban any opening featuring early c3 for white and c6 for black first and foremost.

The French is not so bad really, if you don't want to deal with black reciting forced theory in his pet system then just play the exchange variation and annoy them on move 2. Fighting fire with fire! If I ever write a book on the French exchange I think that is what I would call it
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

John Moore
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Re: The French System

Post by John Moore » Mon Jan 27, 2020 9:47 am

John Moore wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 6:58 pm
JustinHorton wrote:
Sun Jan 26, 2020 5:33 pm
I cannot possibly get over to you Nick, just how much your buffoonish ignorance is neither required nor appreciated right now, nor how little it contributes to our knowledge or understanding on this thread or any other.
A little tough, perhaps, Justin. Although I rather tend to agree.
On reflection, I think that Justin's post is rather too tough and I no longer agree.

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