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MACA Chess Horizons Magazine Article
 Bedford Rating Round Robin
 Bob Messenger
  November 2011

In October 2011 Alex Relyea and Ken Ballou, assisted by Alex’s wife Nita Patel, ran a tournament which is unusual in New England but which is becoming popular in other parts of the country: a round robin, all-play-all, tournament designed to give FIDE (World Chess Federation) ratings to its unrated participants. It’s diffi cult for an unrated player to gain a rating in Swiss System tournaments like the Massachusetts Open because of the requirement of playing at least three rated players in the same tournament.In a ten player round robin with at least four rated players, all the unrated players in the tournament gain ratings as long as there are no forfeits or withdrawals and every unrated player scores at least one point. This is a good way to obtain a FIDE rating but it’s important for the organizer to invite the right mix of players because a single player can spoil the tournament for everyone.

The players at the tournament in Bedford N.H. were divided into two more or less equal sections, A and B, each with ten players, which meant that the tournament lasted nine rounds. All players had to be unrated or have FIDE ratings under 2200 because under FIDE rules this meant that three games could be played each day. There were players from all six New England states, plus Frank Berry from Oklahoma and Agastya Kalra from Canada.
Section A ended in a threeway tie between David Carter of Vermont, Sherif Khater of New Hampshire, and Anatoly Levin of Massachusetts, who each scored 6 points. Yoshesh Raghunathan of Connecticut was the clear winner of Section B with 6½ points, followed by James Dickson and David Harris, who are both from Rhode Island and scored 6. All the unrated players got their FIDE ratings. I played in the event and had a respectable but unambitious result: seven draws and two losses.
David Harris annotated two of his games, which are on page 40.