At the London Classic I got chatting to Daniel Parmet who kindly mentioned that he might be able to set up some events if I played in the Chicago Open again. I decided to give it a go as it was a good excuse to follow up with a Florida visit. He put me in touch with Sevan Muradian at The North American Chess Association where I gave a couple of lectures, for which I was a bit more prepared this time, and a simul. NACA had not long before hosted the FIDE president, and when we drove back into the centre of Chicago that evening, we found the city gridlocked due to the NATO Summit with security at our hotel being especially tough as another President, Barack Obama by name was a fellow guest, this made things interesting!

I also gave a clock simul at Daniel’s local club, I haven’t played a serious event like this before so was interested to get the chance to play a 10 board event against solid opposition. I didn’t do a great job at concealing my unfamiliarity when after making a move on the first couple of boards I failed to press my clock! After this I got into the swing of things a bit, and ended up ahead on time in most games and managed a 10-0 sweep much to my surprise.
[pgn initialply=31 height=350]
[Event "DGCC Clock Simul G90+5inc"]
[Site "?"]
[Date "2012.05.23"]
[Round "?"]
[White "Adams, Michael"]
[Black "Klug, Steffen"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "D08"]
[WhiteElo "2738"]
[BlackElo "2131"]
[Annotator "Adams,Michael"]
[PlyCount "55"]
[EventDate "2012.??.??"]

1. d4 d5 2. c4 e5 {Not a bad choice in a simul leading to complex positions.}
3. dxe5 d4 4. Nf3 Nc6 5. a3 Bg4 6. h3 {I played this hoping to avoid theory
which I was totally unfamiliar with. The database reveals that although it is
rarely essayed both Lasker and Marshall have given it an outing.} Bxf3 7. exf3
Nxe5 8. f4 {Black’s knight doesn’t have a comfortable retreat square.} Ng6 9.
Bd3 Nf6 $6 ({It was better to develop with tempo} 9… Bd6 $1 10. g3 Nf6 11.
O-O O-O) 10. O-O Be7 11. Re1 Nd7 ({There is not much choice as} 11… O-O 12.
f5 Nh8 {leaves the knight cornered.}) 12. g3 $6 ({Not a bad move preparing to
develop but I should have stranded the king in the middle with} 12. Qe2 $1 Nc5
{didn’t seem that clear but of course} 13. f5 {is huge for White there so this
was much stonger.}) 12… O-O 13. Nd2 Nc5 $6 (13… c5 {looks ugly but at
least stabilises the position.}) 14. Bf1 a5 ({This secures one knight, and}
14… Bf6 15. b4 Nd7 16. Ne4 {doesn’t look tempting.}) 15. f5 {However now his
colleague is exiled.} Nh8 16. Nb3 $1 {Trading Black’s best piece and gaining
time.} Nxb3 17. Qxb3 b6 ({Maybe} 17… Rb8 18. Bg2 c6 {should have been tried.
Now the light squared bishop dominates the board.}) 18. Bg2 Ra7 19. Bd2 Re8 (
19… c5 20. Bd5 {is also grim, but this doesn’t help.}) 20. Qb5 Kf8 (20… Rf8
{was relatively best}) 21. Bc6 f6 22. Re6 Nf7 23. Bf4 $1 ({A good move
preventing any activity, there are some fighting chances after} 23. Bxe8 Qxe8
24. Qxe8+ Kxe8 25. Rae1 c5 (25… Ne5 26. Rxe7+ Kxe7 27. f4) 26. Bf4 Rb7) 23…
a4 24. Bxe8 ({I thought I should avoid} 24. Rae1 Ra5 25. Bxe8 Rxb5 26. Bxb5 {
but in fact it wins even easier.}) 24… Qxe8 25. Qxe8+ Kxe8 26. Rae1 c5 27.
Rxb6 Kd7 $2 28. Bb8 $1 1-0 [/pgn]

Michael Adams & John FedorowiczDaniel has written a comprehensive report on the event which is well worth a look. Many thanks to Daniel Parmet for all his efforts.

Flushed with success from this and having got over jetlag I should have been in good shape at the Chicago Open but played horribly from start to finish. I’ve had a pretty good run in opens ELO and prize wise recently, but this wasn’t a happy outing. The high point of the event was submerging it with large beers afterwards with John Fedorowicz whom I hadn’t seen for way too long.