Georg is a Grandmaster from Germany and his biggest successes include winning the European Team Championships with Germany in 2011 and finishing 2nd at the Dortmund Super-GM roundrobin in 2014. At the tournament in Dortmund, Georg also got his biggest win in an individual game, beating Vladimir Kramnik with the black pieces. Nowadays, Georg is mostly known for his success in online chess, thus in fast time controls. Georg received a Bachelor's degree from Webster University and is about to finish a Master's degree in economics at the Stockholm School of Economics in Sweden.
Aleksandr Shimanov became an International Master in 2007. Two years later, he received his grandmaster title when he was just 17 years old. In 2013, he tied for 1st-3rd at the Nakhchivan Open with Gadir Guseinov and Igor Kurnosov. GM Shimanov typically favors the Queen’s Pawn Game and Salv openings for white, and Caro-Kann and King’s Indian openings for black.
Daniel Naroditsky is a 21-year-old Grandmaster born and living in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. He is currently a rising junior at Stanford University. His first major achievement was the Gold Medal at the World Youth under-12 Chess Championship in 2007. He attained the IM title in 2011 and the GM title in 2013. Among his tournament highlights are 4th-5th place at the 2014 U.S. Championship, and 2nd place at the Porticcio Open in Corsica in 2016.
Vladislav was the Belarusian Junior Chess Championship winner in the U20 age group on three different occasions. He has also represented Belarus in the European Youth Chess Championship, in which he was silver in 2008 and bronze in 2010, and the World Youth Chess Championship. Vladislav has participated in the finals of the Belarusian Chess Championship, receiving silver in 2013 and bronze in 2012. He has also represented Belarus at the Chess Olympiads in 2012, 2014, and 2016, as well.
Dariusz Świercz began learning the game of chess at the age of three. By the time he was 11 years old, he had already become a FIDE Master. He rapidly succeeded in obtaining his International Master title in 2008 by the age of 13, and then went on to became one of the youngest grandmasters in history and the youngest Polish grandmaster of all time when he was only 14 years old in 2009. Świercz won the 2011 World Junior Chess Championship at the age of 17 and is currently the only Polish male chess player to accomplish this title. The following year he also won the Under-18 World Championship. He favors the Sicilian opening for both white and black pieces, as well as the Ruy Lopez for white.
The Ukrainian born American Grandmaster earned his title at the age of 15. “My biggest success so far was the advancement to the 4th round (1/8 of the final) at the World Cup 2011 in Russia. I won or shared 1st place in numerous US and European tournaments, the most memorable being Cappelle la Grande in France, 2010 (650+ players, over 80 GMs) and US Masters 2015 in Greensboro,NC.” The young GM has been mostly focused on pursuing academic degrees in the past 4 years, but now has the time to devote to “rediscovering a passion for working on and playing chess again.” In May of 2015 Zherebukh switched his affiliation from the Ukrainian Chess Federation to the U.S. Federation, which made him eligible to be the unpredictable wildcard in the 2017 U.S. Championship.
Ju Wenjun has many chess highlights including winning 2017 Gibraltar Open Best Female. She also received the 2016 Baku Olympiad Women Gold. Ju Wenjun accomplishments also include being the winner of 15-16 FIDE Women Grand Prix, 2009 and 2011 World Women Team champion, and 2010 and 2014 Chinese Individual Women Champion.
Ruifeng began playing chess when he was 5 years old. He won the Arkansas State Championship in 2011 at the age of 8, and later that same year placed second in the World Youth Chess Championships U-10 section. In 2012, after this early success, he was invited to participate in the Young Stars program, a chess training program coached by Garry Kasparov. Soon after, Ruifeng went on to earn the NM title. He received his IM title in 2015, and recently gained his Grandmaster title earlier this year. 2016 was one of the best years in his chess career. In it, he won the 2016 North American Junior Championship, National Open, and Philadelphia Open, also tied for first at 26th Annual North American Open. In early 2017, Ruifeng participated in both the Winter and Spring Classics respectively. This will be his third time taking part in a Saint Louis Quarterly tournament.
Awonder Liang is one of the most impressive chess prodigies in recent history. He holds a number of records including youngest ever to defeat an International Master, youngest to defeat a Grandmaster, youngest American to achieve a master rating, and youngest American to achieve the International Master rating. Other achievements include winning the U8 Open world title (2011), U10 Open world title (2013), tying for first at the 2011 U-8 World Youth Chess Championship, achieving a GM Norm at the 2016 Continental Championships, and placing second in the 2016 U.S. Junior Closed Championship. Awonder dominated in Group B of the Spring Classic tournament, held in Saint Louis in May 2017, with a score of 7.5/9, where he earned another GM Norm at that event. Shortly after, Awonder won the U.S. Junior Chess Championships in July at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center.
Tigran started playing chess at 5 and became a Grandmaster in 2004. His highest ELO rating was 2671 in March 2015. Tigran’s biggest achievements include being a member of the Armenian Gold medal team, two time Olympic Champion in 2008 and 2012; Olympic champion under 16; receiving a silver medal in World Junior under 20, 2004; 2 time Armenian champion; 5 times Armenian blitz champion; winner of international tournaments in different years, Beirut , Naidorf Memorial, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Agzamov memorial, Esfahan, Lion, Kalkatta, Golden Sands, Albena, Benasque, Chicago, Las Vegas, Philadepphia World Open.