2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby rich beckwith on Thu Jul 16, 2015 6:45 am

Regarding the clocks issue, there are other angles to this. A few years back, Hugh Devlin (then WCDF-president) asked checker federations internationally to follow harmonized WCDF checker rules, which includes an expectation to use timeclocks. ACF has since tried to do this, at least with US Nationals-Masters groups. Our National Tournament this year is also a stage of the inaugural 2015 WCDF World Cup (following Italy, Barbados, and Scottish Open, in progress).
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby JR Smith on Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:46 am

I’ve read all your comments and suggestions. This is the only way we will be able to improve ACF – through open dialogue. I respect everyone’s post and agree our National should be the top drawer of checkers. It deserves the best for the best!

We will have to roll with what we got and improvise where we can to get past this National. A lot of time and effort has gone into this National Tourney and also keep in mind it was the only bid which almost didn’t happen. Can we learn from this, I hope so? Can we do better, I hope so!

Below I will try to answer some of your questions and comments.
We will follow the division brackets out lined in the (Schedule). http://nccheckers.org/NCCA/2015%20GAYP% ... hedule.htm
I understand we will have current ACF ratings to place players in their correct division. Also notice player’s rating has decreased from the past since we moved from Butler’s/WCDF to Strange’s system.

ACF should clarify a player’s division after winning a National, and how long he must wait to play down again. Tennessee follows the unwritten gentleman’s fairness rule that you should not play down until after 3 years if your skill lever and current rating dictates appropriate division. ACF should also clarify when a player can play up without a current ACF rating, like play several qualifying game with a Master to prove his checker knowledge.

I’m sure there are guide lines for organizing a GAYP National in the ACF Tournament Guide Manual. We should have also consulted our recently elected Players Representative for assistance and guidance for formatting and scheduling this GAYP National. However, Frank Davis our Sponsor/Director has been considering what the players wanted. He has phone interviewed a number of Masters and cutting the game time seemed to be what most of them wanted. This was discussed at the Southern business meeting when we had a core group of players that usually attend most of the Lebanon tournaments. They liked the idea and a number of them played the MO Mixer which followed the same format. There wasn’t but a few instances where slow play was concluded by the referee and we were playing 3-Move and 11-Man.
I allotted 3 hours per game for our 11-Man WTM and I can only think of a few openings where the opponents used over 2 ½ hours for both sides out of 80 some games.

What are you asking for; 3½ hour rounds and a 1 hour break between rounds? That’s a problem now, but we have some flexibility in the 2+3+3+2 schedule. We could also cut a few rounds and expand game time. We will have clocks, recorder game sheets, and a clock assistant.

The comment was made that an opponent could use 2 hours on the 1st game and leave nothing for his opponent on the 2nd game. I agree a clock with required moves is the professional way to avoid this situation; however, you have the right to request the 1st game to be concluded by the referee so your 2nd game is started on time. View Rules: http://nccheckers.org/NCCA/2015%20TN%20 ... 0rules.htm BTW, even if you play with a time-clock you still have to monitor your opponent to making sure he meets his criterion of the game, and reset the default time control, essentially the same thing as call the referee to start the 2nd game.

If we have a good group of Masters that want this, then bring it to the floor at the opening business meeting. All you need is a motion, a 2nd, and vote it in. Frank and Mary do these tournaments for the players. If you want to play with a clock then bring your clock. There will be 8 digital “ChessTimer I” and game recorder sheets at the tournament.

We original planned a long, drawn out tourney using John Acker and Tim Laverty as official referee assistants but that fell through. The more we ask our core player what they wanted cause us to change and put it to a vote.

BTW, I only got one pre-registration form & survey back in the 9 months it has been on the checker event calendar. Players just don’t respond to such.

Perhaps we should jog our memory… Some recent Nationals have requested larger entry fees, clock requirements requiring 30 moves in the 1st hour recorded by the clock and 15 moves each successive ½ hour. A long and elaborate format and schedule but only a handful of players participated, or the tournament terminates before the scheduled finish date, or a frenzy of agreed draws on the last round. What’s with that?

I like Michael Holmes’ post about introducing a new player to our game or recruiting and developing a new tournament player. What if we required the National Master to be a current or life-time ACF member, wear a business or casual suit (a lot of today US citizens don’t do this for Church or Funerals), record their games, use clocks with a move requirement, certify they brought at least one new player to a checker tournament each year (could be from their youth club), and we strictly observe these requirement. Would this be the right professional direction? Would this help or hinder National attendance? Will this take the fun out of checkers? Would it help to put more $'s into youth programs, sponsor youth clubs, and promote school checker club programs? Make it mandatory for members to participate in these programs?

One more thing, read the last paragraph of this link: http://nccheckers.org/NCCA/Chess%20Time ... ctions.htm

We changed the tournament thinking it might improve our numbers? The conference room is large, well-lighted, soft chairs with ideal sized tables. I still have my fingers crossed. JR Smith
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Michael Holmes on Fri Jul 17, 2015 7:13 pm

[flash=][/flash]If we could get each director/referee/tournament sponsor to promote the youth section with a guaranteed amount (even if the amount is small) that would be a start. Post it in one or more schools and libraries. This is a lot to ask from them. It is worth the time. It is worth the commitment. It needs 1 year of advertising. I know from my weak tournament turnouts. Again, i ask how many h@ve intoduced the game to other people this year? How many have brought new players to tournaments this year? We need help and I am asking for your help now, please.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby George Hay on Sat Jul 18, 2015 1:51 pm

Whatever happened to speed checkers, 5 minute games or faster? Chess and 10x10 run these kind of tournaments all of the time!
How about joining 10x10 and Chess in the Twenty First Century? I consider "classic time" the best test of skill, but how long can
the ACF ignore speed checkers as a fun and popular way of playing? Also, the WCDF, am I the only one who considers the time controls for WCM's badly outdated?
I am not for copying the FMJD automatically, but it seems to me they have their act together when it comes to time controls.
Using Fischer Clocks and timing the entire game is the way to go, not 30 moves in whatever time....Yikes!
With Fischer Clocks for "classic time" the players could be compelled to write down all of there moves all of the time.
The Italian Open Checkers 2015 had time controls of 40 minutes per game, plus 10 seconds per move increment.
That looks like good time control to me!

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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby bazkitcase5 on Sat Jul 18, 2015 5:32 pm

Some of these are good ideas and things we should definitely focus on in the near future. However, my comments were mostly targeting the changes regarding this years National Tournament. It isn't necessarily the format or the length of time for each game that bothered me. It is GAYP, so I'm sure most games will not have any issues. I just consider clocks to be a more professional way of going about things and to quit using them seems like a step back, rather than a step forward. Several other masters whom I have talked to also agree. Also, even if you think of it as 2, 1 hour and 15 minute games, it is still possible under the current system for 1 player to take up too much time, either giving them an unfair advantage, or effectively allowing them to just waste time to get to an "adjudication" faster. So not only are clocks more professional, but they make sure both players are playing with equal amounts of time. Clock management is a skill necessarily to play at the highest level in competitive events.

Personally, I don't really like the adjudication system at all. I do think it is fair (at least when a computer program is used, due to its higher accuracy), but I feel like it defeats the purpose of players actually playing the game. It also rob us of some potentially great games, such as my previous examples with my 2003 game against Moiseyev and Beckwith's 2004 Octopus game with Moiseyev. Imagine if those epic games had been cut short due to adjudication. However, at the same time, I understand the difficulty in trying to find a time control that allows 2 players to play a quality game, into a potential long end game, while still allowing the Tournament Director to stick close to their round scheduling. It is impossible to stick to a schedule and know when the next round will start when we don't know how long a potential game or games will last. Figuring this out is going to be more of a discussion for after this years National Tournament, but it was kind of the point of my original post, which is for the ACF to set up some proper guidelines for its own National Tournament that are fair for the players, while still maintaining the integrity of the game, that can be used at every future National Tournament, regardless of who is going to be the Tournament Director.

I also want to be clear that my comments are for the Masters Division. Myself, and others I've talked to, believe that players in one division shouldn't be voting to make rules for a different division. I would think it is perfectly acceptable that different divisions can play with different guidelines and time limits, considering they play at a different pace. However, for this particular National Tournament, being we are at most playing 3 rounds in a day, I personally would like to see 3 hour rounds. I know that seems like a lot of time for a GAYP tournament, but considering this should be the ACF's premier tournament, it gives a fair chance for quality games, while still fitting neatly into scheduling. Such as: 9-12 (lunch) 1-4 4-7, just as an idea or if we could shift it up an hour earlier, but either way, there is plenty of time in the day. Those who play faster will just get a longer break in between games.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Chexhero on Sat Jul 18, 2015 9:31 pm

Clayton's explanation covers much of what I have been thinking, although I will discuss one point. I get there are master players that prefer shorter times with no time clocks to be used. It is convenient to not have to worry about pushing a clock after every move. I understand that many of our masters have played in many tournaments over their careers and may rather just want to take the formal aspect out of it. However, and I don't mean this in a mean way, but we need to structure tournaments in a way which best represents the future of our game. If we do not do this, the ACF will eventually die. To represent our game best, we need to find ways to increase professionalism at tournaments, not decrease it. Utilizing time clocks does without a doubt increase professionalism as Clayton explained. Perhaps it might be a wise choice to decrease time for GAYP Nationals being that it does allow for more opponents and/or more breathing room between rounds. This is certainly something that can be discussed. Our main focus is just assuring that the professionalism and growth of our game goes forward, and not backwards.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby JR Smith on Sun Jul 19, 2015 10:13 pm

Hello Clayton and Joe, I agree with your comments and suggestions. Everyone understands and wants the professionalism you are talking about.

I take full responsibility for confusing Master players we would not be using clocks. Frank is not familiar enough or comfortable enough with time clocks to solve a problem that might arise from their use; however, I will definitely have clock assistants who can adjudicate for the clock user.

My clocks are the simple Chess Timer I we use for kids so they see the likeness to chess and the clock can take a beating. They only count down from a set default time-control.

ACF does not have digital clocks that will let you program. I believe the only clocks available are those Charles Walker and Alan Millhone own which are analog BHB or Jergen's Olympia chess clocks which can not do something like: 30/60, 15/30 G15 (+5d). The 5 seconds maybe Fisher increments or Bronsteine delays per move.

The analog clock can’t even do a fraction of an hour which must be entered by backing up the minute hand and this eventually causes the clock hands to misalign by turning them counterclockwise.

Richard Beckwith said he has a digital that shows move count, allows multi time-controls with increments or delays seconds.
So definitely bring your time clocks or plan to play on the Chess Timer I’s available at the tournament.

Also Richard suggested Master players could consider the 2009 & 2011 GAYP Nationals where Master's did 3 rounds a day at 9-12:30; 1-4:30; 5-8:30 (and players could start early if pairings are ready).

Even if you wanted 4 hours... 8-12 ; 1hr lunch; 1-5; 30 minute break; 5:30-9:30.

Masters should get together and discuss and choose what they want in the business meeting. Of course Majors and Minors will stick to the schedule.

So Clayton and Joe please attend this GAYP National and be ready to suggest your Master format / schedule. I'm sure the majority of Masters will endorse it.

BTY, it looks like we are going to have a good crowd of player attending this GAYP National! Thank you, JR Smith
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Alex_Moiseyev on Sun Jul 19, 2015 10:49 pm

What is most important for me in this story - RESPECT. Any proposals and format make some sense and has positives and negatives, but this format shouldn't be selected 2 weeks before tournament start. It looks like some sort of tradition now change something in format every year. And every change is declared as method to improve game, make it more attractive, get more players and make it more professional.

But still we are where we are.

I prefer to use clocks.

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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Michael Holmes on Mon Jul 20, 2015 6:02 am

I have heard that some want to see checkers grow. I havent heard anyone giving ideas or examples of how to get more people to play. To the reader I ask again: How many people have you introduced the game to this year? How many people have you played a game with to get them interested in checkers? Young adults and even middle aged kids are in every city and most have some sort of community events/centers. Get involved with checkers in your community.

Another comment I keep hearing is that the ACF should increase the professionalism: Making a tournament longer and fingerpointing shouldnt be on that list.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Chexhero on Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:13 am

Michael Holmes wrote:
Another comment I keep hearing is that the ACF should increase the professionalism: Making a tournament longer and fingerpointing shouldnt be on that list.


Michael, we are not suggesting to make the tournaments longer. We are only suggesting that time clocks should be used. I personally prefer a longer time setting giving I rely more on brute force calculation than positional understanding, but I understand the benefits of shorter time.

I don't mean to fingerpoint, and I am not calling anyone out specifically, but do feel it is important for players to consider what is best for the future of our game. I don't feel enough people are doing that, but maybe I'm wrong. Clayton, you and your son, and myself are all young players and I am just trying to ensure we are still playing checkers together at future tournaments 20 years from now. And not just us, but many other players as well. We certainly need to encourage more people to come out to tournaments as you suggest, but we also want them to be impressed by what they see.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby ae_ted on Mon Jul 20, 2015 9:55 am

amazing!
If Anyone in acf cares about the game, then get Timers! Now! I accept No excuses; get modern ones and I do not want to hear about " can't afford"!! There are several funds out there that ACT supposedly controls Spend some of that money Now for modern timers before there is no more use for the funds and ACF is deader than it is now..
:lol: ok, lets hear tthe same excuses for not doing this..fund controll, no time, can't,etc.
:lol: this format discussion iis comical, 5 yrs ago I suggest a uniform torunimant format to be adopted by ACF, :lol:
the subjects in the above posts should be fixed.............but stay tuned next year for the newest versions.



:cry: :cry:
Sportsmanship is more important than a win any day Better to be known for word and honor than a win
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby bazkitcase5 on Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:28 am

I think promoting the game to newer players and teaching them how to play is a great idea and something we should all be doing. It is definitely something that I personally could do a better job with, but for now, that is a long term discussion that needs its own thread. I was trying to keep the focus on this years National Tournament, being this is the forum thread about the 2015 National Tournament format & schedule.

My main goal in my posts was to propose ideas for more proper guidelines for this years and future National Tournaments. This is the first National Tournament in a very long time and since I started playing that isn't going to be using clocks (as far as I know) and I simply felt like that was taking a step backwards and I thought I should speak up. Growing the game and the ACF again is going to take all of us doing our parts and being able to have open discussions without anybody getting their feelings hurt. For now, we can't make new players come to tournaments, but I feel like we can make the ACF great again and more organized and professional so that when they do come to tournaments, they will want to come back.
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby JR Smith on Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:28 pm

I appreciate all the comments and suggestions, it's the only way to improve checkers and ACF is through healthy dialogue. I personally thank Clayton, Joe & Michael for clarified their points.

Now let’s get back to the main thread of clocks. Masters may play using clocks, just square it away in the business meeting. Masters may use computer analysis for endgame results and change their playing format and schedule, just square it away in the business meeting. Please know ahead of time what is ideal and workable for the Master's Division. Clayton has already posted what he thinks is appropriate and this should pass with a majority vote by Masters only. Let’s be precise and brief when presenting the changes.

If you don't bring your own clock and get agreement with your opponent on your setup then you may want to read how the simple Chess Timer I works so you are familiar with this time clock's procedure and operation:

My clocks are the simple Chess Timer I. We use these clocks for kids so they may see the likeness to chess as a sister game and of course, these clock can take a beating.

This clock can only count down from a set default time-control. For example our 3 hour Master round at the 2015 GAYP National in Lebanon, TN would be set as a default time – control as: (0:45:00) for each side for the 1st game of the round. Assuming opponents must meet the criterion of 30 moves in the 1st hour recorded by the clock and 15 moves each successive ½ hour. You make sure 30 moves were made in his 30 minutes and you did also. You do this by observing his clock when it reads (0:15:00) there should be 30 moves recorded and your time should be more that this (assuming you are moving faster). It's probably good practice to “pause” the clock while you make this observation. A player who doesn’t forfeits the game. A player has 15 more minutes on his clock to make 15 more moves but we don't concern ourselves about this because of the simplicity of our clock. You are concerned about using the remainder of your time on the clock to win or ask for a draw, with time on your clock you may “pause” the clock and ask the referee to adjudicate the draw; however, if your time runs out first without concluding the game as a win or draw you loses. The clock’s ON/OFF switch on the bottom of the clock is switched OFF, wait 4 seconds then switch it back ON. This will reset the default time-control as above for your next game. I should add that whoever fails to meet the total of 45 moves (second interval) and runs out of time also loses. Most checker games are over within 60 moves and 99% of them at 90 moves. I have clock instructions here: http://nccheckers.org/NCCA/Chess%20Time ... ctions.htm
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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Alex_Moiseyev on Mon Jul 27, 2015 10:53 am

So ... what is turn and who plays in all Divisions ?

Any results from first couple rounds ?

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Re: 2015 GAYP National Tournament format & schedule

Postby Mac Banks on Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:49 pm

I agree with Clayton 100 percent. Many years ago, I was playing the most likely slowest checker player in history, Les Balderson, in a National tourney and in those days clocks were not used and
the ACF depended on the honor of the players to get 4 games in during a six hour round. Well,
Les just wouldn't move and we were only on our first game with 3 games to go. When the referee came around , he discovered in horror that we had not completed even one game. With a couple of minutes to go, Les conceded the game and asked me to play the next 3 games in less than 3 minutes and I flatly refused for I had been sitting for hours and knew that clocks had to be put in place for future tournaments that the masters at least were in.

I know our numbers are down and some players don't want to pay the extra day for a hotel but like Clayton pointed out, it is the shinning moment for the checker world and to reduce the National tourney to just another tourney does not help checkers at all. Some players travel 3,000 miles to a tourney and when it is reduced, it is very expensive to attend for so short of a time. I know our checker committee are doing the very best they can but rules should be inplaced for the National tourney for at least a year ahead as pointed out by Clayton.
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