Chess in 1968
by Bill Wall
In 1968, Harlow Daly won the Maine chess championship at age 85.
In 1968 International Master David Levy made a $3,000 bet that no chess computer would beat him in 10 years. He won his bet. The original bet was with John McCarthy, a distinguished researcher in Artificial Intelligence at Stanford. The bet was made at the 1968 Machine Intelligence Workshop in Edinburgh University.
In 1968, Larry Evans won the US championship.
In 1968, Julio Kaplan of Puerto Rico won the world junior championship.
In 1968, Pal Benko won the National Open in Lake Tahoe.
In 1968, the AIPE (Internation Chess Journalists) was founded by Jordi Puig.
In 1968, Bent Larsen scored 11-1 to win the US Open in Snowmass, Colorado.
In 1968, Hans Berliner won the 5th world correspondence championship.
In 1968, the Japanese national chess federation was formed
On January 21, 1968, Ilya Smirin was born in Belarus. He was awarded the IM title in 1989 and the GM title in 1990. He has won the Israeli championship 3 times.
On January 22, 1968, Maxim Sorokin (1968-2007) was born in Russia. He was awarded the GM title in 1992.
On January 25, 1968, Matthias Wahls was born in Germany. He was awarded the GM title in 1989. He won the German championship in 1996 and 1997.
On February 15, 1968, Patrick Wolff was born in the USA. In 1984, he won the US Junior championship. He was awarded the GM title in 1987. He won the US championship in 1992 and 1995.
On March 10, 1968, Neil Carr (1968-2015) was born in Newham, England. He was awarded the FM title in 1985.
On April 25, 1968, Elizabeth (Liz) Ann Neely was born. She was awarded the WIM title in 1986.
On May 8, 1968, Alexnder Fishbein was born in the USA. He was awarded the GM title in 1992.
On June 5, 1968, Csaba Horvath was born in Hungary. He was awarded the IM title in 1986 and the GM title in 1993. He was Hungarian champion in 1994 and 1998.
On June 13, 1968, Ivan Sokolov was born in Bosnia (formerly Yugoslavia). He was awarded the GM title in 1987. He was Yugoslav champion in 1988.
On June 22, 1968, Pavel Blatny was born in Brno, Czechoslovakia. He was awarded the IM title in 1986 and the GM title in 1993. He was Czechoslovakian champion in 1988 and 1990 and Czech champion in 1997 and 2000.
On June 24, 1968, Boris Gelfand was born in Belarus. He was awarded the IM title in 1987 and the GM title in 1989. He was World Championship Challenger in 2012.
In July, 1968, Bobby Fischer took 1st place at Nathanya, Israel. His USCF rating was 2739.
On August 9, 1968, Auckland student Glenn Turner, age 20, completed 68 hours of nonstop chess, claiming a new world record. He played 535 games before quitting. He was the 1968 Auckland University chess champion. (source: Logan Daily News, Ohio, Aug 9, 1968)
On September 24, 1968, Lars Bo Hansen was born in Denmark. He was awarded the IM title in 1987 and the GM title in 1990. He was Danish champion in 1993 and 1997.
On September 25, 1968, Vladimir Simagin (1919-1968) died of a heart attack only hours before he was scheduled to play in a chess tournament at Kislovodsk, in northern Caucasus. He was 49. He was awarded the IM title in 1950, the GM title in 1962 and the IMC title in 1965. (source: San Bernardino County Sun, Sep 27, 1968)
In October, 1968, Charles Powell won the 1968 Armed Forces Championship in Washington DC. Army won the team event.
On October 2, 1968, Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) died in Neuilly, France at the age of 81. He was a famous avant-garde painter who gave up art for chess. He played in the French Championships and also in the Olympiads 1928-1933.
On October 3, 1968, David Norwood was born in Franworth, England. He was awarded the IM title in 1985 and the GM title in 1988.
On October 26, 1968, Stefan Erdelyi (1905-1968) died in Resita, Romania at the age if 62. He was Romanian champion in 1931, 1934 and 1949. He was awarded the IM title in 1950.
In 1968, Dris Benabud of Morocco only played one game (which he lost) at the Lugano Chess Olympiad and 2nd reserve board, the fewest games of any participant in a chess Olympiad. The Virgin Islands (combined team of British and U.S. Virgin Islands) made their first appearance, despite not being a member of FIDE. Bobby Fischer showed up in Lugano to play for the USA team, but withdrew because of the poor lighting in the tournament hall. He asked to play his games in a private room, but the organizers refused, so Fischer withdrew. The Soviet team (Petrosian, Spassky, Korchnoi, Geller, Polugaevsky, Smyslov) won without a single game loss.
On December 1, 1968, James Lazos (2316) won the American Open in Santa Monica, scoring 7.5-0.5. Walter Browne and Larry Remlinger tied for 2nd.
On December 15, 1968, Walter Ivins (1870-1968) died in Tucson, Arizona at age 98. Played chess for 85 years.
On December 31, 1968, Carl Ahues (1883-1968) died in Hamburg at the age of 85. He was Berlin champion in 1910 and German champion in 1929. He was awarded the IM title in 1950.
In December 1968, Walter Browne won the California Closed Championship.