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The $1m Magnus Carlsen Tour: A new era for chess

by Sagar Shah - 14/05/2020

The reigning World Champion and World no.1 Magnus Carlsen has taken it upon himself to revolutionize online chess. After the conclusion of Magnus Carlsen Invitational little over a week ago, in a press release Carlsen decided to announce Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour which will be a series of four super tournaments. The Grand Final will be played between each of the winners of the four tournaments. It will be the new "majors" for online chess. The entire tour will have a combined prize fund of $1m which is the highest ever for online chess. Read the article to know the participants of the next event Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge which starts in five days on May 19th. Photo: Fred Jonny / Press Release

The Magnus Carlsen Tour

Press Release


World Champion Magnus Carlsen today revealed his $1 million vision for a new online chess tour designed to cement the game’s future in the public eye. Four super-tournaments culminating in a Grand Final in August will become the new “majors” for online chess, the Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour. It follows the breakout success of the Magnus Carlsen Invitational which shattered all records for online viewership and now serves as the first leg of the Tour. Carlsen believes carrying the momentum into an online Tour presents the opportunity to establish chess permanently as a mass media sport.

Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour banner | Photo: Fred Jonny / Press Release

The World Champion said: “The Invitational was a lot of fun and we heard great feedback from the players, our broadcast partners and the viewers.“While physical chess tournaments and sports are still either cancelled or postponed, bringing an entire chess tour online is what I feel is right for chess now."The Invitational was the first online chess tournament to be broadcast on TV. It went out on Spanish, German, Russian, and Czech TV and was covered live on Norway’s biggest commercial channel.


The Tour will continue to bring exciting chess entertainment to viewers via TV, streaming services and on throughout the summer. 


Tour Schedule

Magnus Carlsen Invitational: Apr 18 - May 3

Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge: May 19 - June 3

Online Chess Masters: June 20 – July 5

Legends of Chess: July 21 – August 5

Tour Final: August 9 – August 20

The top four players of each tournament are guaranteed a place in the following one. The Grand Final will be played between the winners of the individual tournaments.


The combined prize fund is $1 million, the highest ever in online chess. The next tournament, the Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge, starts on May 19.


The name builds on the heritage of the Lindores Abbey Chess Stars, a Scottish super-tournament held for the first time last year with Magnus Carlsen, Vishy Anand, Sergey Karjakin, and Ding Liren.

Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge players | Photo: Various sources / Press Release

This physical tournament has now moved online to join the Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour and is being put on in association with the Lindores Abbey Heritage Society, which maintains the historic site. Under the tournament’s social media hashtag #HeritageChess, fans can learn more about a participating player and his country’s chess history every day in an effort to show the rich heritage of chess on which the players’ careers have been built. The Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge will feature four returning players from the Magnus Carlsen Invitational. They are Magnus Carlsen, Hikaru Nakamura, Ding Liren, and Alireza Firouzja.

Eight new players will be introduced: Wesley So, Alexander Grischuk, Sergey Karjakin, Levon Aronian, Wei Yi, Daniil Dubov, Jan-Krzysztof Duda, and Yu Yangyi. chess24 will cover every tournament in nine languages, with commentary beginning at 3PM CEST each tournament day. The official home of the Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour is


chess24 fans will continue to be able to challenge the top players in “Banter Blitz” shows and follow live commentary and post-match interviews from the star players.



Leon Watson

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