Perennial leader Bryan Prescod did not falter in the last round and duly won the 1st Qualifier for the 2017 Barbados National chess championship from the 24 player field. After leading from the start, Prescod brushed aside current Candidate master Under 12 champion Leigh Sandiford of Harrison College in his final match to score an impressive 8 and a half points from 9 games.
Finishing in second was FIDE master Dr. Philip Corbin on 7 and a half points after he battled to a draw with Julissa Figueroa of Guatemala in the final round. Dominic Castilho defeated Corie Elcockto reach 6 and a half points and claim sole 3rd position to cap a successful outing.
Wily veteran Othneil Harewood again showed his prowess in winning from current Under 20 champion Justin Parsons in the last round to claim fourth spot on 6 points. Figueroa the newest addition to the Barbados chess scene with her last round draw gained the coveted 5th spot on 5 and a half points.
Other final round results saw victories for ace road tennis player Emar Edwards, Vanessa Greenidge, Kyle Sandiford, Kiarra Eversley, Aaron Haynes, Shane Skinner, Richard Haddock and Joshua Burke.
The first five places, Prescod, Corbin, Del Castilho, Harewood and Figueroa all qualified for the finals of the Barbados chess championship slated for August later in the year. It was a memorable tournament not only for winner Prescod, but also for the Del Castilho family. For from this tournament, two family members of current national champion Martyn Del Castilho moved forward to join him in the finals. These are Martyn’s new wife Julissa Figueroa and his brother Dominic. It seems that a new family dynasty is set to dominate senior chess as the Sandiford siblings Kyle and Leigh have dominated the junior ranks.A memorable first event for the Barbados Chess Federation indeed.