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Chess Champions in History

Strong chess champions use other parts of their brain as normal club players. This was researched and established at the university in Konstanz, Germany.

They proved that chess masters mostly rely on their memory while normal amateur players use other parts of their brain that have the task of judging and analyzing new situations. Chess masters with higher Elo Rating used more often their memory banks than masters with lower rating.

The process to remember is faster compared to judging, analyzing and pondering. This explains why a master is much quicker coming up with a good move as he relies on his memory banks where he has stored thousands of chess ideas, chess variations and chess positions from his past games. Whereas the amateur player is always confronted with a new position which he has to analyze and judge again from scratch. This takes a lot of time.

This leads to the conclusion that people, who have a photographic memory should be able to store a lot more chess ideas than normal people. If this is so, only people with excellent memory can become chess champions because this natural advantage (for example: photographic memory) can not be overcome with training. They all do training but only some of them have the abilities to become great players.

chess champions
Former world chess champion, Tigran Petrosian

Classical World Champions

Name Year Country Age
1 1886–1894 Austria-Hungary/United States 50–58
2 Emanuel Lasker 1894–1921 Germany 26–53
3 1921–1927 Cuba 33–39
4 1927–1935
Russia 35–43
5 Max Euwe 1935–1937 34–36
6 Mikhail Botvinnik 1948–1957
Soviet Union/Russia 37–46
7 Vasily Smyslov 1957–1958 Russia 36
8 1960–1961 Latvia 24
9 Tigran Petrosian 1963–1969 Soviet Union/Armenia 34–40
10 Boris Spassky 1969–1972 Soviet Union/Russia 32–35
11 1972–1975 United States 29–32
12 Anatoly Karpov 1975–1985 Soviet Union/Russia 24–34
13 1985–2000 Soviet Union/Russia 22–30
14 Vladimir Kramnik 2000–2006 Russia 31

Chess-Playing Robot – The Mechanical Turk


FIDE World Champions 1993–2006

Name Year Country Approx. Age
13 Anatoly Karpov 1993–1999 Russia 42–48
14 Alexander Khalifman 1999–2000 Russia 33
15 2000–2002 India 31–33
16 Ruslan Ponomariov 2002–2004 Ukraine 19–21
17 Rustam Kasimdzhanov 2004–2005 Uzbekistan 25
18 Veselin Topalov 2005–2006 Bulgaria 30

World Champions 2006–present

Name Year Country Approx. Age
19/14 Vladimir Kramnik 2006–2007 Russia 31
15 2007–present India 38

Read more about World Chess Championships and Chess Matches in History!

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