Planning for the 2008 O2C Doeberl Cup is well underway, and some important changes are in store for next years event.
Major sponsors of the 2007 Doeberl Cup, O2C, remain, and have taken over the management of the event from 2008 through to 2012.
A new and exciting venue has been found for next years event. The venue for 2008 will be the Hellenic Club in the Woden Town Centre, Canberra. The Woden Town Centre is a large shopping/business/office area located 10 minutes drive (15 minutes by bus) from Canberra City. The Hellenic Club was the venue for the 2001 Australian Junior Chess Championships, and is in walking distance of accommodation, restaurants, shops, etc The club itself contains a number of restaurants, sports bars, etc and the tournament itself will have separate analysis and lecture areas for use by the competitors.
Next years event will consist of 5 tournaments. There will be the Premier (open to all players rated above 1800 ACF or FIDE), the Major (for players rated below 2000 ACF and above 1400 ACF), the Minor (for players rated below 1600 ACF). The Seniors event is open to all players born before 21 March 1958 (ie 50 years and above). For the first time there will be an Under 1200 (ACF) event.
The Premier has been extended to 9 rounds, to provide the opportunity for players to earn FIDE title norms. The time limit will be 90m+30s. The Premier will start on Thursday 20th March 2008, with two rounds on the Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and one round on the Monday. Players playing in the Premier can request half point byes for Rounds 1 or 2.
The Major, Minor and Senior will be the standard 7 round (2,2,2,1 rounds per day) event (90m+30s time limit), starting on Friday 21st March 2008. The Under 1200 event will be a two day event (60m+10s time limit) starting on the Friday, with 3 rounds on Friday and Saturday.
Based on feedback from participants in the 2007 Doeberl Cup, the prize pool has been adjusted to provide greater balance between each of the tournaments. The Premier has a prize pool of $10,800 with a first prize of $4,000. The Major has been increased to $3,250 ($1,500 first), the Minor to $1,750 ($750 first), and the Senior to $1,000 ($500 first).
To maximise the opportunities for players to earn title norms (and to create better tournaments) the organisers have placed a limit of 80 players for each of the Premier, Major, and Minor. Places will be allocated based on order of entry, although players entering after the cutoff will be placed on a waiting list.
The organisers have also abolished late entry penalties. For 2008 all entries need to be received by the organisers before the 19th March 2008.
(Disclaimer: I am being paid as an Arbiter for this event)