I saw that the excellent gentleman and highway robber in blitz Kevin Goh said a few nice things about me after making his last GM-norm.

JT: Was there a different approach you took towards this event and the previous other GM norm attempts you made during the barren years that made your chances better (preparation, mindset, living conditions etc)? 

KG: “No, not really. Knowing the pairings in advance obviously helped and I spent a long time considering my options in the opening. Otherwise, it was the same type of regime that I had used in the past – solving an hour of calculation exercises every day and delving deeply into opening preparation. The only issue is that none of my opening prep proved to be really useful as everyone had decided to do something abnormal against me. I would highly recommend anyone about to play a GM event to work on Chapter 9 of GM Preparation – Calculation by Jacob Aagaard. It is a collection of exceptionally difficult exercises and it was fun for me trying to solve them. ”

You can find the entire interview here.

John always wants me to make it clear that using these books work. I have just had a six day training camp with people from three continents in Glasgow. It has been hard on them and on me, but everyone feel certain that their chess has benefited from this experience. I have been thanked by European Champions, new GMs and many others for the improvement working on these books has brought them. I get about 5-10 requests for private one on one training per week. I have one student and no time. Yes, I think a good trainer can help a lot, but I think 100 minutes with me is less than 1/100 as valuable as the Grandmaster Preparation series. All I teach is in these books. With many hundred of hours of guided training material.

There are many ways to improve. This is one of them. And it has worked repeatedly.

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