Well, it took a lot longer than it did to get to 1500, but I finally broke 1600!  I can’t believe it only took two months to go up 400 points, and then I spent the next five months in the 1500s before finally breaking 1600.  You can see the difference in the graph of my ranking.  The rate of change has obviously slowed down dramatically.

1600 Chess

I’ve now played 72 standard games, with 37 wins, 30 losses, and 5 draws.  Not a great record, but the average ranking of people who beat me is 1811, so I think I’m doing pretty well, especially since my average opponent for the last three months is 1691.  For the last few months, I’ve only been playing games against people higher than me, so that partially explains my record.

In fact, the last two games I just won yesterday that finally put me over 1600 were against a 1736 and 1664, the 1736 opponent being my best win ever by a lot, although even the 1664 would have been a new record, I think.  Both were good games, I think.

Against the 1664 opponent, we both made blunders.  I nabbed an unprotected pawn early on, then blundered getting overly-aggressive and lost two pawns, before managing to capture a bishop of his for free.  After that, I traded pieces until it was his bishop and seven pawns against my bishop, knight, and five pawns.  He traded his bishop for my knight, and I was able to use my remaining bishop to get enough of his pawns that he resigned before I could get a queen.  It was a tense endgame.  One wrong move, and he would have gotten a queen.

Against the 1736, it was a pretty normal game, evenly matched, until turn 26, when he blundered and let me take a bishop whose only defense was a pawn between my rook and his queen.  He could have taken my queen, but I would have gotten his right back.  He messed up his recovery, and then made an awful attack that saw his trading a rook for a pawn without any good follow-through, making three blunders and two mistakes, according to Chess.com’s analysis.  I was able to trade queens, and by this point, I was up a rook and a knight, so he resigned.

Anyway, productive day, chesswise!  1600 was my goal back when I first began, so I’m pretty satisfied now.  I’ll keep trying, but I think 1700, if I ever get there, is going to be a lot harder.  Wish me luck!

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