Peter Mingrone aspires to emulate his favourite grand masters when he plays chess. (Photo courtesy of Peter Mingrone)

Peter Mingrone aspires to emulate his favourite grand masters when he plays chess. (Photo courtesy of Peter Mingrone)

‘There’s no luck in chess’: UVic student, 22, takes first place at Canada Day tournament

Saanich resident finishes first in the chess tournament held from July 1-3 in Richmond

Peter Mingrone from Saanich won the Canada Day Open chess tournament on Sunday (July 3) – beating out 24 other competitors for a cash prize and bragging rights.

The 22-year-old University of Victoria student competed in the under 1800 section, playing a total of six games over the three-day weekend. Divisions are based on skillsets, with Mingrone competing in the second tier.

Each game averaged three to four hours in length. For Mingrone, chess is as much a game of mental stamina as it is strategy.

“It’s pretty tiring,” he said. “It’s sort of like a marathon in that aspect. You have to remain focused throughout the entire duration of the game, no matter how long it may go.”

At the end of the long weekend, Mingrone finished in first place with four wins and two draws, taking home a prize of $500.

He began competing four years ago before starting his course in mathematics and statistics at UVic.

“I like competition but I think with chess it’s 100 per cent logical,” he said. “There’s no luck in chess. It all comes down to how well you can calculate and evaluate a position.”

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