Recognising the growing interest in chess among young Filipinos, particularly in the mid-teen age bracket, energy and gas technology leader Shell today announced that it is expanding its longest-running annual nationwide tilt as it launches this year’s edition in Manila this June.

For the first time, the Shell National Youth Active Chess Championship will now have a three-category competition, with the kiddies division to feature players from 7 to 12 years old (born between 2003 and 2008) and the juniors section now open to 13 to 16 bets (born between 1999 and 2002). The third division will feature senior players 17 to 20 years old (born between 1995 to 1998).

These changes make the staging of this year’s Shell Active Chess tournament a highly anticipated one in terms of participation, with maximum entries expected to mark each of the five qualifying stages leading to the national finals in September.

As Shell continues to invest in building a sustainable energy future, the nationwide chess program is one of our innovative methods in developing the potential of the Filipino youths. The Shell Active Chess competition continues with its legacy of mining the freshest Filipino talent in the sport, as part of the energy and gas technology company’s commitment to social development in various areas such as youth, education, health, road safety, environmental conservation and many others.

“We continue to discover new talents with the ever-growing number of players now taking up the sport, and because Shell believes in empowering the youth by giving them the opportunity to hone their skills and be the best they can, we continue to innovate our tournament program to produce more competitive, top caliber athletes that will someday be our national pride,” said Shell social investment manager Jackie Ampil.

For this year’s event, organisers have set a maximum number of 400 participants for the National Capital Region (NCR) and the Southern Luzon legs, while the Visayas, Southern Mindanao and the Northern Mindanao eliminations stages will be limited to the first 300 registrants.

The NCR leg will kick off the five-stage elims on June 19 and 20 at the activity center of SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City. Next in line is the Visayas leg which happens on July 4 and 5 at the SM City, Cebu. The Northern Mindanao leg will follow thereafter at the event center of SM CDO in Cagayan de Oro from July 18 to 19.

The action shifts to Southern Mindanao at SM City Davao from August 8 to 9 while the final leg in Southern Luzon is slated from August 15 to 16 at the SM City Batangas. The competition heads back to the SM Megamall from September 19 to 20 for the grand finals.

The top three placers plus the top female player in all divisions in the NCR leg will advance to the finals, while only the top two finishers plus the top female in the four other qualifying legs will advance, for a total of 48 players vying in the national finals. Format of the eliminations to the grand finals is a nine-round Swiss system tournament.

List-up for the different legs is still ongoing as of press time. Interested participants may opt to download registration forms at Outside Metro Manila, interested players can also contact their respective regional representatives: in Visayas, Odillon Badilles at (0933) 619-0210; in Northern Mindanao, Allan Cantonjos at (0936) 996-7949; in Southern Mindanao, Ronnie Tabudlong at (0943) 249-0821; and in Southern Luzon, Joselito Castro at (0906) 475-6327.

For more details about the event, please contact tournament coordinator Alex Dinoy at (0918) 370-5750 or Kay Eser at (0917) 883-8039. The event is sanctioned by the National Chess Federation of the Philippines, and is supported by Shell FuelSave, Shell V-Power Nitro+, Shell Helix Oil Change Plus, Shell Citi Visa, Shell Pepeng Pasada, Shell FuelOil Plus, , Shell Helix Ultra, Unilever and SM Supermalls.