Wesley So leads FIDE Circuit for Candidates Tournament qualifiers

Wesley So FIDE Circuit
GM Wesley So consistently played precise games that earned him the top spot on the FIDE Circuit Leaderboard. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes

Filipino American Grandmaster Wesley So is leading the International Chess Federation (FIDE) Circuit for the newest qualification path to the 2024 Candidates Tournament, the event that decides the challenger for the World Championship match.

The three-time United States Chess Champion originally from Bacoor province of the Philippines topped the FIDE circuit rating at the end of February 2023 which was released on March 1st, after solid performances in two of the year’s strongest tournaments so far – the Tata Steel Masters and WR Chess Masters where Wesley So placed 4th in both events.

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The inaugural Chess.com Global Champion and Titled Tuesday winner scored a total of 30.80 circuit points after picking up 16.20 points at the Tata Steel Masters in January and 14.60 points at the WR Chess Masters in February.

Wesley So dislodged former leader Anish Giri of the Netherlands who scored 29.03 points for 2nd place, while fellow American team member Levon Aronian placed 3rd with 26.35 points.

The FIDE Council approved at the end of last year the use of the FIDE Circuit (Path D) as its newest and 4th qualification path to the Candidates Tournament. The player accumulating the most points during 2023 in eligible tournaments qualifies for the 2024 Candidates Tournament. The final score is calculated as the sum of the player’s five highest results.

Check out the FIDE Circuit race top 10 as of February 28, 2023, in this tweet:

SEND CONGRATULATIONS in the comments below to Wesley So, the new leader of the FIDE Circuit for the Candidates Tournament qualifiers!

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