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Fourteen-year-old Rachel Chen has spent the last few months criss-crossing the world in pursuit of success at the chessboard.

The Vancouver-born student scored a major win when she came first in her age category at the Pan-American youth championship in Montevideo, Uruguay last summer. She followed that up with a strong showing at the World Youth championships in Romania.

Her latest international foray was at the world Under-16 championships in Azerbaijan.

Chen’s family moved from Canada to Shanghai, and then relocated once again during the early part of the pandemic to Los Angeles. She continues to represent Canada at international competitions.

She admits it’s tough to catch up with her Grade 9 school work after travelling to an international event, but she thinks the experience is worth it. She loves the atmosphere at Canadian team events, where she has made many friends through the years.

She also excels at competitive math, and competes on her school’s volleyball team.

“I’m probably going to finish high school here and decide where I’ll live after that,” she says. In the meantime, she’s excited to keep competing internationally. Her goal is to claim the international chess federation’s women’s master’s title early next year.

Rachel Chen v. Valerie Ruchinskaya, Hamilton, 2022

Handout

How does White finish off her opponent?

White played 1.Qg7+ and Black resigned, because Qxg7 2.e7+ Qf7 3.e8=Q or R checkmate.