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Fabiano Caruana


Fabiano Caruana

Template:Infobox chess player

Fabiano Luigi Caruana (born July 30, 1992) is an American-born Italian chess grandmaster and former chess prodigy.

On 15 July 2007 Caruana became a grandmaster (GM) at the age of 14 years, 11 months, 20 days—the youngest grandmaster in the history of both Italy and the United States.

Personal life and chess beginnings

Fabiano Luigi Caruana was born on July 30, 1992 in Miami, United States, to Lou and Santina Caruana.[1] He is solely of Italian ancestry—all eight of his great grandparents originate from Italy.[2] At the age of four his family relocated from Miami to the borough of Brooklyn, Park Slope, New York. Coincidentally, this was the same neighborhood where Bobby Fischer lived during his youth. At the age of five, his chess talent was discovered in an after school chess program at Congregation Beth Elohim in Park Slope. The same year he played his first tournament at the Polgar Chess Center in Queens, New York.[2]

Until the age of twelve, he lived and played in the United States, occasionally traveling to Europe and South America to participate in tournaments.

His first chess coach, from age six to eight, was National Master (NM) Bruce Pandolfini, and from age eight to twelve he studied with GM Miron Sher. In 2004 at age twelve, he relocated with his family from Brooklyn to Madrid to pursue a professional chess career. He trained with International Master (IM) Boris Zlotnik in Madrid,[3] and in 2007 he moved to Budapest to train with grandmaster Alexander Chernin.[2]

Chess career

At age fourteen, Caruana became the youngest grandmaster of both the United States and Italy, surpassing the record set by Hikaru Nakamura.[4]


  • Grandmaster title – Caruana obtained his final GM norm earning the grandmaster title in July. Due to his young age and having broken the prior record of Hikaru Nakamura as youngest ever American to become a Grandmaster, he received much attention from the chess world.
  • Vlissingen chess tournament – In August he played the strong Vlissingen chess tournament in the Netherlands. His last round opponent was former FIDE world champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov. Caruana playing black, drew the game in 82 moves, and won the tournament with performance of 2715.
  • Italian Championship – At the end of the year he participated in the Italian Championship. The prior year he was the co-champion of Italy by tying with Michele Godena but losing the fifth rapid play-off game. This year he won with a score of +8 (9½/11) to become the youngest ever Italian champion.[5]


  • Corus C – This was his first experience at Corus and throughout much of the tournament he was the clear leader. His last round opponent was Parimarjan Negi, and Caruana needed ½ point to win the tournament. Caruana won the game in 61 moves and the tournament with a final score of +7 (10/13) and performance of 2696.[6]
  • Ruy Lopez Festival – Taking place in early April, the Ruy Lopez Festival included a seven round closed tournament, and a two-day rapid open tournament. In the seven round closed tournament, Caruana had a disappointing result of −2 (2½/7) with performance of 2513. The two-day rapid open tournament that followed was won by Caruana with a score of +6 (7½/9) followed by Michael Adams, Julio Granda Zuniga, and Dzhurabek Khamrakulov all with a score of +5 (7/9).
  • Mitropa Cup – In June he played first board for Italy at the Mitropa Cup, which is a four-board team competition amongst 10 "middle" European nations. He scored +6 (7½/9) winning the first board prize with performance of 2810.[7]
  • Cap d'agde – The event was a knock-out closed rapid tournament organized into two round robin groups of eight players each, with the top four scorers of each group proceeding to the quarter-finals, the semi-finals, and then the finals. The time control was 25 minutes with a 10-second increment. In his group, Caruana placed first with a score of +4 (5½/7) winning against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Xiangzhi Bu, Alexandra Kosteniuk, Marie Sebag, and drawing against Vassily Ivanchuk, Ivan Cheparinov, and Kateryna Lahno. Caruana's performance was 2866 and he had qualified to enter the quarter-finals. His quarter-final match, which was against Anatoly Karpov, was closely fought. Karpov won the first game, and Caruana won the second. Then tie-break games with time control of 15 minutes were played. The first four games were all drawn. The fifth game Karpov won, and Caruana was knocked out.
  • 38th Olympiad – This was Caruana's first Olympiad. On the first board he played against Levon Aronian in the first round, Viktor Korchnoi in the fourth round, Michael Adams in the fifth round, Emanuel Berg in the seventh round, and Peter Leko in the eighth round. He lost to Aronian and Leko, and won against Adams, Korchnoi, and Berg. His final score was 7½/11 with performance of 2696.[8]
  • Italian Championship – Caruana successfully defended his title winning the title for the second consecutive year with a score of +5 (8/11).[9]


  • Corus B – Having won Corus C 2008, Caruana received and accepted invitation to Corus B 2009 which was of category 16 with average Elo of 2641. Throughout the tournament his standings ranged from first to third place. Going into the last round he was tied for second and his opponent was Nigel Short who was in clear first. The game lasted 67 moves. Caruana won the game and the tournament with a score of +4 (8½/13) and performance of 2751. Caruana is the first player ever to win both Corus C and Corus B in consecutive years placing clear first in both.[10]
  • In April Caruana played in the Russian Team Championship at Sochi with the "Club 64" of Moscow, scoring 5 points out of 6; his team placed second after Tomsk.
  • In May he played with the Italian team in the "Mitropa Cup" at Rogaska Slatina in Slovenia, scoring 6 points out of 8 and winning the individual gold medal on first board.


  • December – he won the Italian Championship for the third time with a score of 9 points out of 11 games.
  • From 28 December 2010 to 6 January 2011 Caruana played in the 53rd Reggio Emilia Tournament. He placed 6th out of 10 and tied 7 out of his 9 games (only winning, again, against Nigel Short).


  • January – at the Gibraltar Masters, he finished on place 5 behind Ivanchuk, Short, Külaots and Roiz.
  • July – he won with 7 points out of 10 at the AAI tournament in New Delhi (category 17).
  • December – he won the Italian National Championship for the fourth time with a score of 10 points out of 11 games. He had previously won the 2007 and 2008 national championships, and did not play the 2009 national championship due to a calendar conflict with the FIDE World Cup.


  • March – at Reykjavik Open 2012 in Reykjavik, Iceland he finished 1st with 7½/9.[12]
  • June – at the 7th Tal Memorial he finished second with a score of 5½/9 after tiebreak with Teimour Radjabov behind Magnus Carlsen.[13]
  • September–October – At the Grand Slam Chess Final in São Paulo and Bilbao, Caruana won 4 games, drew 5 and lost 1, tying for 1st with Magnus Carlsen, but eventually losing both blitz tiebreak games and thus ending 2nd.[15]
  • November – At the Bucharest Kings, organized in Bucharest by the Romanian capital chess club, Caruana ties all the games to get 3rd in a short-list, yet strong tournament (average ELO 2746.5) behind Vassily Ivanchuk, winner, and Veselin Topalov, runner up.[15]

Tabulation number of wins in major recurring chess tournaments

Among the many tournaments organized, some particularly stand out because of history or category. This tabulation gives an overview of the number of Caruana's wins in the major recurring chess tournaments and world championship matches.

Linares (1978) Wijk aan Zee (1938) Dortmund (1928) Tal Memorial (2006) M-Tel Masters (2005) Nanjing Super-GM (2008) London Chess Classic (2009) Biel (1968) Fide Grand Prix (2009) Bilbao Masters (2008) WC match/tournament Total won
1 1 2

See also: Tabulation comparison between current and past major chess players

Federation relationships

National Chess Federation memberships

  • He has been a member of the United States Chess Federation since the age of 5, and a member of the Italian Chess Federation since 2005.

National Chess Federation rankings

  • United States Chess Federation: highest ranked player – USCF Record (December 2012)[16]
  • Italian Chess Federation (FSI): highest ranked player

National Chess Federation Championships

  • United States Chess Federation – Caruana received and accepted an invitation from the United States Chess Federation's Executive Board to the 2013 US Championship.[17] Later, however, he decided not to play in it, and competed in the FIDE Grand Prix instead.
  • Italian Chess Federation – Caruana won the Italian National Championship in 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. He did not play the championship in 2009 and 2012.

World Chess Federation (FIDE) affiliation

Caruana, possessing dual citizenship of both the United States and Italy, has the option of FIDE affiliation with either the United States Chess Federation or the Italian Chess Federation. He plays for Italy.

Head-to-head record versus selected grandmasters

(Rapid, blitz and blindfold games not included; listed as +wins −losses =draws as of August 4, 2013.)[18]
Players who have been Undisputed Classical World Champions in boldface

Notable games

  • Fabiano Caruana – Emanuel Berg, Dresden Olympiads 2008, French Defence C08
  • Fabiano Caruana – Francisco Vallejo-Pons, Pamplona 2008, Sicilian Najdorf B90
  • Artur Yusupov – Fabiano Caruana, NH Chess tournament 2008, Slav Defence D10
  • Michael Adams – Fabiano Caruana, Dresden Olympiads 2008, French Defence C03
  • Sergey Karjakin – Fabiano Caruana, São Paulo / Bilbao Grand Slam Final 2012, Ruy Lopez C78


External links

  • Fabiano Caruana player profile and games at
  • Twitter
  • Template:Chessclub player
  • Fabiano Caruana at

Official links

  • FIDE

News items and interviews

  • Biography from
  • The New York Times, 2007-07-29
  • "A Chess Player's Challenge: Opponents His Own Age" The New York Times, 2003-05-17
  • 2007 Italian Championship interview from
  • "Fabulous Fabiano", by Macauley Peterson, Chess Life, January 2008, pp. 30–35.
  • Caruana: "L'anno prossimo voglio giocare nel torneo A!" PDF (7.72 MB) – by Janis Nisii, Torre & Cavallo Scacco!, February 2008, pp. 5–9 (in Italian)
Preceded by
Hikaru Nakamura
Youngest ever United States grandmaster
Succeeded by
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