The news that 13th world champion Garry Kasparov has been training Magnus Carlsen broke today. This has been going on in secret for six months, including a two-week session in Croatia where Garry always takes his summer holidays. ChessBase has the most extensive report, with a few pics of them working in Croatia and a translation of the Norwegian article that released the story today. The ICC blog also has the news, though it shouldn't be only in the future tense as they've been working together for a while now.
Since it was translated into Norwegian and then back into English there, which resulted in a few tweaks, here's Garry's original statement:
At just 18 years of age, Magnus Carlsen is already close to the peak of the chess world. In six months of working with Magnus I have seen in him many of the qualities of the great champions. With so many victories coming relatively easily to his immense talent and fighting spirit, the final crucial ingredient of relentless work will guarantee his place at the summit.
Garry's appreciation for Carlsen's attitude was as much a factor in this as his "talent," which, despite its inevitable use and overuse, is a bit too abstract a term for Kasparov's view of what makes up a great chessplayer. From Carlsen's earliest days on the world stage Garry was impressed with the way he fought at the board and how he was, seemingly simply enough, "a winner." That is, he really wanted to win not just games, but events, instead of thinking about rating points or being intimidated by his opponents and his surroundings.
There will be much more about this coming out in the coming days, and then of course more when Garry goes to Oslo on the 15th. If you have some questions for him on the topic, feel free to post them below.
More importantly, Garry and fam came to Brooklyn on Saturday and he was a big hit at the Brooklyn Public Library. Here's a shot of him in front of the building giving the TV crew some footage of him walking up to the camera.
After that he was just another dad pushing a stroller in Park Slope, the kid capital of the US, where we live. Stroller traffic is worse than car traffic in our neighborhood.
I'll toss in here that a December Paris series similar to the Valencia format has been added to the Kasparov-Karpov 25th anniversary tour. Not sure if it's all signed yet, will confirm. Still hoping for one more in Moscow as well, probably in 2010. [Paris not signed yet, says Garry. But sounds pretty solid.]