Hikaru Nakamura is a five-time U.S. Champion and reigning World Fischer Random Chess Champion. In addition to his many notable tournament victories, including the 2011 Tata Steel Masters, 2022 FIDE Grand Prix, and 2023 Norway Chess, Nakamura is also known for his blitz and rapid skills, having won five straight Chess.com Speed Chess Championships, as well as a number of elite online events. Nakamura has represented the U.S. in five chess olympiads, earning a team gold and two bronze medals.
Fabiano Caruana is an Italian-American grandmaster and two-time U.S. Champion. Along with achieving the third highest FIDE rating of all-time (2844), Caruana’s best accomplishments include winning the 2014 Sinquefield Cup with an incredible 8.5/10 score, as well as winning the 2018 Candidates Tournament which earned him the right to challenge Magnus Carlsen in the 2018 FIDE World Championship Match. In addition to his many tournament victories, which includes the 2018 Grenke Chess Classic, 2018 Norway Chess, and 2022 American Cup, Caruana also led the United States to a victory in the 2016 Chess Olympiad, and the team silver medal in the 2018 Chess Olympiad.
Wesley So is a three-time U.S. Champion and two-time Grand Chess Tour champion. In 2008, he became the then youngest player ever to cross a FIDE rating of 2600, and in 2019 he became the World Fischer Random Chess Champion. So’s many tournament accomplishments include winning both individual and team gold while representing the U.S. in the 2016 Chess Olympiad, as well as winning the 2016 Sinquefield Cup, 2016 London Chess Classic, and the 2017 Tata Steel Masters. So has a peak FIDE rating of 2822, making him the fifth highest rated player in history.
Levon Aronian is an Armenian-American Grandmaster and a former blitz, rapid and Chess960 World Champion. After earning the grandmaster title at age 17, Aronian joined the world’s elite a few years later, eventually reaching a peak FIDE rating of 2830, the fourth highest ever recorded in history. Aronian’s notable tournament achievements include winning the 2005 & 2017 FIDE World Cup, the 2006 & 2007 Chess960 World Championship, the 2008 World Rapid Championship, and the 2009 World Blitz Championship. Originally from Yerevan, Aronian famously led Armenia to three gold medal victories in the 2006, 2008, and 2012 Chess Olympiads. In 2021, Aronian switched federations to represent the United States.
Leinier Dominguez is a Cuban-American grandmaster and former World Blitz Champion (2008). He is a five-time Cuban champion and the highest rated Cuban player of all time. After switching federations to the United States in 2018, Dominguez has had a string of notable results, including a third place finish in the 2022 American Cup, as well as second place finishes in the 2019 and 2022 U.S. Championships. Dominguez was also the winner of the 2021 Champions Showdown.
Jeffery Xiong is an American grandmaster and former World Junior Champion (2016). He earned the Grandmaster title at the age of 14, and crossed the 2700 FIDE mark in 2018 when he was just 18 years old. Xiong has won numerous strong events, including the 2016 Capablanca Memorial B Group, the 2016 U.S. Junior Championship, as well as the 2018 and 2019 Saint Louis Spring Classic. In 2019, Xiong had an excellent run in the FIDE World Cup, defeating Lysyj, Maghsoodloo, Giri, and Duda to reach the quarterfinals.
Ray Robson is an American grandmaster and former U.S. prodigy. He earned the Grandmaster title in 2009 at the age of 14, making him the youngest U.S. grandmaster in history at the time. Robson’s scholastic career highlights include winning seven U.S. national titles, earning multiple silver medals in the World Youth Championship, and becoming the 2009 U.S. Junior Champion. Robson also finished second in the 2014 Millionaire Chess Open, as well as second in the 2015 U.S. Championship. Born in Guam, Robson lived in Florida for most of his childhood before attending Webster University in 2012 under a chess scholarship. One of the most recent members of the “2700” club, Robson crossed the FIDE rating barrier for the first time in November 2022.
Sam Sevian is a former U.S. prodigy and previous U12 World Champion. He became a Grandmaster at the age of 13 years and 10 months, breaking the record for the youngest American player to earn the GM title. Sevian also broke records on his way to becoming the youngest Expert, National Master, and International Master in U.S. chess history. Sevian’s tournament victories include the 2017 American Continental Chess Championship, the 2022 Saint Louis Spring Classic, and the 2023 Stepan Avagyan Memorial. In April 2022, Sevian crossed 2700 FIDE for the first time in his career.
Sam Shankland is a former U.S. Champion (2018) and World Junior Champion (2010). Originally from Berkeley, California, Shankland is a multiple-time U.S. Olympic team member, winning an individual gold medal in 2014 and a historic team gold in 2016. In 2021, Shankland reached the quarterfinals of the FIDE World Cup, qualifying him for the 2022 FIDE Grand Prix. Shankland has written three books thus far: Small Steps to Giant Improvement, Small Steps 2 Success, and the recent Grandmaster Training Camp 1 - Calculation!, published in February 2023. Shankland’s peak FIDE rating is 2731, which he earned in February 2019.
Garry Kasparov is a legendary grandmaster and former World Champion originally from Baku, Azerbaijan. He held the title from 1985-2000 and was the World No. 1 ranked player until his retirement in 2005. Kasparov also earned the highest FIDE rating in history (2851) until he was surpassed by Magnus Carlsen in 2013. Considered by many to be the greatest of all time, Kasparov won virtually every top tournament in the chess world, including Wijk aan Zee, Linares, and many more super-tournaments. While representing the Soviet Union and then Russia in eight chess olympiads, Kasparov earned a total of nineteen medals, including the team gold in all eight olympiads he competed in.