Grandmaster Ben Finegold learned the rules of chess at age 5 and received his first USCF rating at age 6. GM Finegold's first major tournament win came in 1989 when he finished in a tie for first-place at the U.S. Junior Closed Championship. Also in 1989, Finegold scored his biggest victory to date with a win against Boris Gelfand at the Euwe Memorial tournament in Amsterdam, Holland. He obtained his first IM norm at the event, gained 40 FIDE points and eventually earned the title of International Master in 1990. In 1991, Finegold won his first major international, Swiss-paired tournament in Antwerp, Belgium. From 1988 to 1992, Finegold lived in Brussels, Belgium. He returned to the U.S. in 1992 and, in 1993, he was awarded the Samford Chess Fellowship. In 1994, Finegold finished in a six-way tie for first place at the U.S Open in Chicago, and then in 2002 he finished in a first-place tie with eight players at the World Open in Philadelphia where he secured his first GM norm. He won the Chicago Spring Invitational in 2005 to earn his second GM norm, and then achieved his third GM norm at the 2009 Spice Cup Chess Festival in Lubbock, Texas.