Monday, November 2, 2009

Who was Fred Reinfeld?

Fred Reinfeld was a New York State chess champion in the 1930's.  While he was a very strong master, he was far weaker than contemporaries like Reuben Fine and Samuel Reshevsky.  He wrote chess books for a living: some are frankly not very good.

When I was young, my friends and I would look down our nose at Reinfeld's books.  Don't be a chess snob like me: practice your fundamentals!

Black to play and win 

Here's another example from 1001 Chess Sacrifices and Combinations.  The first couple moves are not hard....


Frederick said...

1...Bc1+ 2.Kg4 h5+ 3.Kh4 Be3! whereupon one writes one of those Infortant-style thingies (circle with a dot in the middle, IIRC) 4.g4 Bf2#

Bill Brock said...

The circle with a dot in the middle is (for some strange reason) the international journal Chess Informant's symbol for zugzwang.

Frederick said...

Far weaker? I don't know if it's a representative sample, but I'd be happy with a +2=2-0 score against Reshevsky: More generally, see From what I wrote in Wikipedia:

Reinfeld was ranked sixth in the country on the first rating list issued by the United States Chess Federation in 1950, after Reuben Fine, Samuel Reshevsky, Alexander Kevitz, Arthur Dake, and Albert Simonson. As of July 31, 1950, the top ratings were Fine (2817), Reshevsky (2770), Kevitz (2610), Dake (2598), Simonson (2596), Reinfeld (2593), Arnold Denker (2575), Isaac Kashdan (2574), I. A. Horowitz (2558), and Abraham Kupchik (2538). Chess Life, November 20, 1950, p. 3. Reinfeld won the 1933 New York State Championship, finishing all eleven rounds undefeated, ahead of Fine, Anthony Santasiere, and Arnold Denker. During his career, he won games against grandmasters Reshevsky (twice), Fine, Frank Marshall, and Denker, and drew against world champion Alexander Alekhine.