SAINT LOUIS, Mo. — The Saint Louis Chess Club announced this week that Armenian Grandmaster (GM) Levon Aronian will relocate to Saint Louis, MO and represent the USA in future competitions. “I am sincerely proud to have had the honor of making a significant contribution to the greatest achievements of Armenian chess․ Clearly, it is impossible to reach world heights in chess without the huge amount of work done at home and through the support of my fellow countrymen. I truly appreciate the personal attention and support that I received from the third President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan for many years.”
The 38-year-old grandmaster first made a name for himself by winning the 1994 World Youth Chess Championship. Aronian went on to lead the Armenian national team to three Olympiad gold medals (2006, 2008, 2012) and one World Team Championship gold (2011). Throughout his career Aronian has amassed many individual victories as well, including the World Cup (2005, 2017), Linares (2006), Corus/Tata Steel (2008, 2011), Norway Chess (2017), Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz (2017, 2019) and the Sinquefield Cup (2015, 2018).
Aronian is also a world champion in three formats; he is a former Chess960 World Champion (2006, 2007), World Rapid Champion (2009), and World Blitz World Champion (2010).
“Levon played in our first-ever Sinquefield Cup in 2013. I’ve come to know him over the years to be a fierce competitor and true gentleman. He represents the best of our sport,” said Rex Sinquefield, co-founder of the Saint Louis Chess Club. “When he came to us with interest in moving to Saint Louis and representing the U.S., I could think of no one better. We welcome him with open arms.”
The Saint Louis Chess Club has become a second home to Aronian. After winning the 2019 Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz, he spoke fondly of his many visits to the Central West End. At the closing ceremony he remarked, “I love playing in the city of Saint Louis, where chess players are proud to be chess players and we’re loved, and that is mainly thanks to the Sinquefield family.”