From Prodigy to Chess Legend, and Now, the Weissenhaus Freestyle Chess G.O.A.T. Challenge
“G.O.A.T”, Greatest of All Time. Already now, at 33, Magnus Carlsen is considered the best there ever was and probably ever will be. His titles and records are hard to count, his achievements off the board unparalleled. Magnus Carlsen not only dominates the sport of chess, he has led it from a dusty niche into the limelight.
Born Sven Magnus Øen Carlsen on November 30, 1990 in Tønsberg, Norway, Magnus showed exceptional mental gifts even as a toddler. At the age of five, he could name almost every country on the planet, its capital and the number of people living there. At twelve, he began to discover these countries. His parents had decided to school their children themselves for a year. They traveled from chess tournament to chess tournament with their highly gifted son.
Magnus Carlsen started playing chess at the age of eight. He improved rapidly. At the end of the trip around the world with his parents, he became a chess grandmaster at the age of 13, the third youngest in history. This first milestone marked only the beginning of a path lined with successes.
In 2010, Carlsen became the youngest player ever to climb to the top of the world rankings. He is still there in 2024. He became world champion in 2013. Likely, Carlsen would still be World Champion in 2024 if he hadn’t decided not to defend his title in 2023. In 2014, he won the World Blitz and Rapid Chess Championships. This made him the first player to hold three world championship titles at the same time, the “major” and the two “minor” ones.
Carlsen has yet to prove his outstanding class in one discipline. In 2019, the world federation FIDE organized its first World Chess960 Championship, and in 2023 the second after a break due to the pandemic. Carlsen took part both times and did not win.
Anyone who considers the 17-time World Champion’s unwavering desire for competition and success knows that this bothers him. Carlsen’s collection of victories has long been historic, but it is not complete.
Now the world’s best chess player is taking on a challenge that he has designed to suit him: In competition with the best possible rivals, he wants to triumph in the game that he sees as an important part of the future of chess. A victory in the WEISSENHAUS Freestyle Chess G.O.A.T. Challenge would answer the question of who is the best in chess960.
Carlsen’s ambition to develop the sport goes hand in hand with his desire for competition. Chess should become more attractive and accessible, more exciting and emotional. Chess should be given color, the characters and stories of the masters at the board should be part of the presentation. The WEISSENHAUS Freestyle Chess G.O.A.T. Challenge also serves this goal.
FIDE title: Grandmaster
World Champion: Magnus Carlsen won the Classical World Championship 2013 and defended his title four times, the last time in 2021.
World Rapid Chess Champion: Five-time World Rapid Chess Champion (2014-2016, 2019, 2022, 2023).
World Blitz Chess Champion: Seven-time World Blitz Chess Champion (2014-2015, 2017-2019, 2022, 2023).
Rating Record: Carlsen’s Elo rating of 2882 in May 2014 and August 2019 is the highest since the introduction of the Elo list in 1970.
World Number 1: Carlsen reached the top position of the FIDE World Ranking for the first time in January 2010 as the youngest player ever. He has been leading the list from 2011 until today.
Unbeatable: Carlsen holds the record for the longest unbeaten streak at the elite level in classical chess. From July 31, 2018, to October 10, 2020, he played 125 consecutive classical games without a loss. He won 42 and drew 83.