The recent FIDE rating charts show the hard charging Veselin Topalov
catching Anand for the top active-player rating spot. The cream rises
to the top and so the top players. The cream always
rises to the Topalov. Veselin started his rise during the 2004 FIDE KO in
Libya. Topalov scored 8 wins out of 9 games in the first few rounds. The
FIDE KO winner, Rustam Kasimdzhanov, eventually ousted him in the 2nd to
last round during the rapid phase of the match.
Topalov also started quickly at 2005 Corus by stunning the world champion
Vladimir Kramnik in 20 short moves. This stunning victory occurred with
Topalov playing from the black side of the board. Topalov was in the lead until round
10, when he blundered to Judith Polgar. Topalov hung tough and finished in
third place behind Leko and Anand.
Veselin Topalov could also be know as the last man to defeat the
retiring Garry Kasparov, this victory happened during 2005 Linares. A hard
charging, Topalov tied Kasparov for first place in the last round by
defeating Kasparov in the last game. Kasparov took home the first prize due
to tiebreakers. Veselin Topalov also defeated Adams, Kasimdzhanov and
Topalov finish in the middle of the pack at 2005 Amber combined, but
rapid might not be his strength. However in front of his hometown fans at
Mtel in Sofia Bulgaria, Topalov defeated Anand, Kramnik, Ponomariov and
Adams to take first place by a full point over Anand. Topalov is certainly
looking to pick up a Chess Oscar for his great results in 2005. Topalov is
also the favorite to win the 2005 International White Knight MVP Award. With
a 2788 rating, Topalov is also poised to break the 2800 plateau. Only
Kramnik and Kasparov have broken that magical plateau. Topalov's recent
victories over Leko, Anand, Kramnik and Kasparov proves the theory that "the
cream rises to the Topalov."
Another note worthy rating change was that the 14th World Champion
Vladimir Kramnik continues to fall in the rating charts. Vassily Ivanchuk
dropped Kramnik to the sixth rating spot, behind Kasparov, Anand, Topalov,
Leko and Ivanchuk.