2024 Wild Card Open

The Pittsburgh Chess Club is proud to host our 30th Annual Wild Card Open.

Tournament Registration Links


In order for a tournament to be rated by US Chess, the federation requires that all participants in the tournament have an active (not expired) US Chess membership. Please ensure your membership is active before arriving at the tournament to avoid delays.

Schedule | Format | Prizes | Eligibility | Byes

Rules | Fair Play | Contact | Registration Details | Advance Entries

Schedule and Location

Tournament Rounds: Tuesdays, January 9 - February 13, 2024. Rounds start at 6:30PM.

Location: The Pittsburgh Chess Club, 5869 Forbes Ave., 2nd Fl, Pittsburgh, PA 15217

Tournament Format

Format: 6 Round Swiss System, one game every Tuesday
Time Control: Game/90 delay 5 (Each player starts with 90 minutes on their clock and there is a 5 second delay per move).
Sections: There is one Open section.

  • Pairings will be based on the US Chess rating supplement issued during the month of the tournament (see Ratings below). The highest rating will be used for pairing purposes.
  • Pairings Preview. Normally, pairings for the week will be posted online (pairings page) by Monday noon. These pairings should be considered tentative until 4:30pm Tuesday, at which time the pairings should be considered official (ie. officially printed and affixed to the pairings wall in the club).
  • All players who have not withdrawn or requested a BYE prior to officially posted pairings will be expected to play in that round regardless of their results. A player will be forfeited if he or she does not arrive at his or her assigned board to play a scheduled game before the expiration of the default time, which is the lesser of the time control or 60 minutes. Please see Commitment to play all rounds, below.

Ratings: All players must be current USCF members to play in this tournament series. Players can purchase or renew USCF memberships in conjunction with entering the tournament. To see membership options, details and dues or to purchase or renew memberships directly online, click here: https://new.uschess.org/become-member. Membership dues are non-refundable even if the tournament is cancelled or the player withdraws. All games will be USCF-rated. Official USCF ratings from the latest supplement will apply as listed below in order of priority:

  • USCF Regular
  • USCF Quick
  • USCF Online-Regular
  • USCF Online-Quick

The Pittsburgh Chess Club reserves the right to assign any player to a higher-rated section based on the player’s rating history. Any player who does not have any of the USCF ratings listed above will be entered as an unrated player.


  • $850 prize fund based on 32 players –“Poker Hands” prize structure!
    • Each week, players draw cards from a standard 52-card deck, based on their results. A win gets two cards. A draw gets one card. An upset win or draw of more than 100 points gets one bonus card! At the end of the tournament, each player’s best possible five-card hand is determined from the cards they have accumulated. The first place prize goes to the player with the best score using standard tournament scoring. The next five prizes go to the players with the best poker hands! Standard hand rankings apply, except that five-of-a-kind is the best possible hand.
    • Players with full-point byes are eligible to draw two cards, and players with half-point byes are eligible to draw one card.
    • 1st place - $225, 2nd place - $175, 3rd place - $150, 4th place - $125, 5th place - $100, 6th place - $75
    • Largest upset win (if at least 200 points) gets free entry to any future 2022-2023 PCC tournament! (up to $50)
    • Custom Poker Plaques for top 6 places
    • Custom Poker Chips for all participants
    • No winner shall receive more than one cash award (Rule 32B1)
    • Prizes will paid on-site by check. If a prize is not collected, it will be transferred to winner’s designated PayPal account (if provided)
    • Per IRS rules anyone with a cumulative $600+ prizes in any calendar year will need to fill out a W9 and The Pittsburgh Chess Club will be providing a 1099 form.



  • Byes are available for players in any round in case they can't participate but would like to stay in the tournament.
  • A request for up to two ½-point byes will be accepted under the following conditions:
    • Half-point byes for rounds 1, 2, & 3 must be requested at least 2-hours prior to the round start time (ie. 4:30PM).
    • Half-point byes for rounds 4, 5 and 6 must be requested before the start of round 3.
    • Bye requests after the start of round 3 will be considered 0-point byes.
    • Only one ½-point bye allowed in either round 5 or 6, not both.
    • All byes are irrevocable
    • A player may cancel an irrevocable half-point bye under the condition that if the player wins, the result will be treated as a draw for prize purposes.
  • Registered Byes will be posted in the weekly pairings page online.
  • Please see Commitment to play all rounds, below.

Tournament Rules

Fair Play

  • Use of computer chess engines, databases, chess books, magazines, written notes and any other form of external assistance while playing is strictly prohibited. Assistance from other players is also prohibited and will result in disqualification.
  • The electronic score keeping devices, ChessNoteR and eNotate, cannot be used at this tournament


Please email [email protected] if you have any questions. Or call (412) 421-1881.


  • Advance entry is encouraged to be assured of a place in the tournament.
  • PCC Member Advance Entry Fee: $40
  • Non-Member Advance Entry Fee: $50
  • On-Site Entry Fee: $55
  • There is no advanced entry fee for FIDE titled & USCF titled players, NM and higher. Please use promo code "TITLED-ACC23" at checkout.
  • On-site registration will be available before rounds 1 & 2, 5:45PM-6:15PM.
  • Late registrants who register after 6:15 PM may have to take a half point bye in the subsequent round.
  • Administrative Fee: $10 for all cancellations & refunds. Refunds must be requested before the start of your first paired round..
  • Commitment to play paired rounds: All players who have not withdrawn prior to the start of each round pairing will be paired and expected to play in that round -regardless of their results. A player will be forfeited if he or she does not arrive at his or her assigned board to play a scheduled game before the expiration of the default time, which is the lesser of the time control or 60 minutes. Once a forfeit occurs, the player is automatically withdrawn from the event and they will be charged a forfeit penalty fee.
  • Forfeit penalty fee: $10

Advance Entries


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