Justin Turner from Aspley Shines in Spanish Chess Scene

Justin Turner, originally from Aspley, has made a significant impact on the chess scene in Spain. He earned recognition as his club’s Most Valuable Player and has achieved notable success in recent tournaments.

Achievements in Valencia

Now playing for a club in Valencia in Spain, Justin was named the Most Valuable Player for his performance in the Valencia State 2nd Division. As the 7th-ranked member of the club’s A Team, he played a crucial role in keeping his team near the top of the division, narrowly missing promotion to the 1st Division. 

Justin moved to Spain in 2020 and dedicated himself to intensively studying chess during the COVID lockdown. He attended Aspley East State School and worked as a civil engineer in Brisbane before retraining as a Teacher of English as a Second Language, now makes a modest living by giving private English lessons in Valencia.

“Between the dozen tutorials each week, I can fit in the three hours daily chess-study that I need to do to compete at this level.”

Justin Turner
Photo Credit: Supplied

Chess Celebration in June

In June 2024, the Valencia City Council sponsored a chess celebration to mark the end of the school year. Justin was one of four club members who participated with 20 other players from various clubs, playing simultaneous games against about 350 junior players. Each senior player played against 12 to 15 juniors.

Justin performed well in the recent Under 2400 Rating chess tournament in Spain. With a rating of 1937, he won all his games against lower-rated players and drew two games against players rated above 2100. Of the 158 entrants, including 21 Masters across three categories, Justin was ranked 52nd and finished in 40th place. Despite a challenging final match against a Master rated 2325, where he lost after 3.5 hours, his overall performance is expected to increase his rating by about 20 points. Justin aims to reach a rating of 2000 by the end of the year.

Club Awards and Farewell Party

The club’s final party and the closing of the chess EEDD were held recently, with an awards ceremony in the conference room of the Petxina cultural and sports centre. The best boards of the interclubs 2024 received rewards, and all players took home a small souvenir of the season. Justin was recognised as the best board for Basil A.

Other notable players included Lucas Ainsa Jiménez, Pablo Sánchez Navarro, Héctor Valero Crespo, Ángel Del Campo Hernández, Marco Penadés Chuluunpurev, Magnus Larson, David Cortijo, and Theo Clark Sanchez. A special award was given to Héctor Sirit, with a farewell tribute to Nestor. After the event, attendees enjoyed a snack, including paella, in the chess room.

In August, Justin will travel with a team from his club to compete in tournaments in Poland.

Published 22-June-2024