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Joel Lautier
Number of games in database: 1,313
Years covered: 1986 to 2009
Last FIDE rating: 2658
Highest rating achieved in database: 2687

Overall record: +329 -253 =517 (53.5%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 214 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Nimzo Indian (83) 
    E32 E42 E54 E55 E58
 King's Indian (74) 
    E80 E94 E81 E92 E97
 Slav (50) 
    D11 D18 D10 D15 D12
 English, 1 c4 e5 (47) 
    A29 A21 A27 A22
 Queen's Indian (36) 
    E12 E15 E17
 Semi-Slav (35) 
    D47 D43 D45 D49 D46
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (199) 
    B47 B33 B30 B90 B46
 Queen's Indian (63) 
    E15 E12 E14
 Sicilian Taimanov (58) 
    B47 B46 B45 B48 B49
 Queen's Pawn Game (41) 
    D02 A46 D00 A45 E10
 Queen's Gambit Accepted (40) 
    D27 D20 D26 D21 D29
 Queen's Gambit Declined (40) 
    D31 D38 D30 D39 D37
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Kasparov vs Lautier, 1994 0-1
   Lautier vs Leko, 1997 1-0
   Lautier vs Bologan, 1999 1-0
   Topalov vs Lautier, 1998 0-1
   Lautier vs Karpov, 1993 1-0
   Lautier vs Anand, 1994 1-0
   Lautier vs I Sokolov, 1995 1-0
   Lautier vs Kasparov, 1997 1/2-1/2
   Lautier vs Timman, 1994 1-0
   Lautier vs Bologan, 1992 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament 2001/02 (2001)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   French Championship (2005)
   Karpov Poikovsky (2003)
   Las Palmas (1994)
   FIDE World Cup (2005)
   Grand Prix d'Echecs (2004)
   European Club Cup (2005)
   Linares (1994)
   French Championship (2006)
   10th Euwe Memorial (1996)
   3rd Aeroflot Festival (2004)
   European Club Cup (2003)
   37th Chess Olympiad (2006)
   European Club Cup (2004)
   Manila Interzonal (1990)
   European Team Championship (2005)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Lautier, the french Tal ! best games 1987-1995 by Yopo
   Lautier, the french Tal ! best games since 1996 by Yopo
   Biel 1991 by suenteus po 147
   Linares 1994 by suenteus po 147
   Horgen 1994 by suenteus po 147

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FIDE player card for Joel Lautier

(born Apr-12-1973, 46 years old) Canada (federation/nationality France)

[what is this?]

GM (1990) Joël Lautier became U20 World Youth Chess Champion in 1988 and won the French Chess Championship in 2004 and 2005. He is one of the founders of the ACP (Association of Professional Chessplayers) and was its president from 2004 to 2005.

Lautier was the second of Vladimir Kramnik during the Kasparov - Kramnik Classical World Championship Match (2000). He has also been married to Almira Fyodorovna Skripchenko but they are now divorced.

In 2006, Lautier gave up competitive chess to pursue a career in investment banking. Since 2009 he has been CEO of the Moscow-based investment banking firm RGG Capital.

References:, Wikipedia article: Joël Lautier,

Last updated: 2019-04-12 06:32:45

 page 1 of 53; games 1-25 of 1,313  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. E Birmingham vs Lautier  1-0471986Hamburg HSVB93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
2. Lautier vs H Wegner  1-0321986Hamburg HSVA57 Benko Gambit
3. G Nindl vs Lautier  0-1461986Lugano openE04 Catalan, Open, 5.Nf3
4. M Benoit vs Lautier  0-1401986FRA-chBA05 Reti Opening
5. J Corgeron vs Lautier  ½-½471986FRA-chBE67 King's Indian, Fianchetto
6. Lautier vs R Koch 0-1211986FRA-chBA57 Benko Gambit
7. Lautier vs B Dieu  ½-½551986FRA-chBA57 Benko Gambit
8. Lautier vs Degraeve 1-0361986FRA-chBE99 King's Indian, Orthodox, Taimanov
9. M Apicella vs Lautier ½-½451986FRA-chBB92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
10. Lautier vs Van Wely  ½-½521987Wch U18E99 King's Indian, Orthodox, Taimanov
11. Degraeve vs Lautier  0-1421987FRA-chB50 Sicilian
12. Lautier vs M Apicella  1-0451987FRA-chA54 Old Indian, Ukrainian Variation, 4.Nf3
13. G Andruet vs Lautier  1-0601987FRA-chA53 Old Indian
14. Lautier vs B Thebault  1-0211987FRA-chA67 Benoni, Taimanov Variation
15. Lautier vs J L Roos  1-0331987FRA-chA96 Dutch, Classical Variation
16. J P Boudre vs Lautier  0-1271987FRA-chB98 Sicilian, Najdorf
17. A Haik vs Lautier  1-0481987FRA-chE69 King's Indian, Fianchetto, Classical Main line
18. Lautier vs C Bernard  1-0501987FRA-chD85 Grunfeld
19. Adorjan vs Lautier ½-½211988Reykjavik OpenA29 English, Four Knights, Kingside Fianchetto
20. A Blees vs Lautier  0-1341988Paris-ch OpenE15 Queen's Indian
21. Kouatly vs Lautier  ½-½491988MarseilleA63 Benoni, Fianchetto, 9...Nbd7
22. Lautier vs O Renet 0-1111988MarseilleE48 Nimzo-Indian, 4.e3 O-O 5.Bd3 d5
23. Lautier vs G Andruet  1-0241988MarseilleA57 Benko Gambit
24. Lautier vs R Timmer  1-0541988Paris-ch OpenD86 Grunfeld, Exchange
25. V Priehoda vs Lautier  ½-½411988Paris-ch OpenC02 French, Advance
 page 1 of 53; games 1-25 of 1,313  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Lautier wins | Lautier loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3 OF 3 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: GM Joel Lautier: This one made me chuckle the most.

<A surgeon visits his patient, lying in bed:

'I've got good news and bad news, what shall I start with?' asks the doctor

'Please tell me the bad news first.' Says the patient.

'Well the operation failed horribly and we were forced to amputate both of your legs.'

'What good news could you possibly have after that?' asks the shocked and horrified patient.

'Well, the man in the next bed wants to buy your shoes!'>

Source: Interview with a Grandmaster

Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Does Moscow still have those "Afghanzi" guys running around, soldiers Riffed out after their adventure in Afghanistan, who hold up people who look rich? I don't know if I would want to be an investment banker in Moscow.
May-17-12  waustad: He's now living in Moscow and concentrating on business. He's announcing for the WCC broadcasts.
Premium Chessgames Member
  paulalbert: Joel is totally proficient in Russian, apparently able to pass himself off as a native Russian speaker. Born in Canada of a French father and Japanese mother, I don't know exactly how he developed such a high level of skill in the Russian language, but it's obviously very helpful if your business activities are in Russia.
Nov-09-13  Azazel11: Future World champion Joel Lautier !!!
Premium Chessgames Member
  HeMateMe: Was he once projected to be a super GM?
May-25-14  Mr 1100: Lautier seems to the be the only player I can find on - other than Kramnik, of course - to have a meaningful plus score against Kasparov in classical games...
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: Depends on the definition of 'meaningful': Gulko made +3 -1 =3 vs the great man in classical play.

May-25-14  Mr 1100: Cool, I didn't know about that one.

When I said "meaningful", I was excluding - for example - Kasparov's record against Murray Chandler - one of Chandler's wins against Kasparov was back in the '70's - before either of them was a grandmaster, and the other was a win in a "simultaneous" ("exhibition"?) game.

Apr-12-15  Howard: So what is Lautier doing nowadays for a living ? He retired from chess about 8-9 years ago, as I recall.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: He's heavily into banking:
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <Most strong players are completely self-centered…. They are blind to how other people feel or else simply don't care> - Joel Lautier.
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: <I can certainly say that playing chess too often with your husband or wife can lead to some problems> - Joel Lautier.
Apr-12-16  Howard: One of Lautier's most memorable games--beyond a doubt--was his last-round victory over Gurevich in the 1993 Biel interzonal.

It gave Lautier a place in the 1994 Candidates, plus it involved some deep preparation in a QGD.

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Joel Lautier.

Player of the Day.

Apr-12-16  diagonal: Happy birthday - and congratulations on his thirty years jubilee on international chess circuit this year:

Lautier first received attention in 1986 in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where at the age of 13 he won the Under-14 World Championship, ahead of Sofia Polgar and Judit Polgar.

Lautier also won the World Junior Chess Championship in 1988 in Adelaide, Australia, at age of 15, ahead of Ivanchuk.

Lautier was and still is the youngest player to have won that title (World Junior Chess Champion, inaugural edition in 1951, then biannually played, since 1974 as annual competition).

Picture from the European Chess Team Championship at Gothenburg (Swedish: Göteborg) in 2005: Joel Lautier (France, right) plays Ivan Sokolov (The Netherlands, left) as Senior Viktor Korchnoi (Switzerland, far left) looks on: <>

Apr-12-16  diagonal: PS: As mentioned in several postings above, Joel Lautier left professional chess in 2006. Lautier subsequently no longer classifies himself as a chess professional, but as a businessman working in Russia. He speaks perfectly fluent Russian (Source: Wikipedia)
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: <HeMateMe: Was he once projected to be a super GM?>

Lautier's peak was 1993-5 - he was ranked in the top 15 for much of this time once reaching #13. Some would define that as "super".

Apr-12-16  diagonal: <some would define that as "super"> me too!

Of course, it's always a question of definition (not only about ELO rating / ranking, but also a matter of tournament wins, or eg. Candidate's status, results in matches and team events).

Lautier has won about ten major international tournaments (not listing Zonals, national or mostly minor tournaments): <Polanica Zdroj (Rubinstein Memorial) 1991, Pamplona 3rd Magistral 1992/1993 (surpassing amongst others top-seeded Kramnik), Amsterdam (Euwe Memorial) 1995 (clear first and undefeated, ahead of Kasparov, 3. Topalov, 4. Piket, prestigious Mini-Tournament of four elite players), Ubeda, Spain 1997 (a stand-alone supertournament, today rather forgotten: <>, probably Lautiers greatest tournament achievement), Malmö (Sigeman & Co.) 1998 (first shared), Harplinge GM, Sweden 1998, Enghien-les-Bains 1999, Las Palmas Open 2000, Poikovsky (Karpov Tournament) 2003 (joint with Svidler), Odessa, Pivdenny Bank (Geller Memorial), Rapid 2006>.

On the other hand, at the traditional Wijk aan Zee tournament, Lautier participated three times, but never finished on the podium. At Biel / Bienne GM (the swiss-german-french bilingual town is mostly inviting a player from France), he was invited multiple times between 1990 (Karpov outright) and 2001 (Korchnoi outright), but never won, neither did he at Dortmund, Tilburg or Linares.

Candidate status: At the Interzonal in Biel 1993 (the last ever held, it was a swiss system, 73 players), Joel Lautier qualified for the next stages as a Candidate, but lost the first round match in 1994 against Jan Timman with 3.5:4.5.

Certainly French best player on international chess circuit between approximately 1990 and 2005 (French National Champion in 2004 and 2005).

Best ELO rating 2687 in 2002, best ranking as =13th best world ranked player in 1995.

Lautier was quite a constant player in the top fifty to the top twenty for more than a decade, especially known for achieving a positive score in classical games against Garry Kasparov, 5½-4½ according to chessgames, all games played during Great Gazza's peak years.

Premium Chessgames Member
  eternaloptimist: Happy birthday to GM Lautier!
Sep-11-17  Arconax: <diagonal: He speaks perfectly fluent Russian (Source: Wikipedia)>

Indeed he does.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ChessHigherCat: <HeMateMe: Does Moscow still have those "Afghanzi" guys running around, soldiers Riffed out after their adventure in Afghanistan, who hold up people who look rich? I don't know if I would want to be an investment banker in Moscow.>

Putin's the one to worry about. I hope Joel didn't get screwed by him. You should read this book by Bill Browder, who was Russia's no. 1 foreign investor and was lucky to escape with his life:

Nov-18-17  Caissanist: Lautier gave an excellent two-part interview to Chessbase's Sagar Shah last year, covering his chess career and post-chess life:

Nov-18-17  john barleycorn: <caissanist> thanks for the links. enjoyed reading the articles very much.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Check It Out: I second jb’s comment. Definitely worth a read.
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