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John Alan Grefe
Number of games in database: 141
Years covered: 1969 to 1998
Last FIDE rating: 2316
Highest rating achieved in database: 2400

Overall record: +49 -46 =46 (51.1%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (23) 
    B50 B22 B84 B77 B42
 Ruy Lopez (9) 
    C69 C73 C60 C91 C80
 French Defense (7) 
    C18 C02 C16 C12 C17
 Caro-Kann (5) 
    B10 B11 B18
 French Winawer (5) 
    C18 C16 C17
 Sicilian Najdorf (5) 
    B94 B97 B98 B99 B92
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (15) 
    B46 B82 B93 B83 B40
 King's Indian (11) 
    E99 E97 E92 E81 E73
 Queen's Pawn Game (5) 
    A46 D01 A41 A45
 Modern Benoni (5) 
    A56 A73 A70
 English (5) 
    A15 A10
 Sicilian Scheveningen (4) 
    B82 B83 B85 B81
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   J A Grefe vs Browne, 1973 1-0
   J A Grefe vs Denker, 1979 1-0
   J A Grefe vs A Karklins, 1973 1-0
   J A Grefe vs Najdorf, 1976 1-0
   Reshevsky vs J A Grefe, 1977 0-1
   L Christiansen vs J A Grefe, 1977 1/2-1/2
   J A Grefe vs L C Gilden, 1974 1-0
   J A Grefe vs Tarjan, 1973 1/2-1/2
   J A Grefe vs S Rubin, 1971 1-0
   J A Grefe vs Tarjan, 1971 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   US Championship (1973)
   Lone Pine (1971)
   Lone Pine (1973)
   US Championship (1974)
   Lone Pine (1976)
   Lone Pine (1977)
   Lone Pine (1979)
   Lone Pine (1981)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   US Championship 1974 by Phony Benoni
   US Championship 1973 by Phony Benoni

Search Sacrifice Explorer for John Alan Grefe
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(born Sep-06-1947, died Dec-22-2013, 66 years old) United States of America

[what is this?]
John Grefe was born in Hoboken, New Jersey, USA. He and Lubomir Kavalek were co-winners of the 1973 U.S. Championship. FIDE awarded him the title of International Master in 1975. He died in San Francisco on December 22, 2013.

Wikipedia article: John Grefe

 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 141  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. L Williams vs J A Grefe 0-123196970th US OpenA01 Nimzovich-Larsen Attack
2. J A Grefe vs David Presser 1-059196970th US OpenB28 Sicilian, O'Kelly Variation
3. K Fitzgerald vs J A Grefe  0-125196970th US OpenA07 King's Indian Attack
4. J A Grefe vs Popovych  0-132196970th US OpenB94 Sicilian, Najdorf
5. J A Grefe vs E Pruner  ½-½23196970th US OpenB42 Sicilian, Kan
6. J Dunning vs J A Grefe  0-126196970th US OpenA41 Queen's Pawn Game (with ...d6)
7. S Matera vs J A Grefe  ½-½30196970th US OpenB06 Robatsch
8. J A Grefe vs W Shipman  0-152196970th US OpenC60 Ruy Lopez
9. J L Watson vs J A Grefe  0-140196970th US OpenB06 Robatsch
10. J A Grefe vs Tarjan 1-0301971National opC73 Ruy Lopez, Modern Steinitz Defense
11. J A Grefe vs S Rubin 1-0281971Lone PineA07 King's Indian Attack
12. J Loftsson vs J A Grefe  0-1311971Lone PineA56 Benoni Defense
13. J A Grefe vs A Karklins  1-0251971Lone PineA00 Uncommon Opening
14. J A Grefe vs Nunn  0-1251973London-BB06 Robatsch
15. Kevitz vs J A Grefe  0-14019731st World OpenA04 Reti Opening
16. J A Grefe vs W Heidenfeld 1-0391973London-BA07 King's Indian Attack
17. P Brandts vs J A Grefe  0-1471973Lone PineA56 Benoni Defense
18. J A Grefe vs R Ervin  1-0461973Lone PineC12 French, McCutcheon
19. Larry Evans vs J A Grefe 0-1351973Lone PineA10 English
20. J A Grefe vs A Karklins 1-0301973US ChampionshipC69 Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation
21. G F Kane vs J A Grefe  ½-½401973US ChampionshipA56 Benoni Defense
22. J A Grefe vs L C Gilden  1-0251973US ChampionshipB97 Sicilian, Najdorf
23. Bisguier vs J A Grefe  0-1361973US ChampionshipA42 Modern Defense, Averbakh System
24. J A Grefe vs Mednis 1-0891973US ChampionshipC18 French, Winawer
25. W Martz vs J A Grefe  0-1551973US ChampionshipA46 Queen's Pawn Game
 page 1 of 6; games 1-25 of 141  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Grefe wins | Grefe loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Dec-14-04  kostich in time: What ever happened to Grefe? He tied for first in a US championship in the early seventies, and wrote a book entitled ( I think) the best Chess books and how to use them. he was alsos apparently a follower of the "perfect master', the Guru Maharajah Ji ( No comment)
Premium Chessgames Member
  Benzol: John Alan Grefe
Born 6th September 1947 in Hoboken, New York
Awarded the IM title in 1975 he was also joint US champion in 1973.
Premium Chessgames Member
  pazzed paun: Grefe writes a chess colum for the Los Angeles Times
Premium Chessgames Member
  Eric Schiller: <pazzedd>Don't you mean Jack Peters? John Grefe is up here in the Bay Area, he drops by tournaments but doesn't play much. I'm trying to get him to play the SF Masters in May.
Premium Chessgames Member
  pazzed paun: <Eric Schiller> you are right, my mistake. I saw John Grefe at the 1995 San Francisco International tournament. I told him I really like his book "The 35 best chess books" and when was he going to right the followup? He looked stunned. He is a great chesswriter.
Apr-05-05  Dick Brain: John Grefe started playing tournament chess at 15 and won his first tournament: his first USCF rating was 2131 (!).
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: Here's Grefe's stunning upset over the great Walter Browne in the US championship 1973

[Event "USA ch"]
[Site "Moranwelz"]
[Date "1973.??.??"]
[Round "7"]
[White "Grefe, John A"]
[Black "Browne, Walter S"]
[TimeControl "-"]
[Result "1-0"]
[ECO "B99"]
[WhiteCountry "USA"]
[BlackCountry "USA"]

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 a6 6.Bg5 e6 7.f4 Be7 8.Qf3 h6 9.Bh4 Qc7 10.0-0-0 Nbd7 11.Be2 Rb8 12.Qg3 Rg8 13.Rhf1 g5 14.fxg5 Ne5 15.Nf3 b5 16.Nxe5 b4 17.Nxf7 bxc3 18.gxf6 Rxg3 19.fxe7 Rg5 20.Bxg5 hxg5 21.Nxd6+ 1-0

Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: Too bad he went a bit downhill from 1973. By the way he was playing, he could have easily been a solid GM.
Premium Chessgames Member
  pazzed paun: <TheAlchemist> do you really "need" the GM title if you win the U.S. championship the first time you play?
Premium Chessgames Member
  TheAlchemist: <pazzed paun> I guess not :) , but FIDE... you know, the norms etc. :) Grefe has certainly proven his worth in 1973, but as I said, he went a bit downhill from then, I don't know why. A mystery... like a shooting star... coming out of the blue, only to fade away into nothingness... well, almost. God, that was too pathetic :)
Apr-07-05  Champ Supernova: This guy is a hippy who has been homeless for a long time.
May-28-05  DutchDunce: My one memory of Grefe was when he was playing chess at the Student Union at UC Berkeley, circa '91. He was a grey-haired fellow, mustache, baseball cap. Someone walked up to him and said "How's it going John? Killing everyone?" To which he replied calmly, "Well, so far so good." LOL
May-28-05  WMD: Hey, maaaaan, the chess pieces are sooooo heavy.
Premium Chessgames Member
  pazzed paun: Is there a way to get some of his chess
articles republished? respecting copyrights and getting him paid for them and all that stuff? He wrote some good st5uff about chessthinking and move selection.
May-29-05  Caissanist: He certainly would have been a solid GM had the norm rules been the same then as today. Back in the seventies, you couldn't get a title norm in national championships or open swiss events, which were where he scored his best results.

I was amused to see an interview he gave after co-winning the championship ( Although the top three US players of the day (Fischer, Byrne, Reshevsky) did not participate, he wanted it made clear that there was quite a strong field, since (out of fourteen participants) "five. . . are international grandmasters and one is an international master." Times have changed a bit since then.

May-29-05  Caissanist: Sad to see that he's homeless, though not really surprising. Does anyone know if he still tries to hustle games in the Bay Area, as mentioned in Dutch's anecdote above?

Premium Chessgames Member
  pazzed paun: I HAVE seen his name in the U.S. Chess federation quick play list-so maybe he is playing
Sep-28-05  Caissanist: Grefe is currently listed as an instructor at "Success Chess Schools" in Fremont, California.
Oct-16-05  joddle: I recently played John Grefe at Success Chess Schools in a simultaneous exhibition:

Derek O'Connor(me)-John Grefe

1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 e6 4.Nc3 exd5 5.cxd5 Bd6 6.Bg5 Bc7 7.d6 Ba5 8.e4 0-0 9.e5 Re8 10.f4 h6 11.Bxf6 Qxf6 12.Nh3 Qg6 13.Qf3 Qc2 14.Bc4 Qxb2 15.0-0 Qxc3 16.Bxf7+ Kf8 17.Qh5 Re6 18.Qf5 (I think Ng5 should have won) Rf6 19.exf6 Kxf7 20.fxg7+ Kxg7 21.Qg4+ Kh7 22. Qf5+ Kg7 23.Qg4+ Kh7 24. Qf5+ 1/2-1/2

Jan-31-06  cantdropwontstop: 'Can a cherry picker win the U.S.
Championship?' (John Grefe - C.L. -'73 or '74).
Jan-31-06  Fan of Leko: John Grefe gave everything to his Guru and his brain slowly turned to jello. The Guru rides in a Rolls-Royce while his worshippers live in vans or cardboard boxes.
Sep-06-06  BIDMONFA: John A Grefe


Sep-05-07  savagerules: I swear that Grefe guy bears a resemblance to some guy who was always in airports selling flowers and chanting Hare Krishna a couple decades ago. I bet the guru he worshipped is living it up in a mansion with the earnings from the beggars who were his followers.
May-06-08  Petrosianic: <I swear that Grefe guy bears a resemblance to some guy who was always in airports selling flowers and chanting Hare Krishna a couple decades ago.>

Yeah, Chessgames has a sense of humor, referring to him as "joint US Champion". (Yuck, yuck).

But I saw a recent picture of him a few years ago and he seemed to have ditched the hippy look. (Not sure about his devotion to Prem Wawat, formerly Maharajah Ji, who's still in the Transcendental Dissertation business).

<cantdropwontstop> <'Can a cherry picker win the U.S. Championship?' (John Grefe - C.L. -'73 or '74).>

Actually, that's the article he wrote about the 1977 Championship, his last one. But I think it was apple picker (picky, picky... pun intended).

Apr-25-09  Dredge Rivers: Good Grefe!
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