Faustino Oro, the Messi of Argentine chess who dazzles the world at 10 years old

11/14/2023 at 11:29


The 10-year-old chess player has won his first International Master standard (with three standards the title is consolidated)

He has surpassed great geniuses in history such as Fischer, Kasparov or Magnus Carlsen in precocity.

The story of Faustino Oro has a high component of chance. It is not the classic story of a chess prodigy. Why ‘Fausti’ didn’t start playing at 4 or 5 years old. He sat at the board for the confinement of the pandemicin 2020. By then he was 7 years old… and at 8 he was already the highest ranked U-10 player in the world.

Covid ‘infected’ him with chess

His parents always warned that their son was different. From a very young age he was able to solve the Rubik’s cube in less than two minutes. But it was in 2020, His mother Lorena was tired of picking up things that the little boy threw at home with balls in the living room, when on the afternoon of May 20 his father Alejandro decided to create an account for him on the Chess.com platform and challenge him.

Alejandro had come to play chess at the club level. A passion that he inherited from his father, Don Luis, Faustino’s paternal grandfather, and a player with some recognition in Argentina. Faustino dedicated himself and his growth was dizzying. So much so that his grandfather Luis recommended Alejandro enroll him in the Torre Blanca Circle. There they placed themselves under the orders of maestro Jorge Rosito, who when he heard that he had a genius before him, he thought “another who believes he has a new Carlsen at home.”

But when he saw him play he was absorbed by Faustino’s ability. The boy began giving private lessons with Guillermo Llanos, then with Daniel Pérez and finally the Argentine Chess Federation (FADA) put at his disposal a group of coaches led by Rosito, and with other Argentine chess notables such as Leandro Perdomo, Roberto Servat or Mario Villanueva. “At first I didn’t like playing or taking classes, but then I got used to it and the game began to excite me,” the boy confessed.

Faustino Oro, the 10-year-old Argentine chess genius


Getting up early for chess geniuses

Last September, Oro achieved his first International Master standard in the Comodoro Rivadavia tournament (with three standards the title is consolidated). Faustino surpassed the great geniuses of history in precocity, such as Fischer, Kasparov about Magnus Carlsen. LA FIDE, the International Chess Federation, presented Fausti to the world with a message on the networks that read: “Incredible performance by Faustino Oro (2325), 9 years old.” The ELO score (individual rating system) of the Argentine genius, which has already risen from 2325 to 2377, was not reached by Carlsen until he was eleven years old.

Argentine Sub-8 and Pan American Sub-10 champion, Faustino has made it clear that His goal is to become the youngest grandmaster in chess history. And to do this he has until July 2024, when he will exceed 10 years, 9 months and 20 days, the age at which the American of Indian parents Abhimanyu Mishra achieved it in 2019 than in 2019.

Those who know him assume that his genius and determination will lead him to this. The boy’s winning gene causes him not to sign boards because “I play to win.” Many see in him the same character as Carlsenhis reference and the one he dreams of facing. Faustino, who turned 10 on October 14, had not read any book or treatise on openings, middlegames or endgames when he won at Comodoro. Today he dedicates seven hours a week to chess with masters, to which he adds a couple more daily playing on the internet.

Only son, fan of the series and irreducible fan of Vélez Sarsfield, Buenos Aires soccer team, ‘Fausti’ continues going down to the square below his house to hit balls with his friends. When he is at home he likes to listen to music on the radio with Lorena, his mother. And he always decides which tournament he will play next, because his father Alejandro believes that “it is essential that I continue to see it as a hobby that he enjoys.”

However, while at home they downplay Faustino’s genius, the Messi of chess is beginning to be on everyone’s lips. The last one to focus on the Argentine was the American Hikaru Nakamura, number 4 in the world ranking and successful streamer with more than two million followers. “Can the world’s youngest FIDE Master, aged 9, be the next world champion?”, he wondered. Many are sure of it.

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