Last month I announced a new event for Project 30, with the exciting news that WFM Sarah Hegarty would be coming to Teesside for a simultaneous display at one of our schools.
Today saw the plan come to fruition, when Sarah very kindly gave up a lot of her very valuable time to travel all the way from Cheshire to Redcar's Ings Farm Primary School.
Ings Farm were one of the very first schools to sign up to the CSC back in 2010.
In a simultaneous display, the star player is up against a large group of players and has to move instantly upon reaching each board. This should dilute the chess strength of the star, thus giving the group more chances.
20 of Ings Farm's most experienced assembled inside a square of tables, ready to test their strength against an experienced England International and former British Champion.
The children were very excited to have the opportunity to play against a genuine chess V.I.P. and some of the games were reasonably close for a while. However, every time Sarah finished off another game the circuits became faster and the children had to think and move more quickly.
Sarah then wrapped up the remaining games with a flurry of fine checkmates, giving her a fabulous score of 20 wins from 20 games.
Charlie Peirson lasted the longest and Sarah also singled out Lola Thomas as having played the best game of the day.
At one point Lola had engineered a clever skewer against Sarah's queen and rook, but that hadn't stopped Sarah whipping up a devastating checkmate attack some moves later.
It was a very memorable and enjoyable day.
Many thanks to Ings Farm Primary School, who allowed me to hijack the entire morning KS2 timetable and thank you to the children for portraying our school and area in a very positive light.
Most thanks must go to Sarah, of course, who gave up her day to visit Teesside and will undoubtedly prove to be a perfect role model and fine inspiration to our juniors for many years to come.