is a Chess Grandmaster of Chinese – Filipino descent. Born in the Philippines on October 9th 1993, he was only six, when he learned the movement of chess pieces across a board. After memorizing them, chess set in hand, he explored the streets of his neighborhood daring people to play with him. At nine years old he began to compete in local, junior chess tournaments. His first major tournament win was taking 1st place at the 2003 Philippine National Chess Championships for the under 10 age group.
So, was awarded his first GM norm at the Offene Internationale Bayerische Schach Meisterschaft, in Bad Wiessee, Germany. He acquired his second GM norm in the 2007 U-20 World Junior Chess Championship in Yerevan, Armenia, and capped his year by earning his third GM norm at the 3rd Prospero Pichay Cup International Open in the Philippines. At the age of fourteen years, one month and twenty eight days, FIDE awarded him the title of Grandmaster, making him the ninth youngest chess grandmaster in history. He was then ranked strongest player in the world under sixteen years old.
In 2006 at the age of twelve years and ten months he became the youngest ever Filipino International Master and the youngest member of the national men’s team to participate at the 37th Chess Olympiad in Turin, Italy.
In 2007, he went on to become the youngest National Junior Open Chess Champion and won the gold medal on board one, at the World Under16 Team Championships.
In 2008, he won the title in the Dubai Open Chess Championships, “The Sheikh Rashed Bin Hamdan Al Maktoum Cup”, in the United Arab Emirates, and set a record as the youngest winner in the 10-year history of the Cup.
In 2008, So was rated 2610 becoming the youngest player in the history of the game to break the 2600 Elo barrier, surpassing the record previously held by Magnus Carlsen.
In 2009, on the FIDE rating list, Wesley So was rated the world’s strongest chess player for his age level (players born in 1993 and later)
In 2011, he won the Philippine Chess Championship.
In 2013, he won five major tournaments: they included the Reykjavik Open, the Calgary International Chess Classic, the 17th edition of the Univé Chess Tournament and the World University Chess Championship. At the 27th Summer Universiade in Kazan, Russia, So also won a gold medal for the Philippines. It was the first gold medal for the country in the history of the tournament.
In 2014, he finished in a tie for 4th–6th places at the 2014 Tata Steel Chess Tournament, in Wijk aan Zee Holland.
In 2014, he won the 49th Capablanca Memorial tournament in Havana at his first attempt, finishing a clear point ahead of his competitors.
In 2014, he won first place at the ACP Golden Classic in Bergamo Italy.
In 2015, Wesley So launched his career as a full time professional chess player. He now plays for the United States. Please see complete biodata.