VECO – Vol#8 The Caro-Kann Defense

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Learn How to Play the Caro-Kann Defense

ekaterina atalik caro kannThinking about taking up the Caro-Kann (1.e4 c6)? Or maybe you’re having trouble breaking down this rock-solid opening? Either way, this new VECO (Video Encyclopedia of Chess Openings) course will give you a ton of new ideas and insights into some of the most popular lines.

Your crack Caro-Kann team includes GM Damian Lemos, IMs Ekaterina Atalik and Robert Ris… showing you how to play both sides of:

  • The Advance variation (3.e5)
  • The Exchange Caro (3.exd5)
  • The Two Knights (2.Nf3 d5 3.Nc3)
  • The 5.Nxf6+ line

The Caro-Kann is a chess opening where Black often plays …c6 then …c5; where White can have pawns on f4, g4 and h4 by move 8; where Deep Blue sensationally crushed Kasparov in just 19 moves…

You get the idea.

Whichever side of the Caro-Kann you play (or intend to play), our new VECO course (+3 hours) will make sure you’re armed with a pro repertoire in these critical lines.

damian lemos caro kannAbout the Authors

GM Damian Lemos – Grandmaster from Argentina, with a peak rating of 2559 Elo. In his lessons, Damian works closely with students to first identify the flaws and weaknesses in their games so that they can be properly evaluated and corrected. By developing specifically-tailored training regimens for every one of his students, Grandmaster Lemos is able to achieve results that other chess coaches dream of.

IM Ekaterina Atalik – Russian-Turkish International Master. IM Atalik also holds the title of Woman Grandmaster (WGM). She won the European Youth Chess Championship in the under-16 girls’ section in the year of 1997. She also won the 7th European Women’s Chess Championship in Kuşadası, Turkey in April 2006. Atalik also won the Turkish women’s championship in 2008 and 2016. In January 2016, she took clear first place in the 15th Prague Open with an outstanding score of 8/9, a full point ahead of the nearest followers.

IM Robert Ris – Dutch International Master. Ris learned how to play chess from his father when he was eight years old, and started playing in SV Amstelveen. In 2002 he started playing for SC Utrecht, and, later, in other clubs. In the same year, he also won the Open Dutch Youth Chess Championship, which he had also won the D category (up to 12 years) in 1999. Ris has been an international chess coach since 2007. He was also part of the selection of Young Orange.

Some of the things you’ll see:

  • caro kann 1How to deal with the intimidating f4-g4-h4 phalanx that is getting played more and more often. Ekaterina explains how to break it up with a clever sac that lets Black start an aggressive attack.
  • Why an ancient line in the Exchange variation has been resurrected recently… and how to handle the often chaotic early skirmishes.
  • Pawn grabs – which are safe and which should you turn down? The tempting …dxe4 lets White set up a lethal battery on the long diagonal a1-h8 (diagram).
  • The deadly attack that took down Yasser Seirawan! One seemingly logical move allowed White to launch this devastating mating attack. Robert Ris reveals the hidden weakness of the move and how Black should play instead.

Is this course for me?

If you want a chess opening that’s easier to learn than the theory-rich Sicilian and doesn’t have the positional drawbacks of the French… switch to the Caro-Kann.

And if you’re an e4 player, this is one opening you need to understand.

Whichever side of the board you’re on, our new 3+ hour VECO course gives you the sharp moves and deep understanding you need to emerge victorious.

GM Damian Lemos, IM Ekaterina Atalik and IM Robert Ris take you through some of the most critical lines in the Caro, including the Two Knights, Advance, Exchange, and Nxf6+ variations.

They reveal new ideas, home preparation, tactical tricks and showcase instructive games to help make the info stick.

Don’t miss this opportunity to get some killer new strategies and attacks for both colors in the Caro-Kann!

What to expect from each lesson:

Caro-Kann Two Knights Variation with 3..Bg4 – IM Ekaterina Atalik

In this second lesson on the Two Knights Variation, IM Atalik looks at lines with 3..Bg4.

Caro-Kann Two Knights Variation with 3..Nf6 – IM Ekaterina Atalik

The Caro-Kann is a chess opening for Black that begins with 1.e4 c6. In the mainline, play continues with 2.d4 d5, however, in the last couple of years the Two Knights variation has increased in popularity, played by the likes of Nakamura, Nepomniachtchi and MVL: 2.Nc3 d5 3.Nf3.

In this lesson, International Master Ekaterina Atalik explores play from Black’s side, looking at lines with 3..Bg4 (and other move orders that transpose into the same structures), starting by analyzing a very instructive game.

How to Play Against the Caro-Kann – GM Damian Lemos

GM Damian Lemos explores an idea that avoids the mainline 2.d4 and instead looks to create a small advantage for White by using a sideline.

GM Lemos found this idea when he started looking for ways White can combat the Caro-Kann, and came across a number of games from the Super-GM Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. MVL played some lines with Nf3 and Nc3 instead of playing 2.d4, and although sometimes it can transpose back into the mainline, it offers White a little more flexibility.

Lemos explains MVLs moves, and how he developed his own idea for facing the Caro-Kann as White.

caro kann defense diagram

Caro-Kann with 5.Nxf6+ – IM Robert Ris

While it is true that the Caro-Kann is a solid chess opening, that isn’t to say that it is an opening weapon simply used to make a draw. In fact, it carries some hidden bite.

On many occasions, for example, Black outplays White in a slightly better endgame or parries an overambitious attack from White and counters with a winning strike.

In this lesson, IM Robert Ris explores play after 2.d4 d5 3.Nc3 dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nf6 5.Nxf6+. IM Ris looks at 5…exf6. This is a challenging continuation for White to face.

Caro Kann: Latest Trends in the Exchange Variation – IM Robert Ris

IM Robert Ris investigates another testing attempt for White to play against the Caro-Kann – the Exchange Variation.

The position of interest occurs after the moves 1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.exd5 cxd5.

At first glance, this variation looks rather harmless. Yet, this is not the case and an unprepared Black player can soon end up in trouble if he does not take this line seriously.

Apart from the option to play 4.c4 (playing the Botvinnik-Panov Attack), strong White players have recently focused on the older move of 4.Bd3.

caro kann defenseAfter the main continuation 4…Nc6 5.c3, Black is at a crossroads. He can either play the fashionable 5…Qc7 (with the idea of preventing White from playing 6.Bf4) or the old main move 5…Nf6 (see diagram).

Due to the fact that White players have found some new and promising ideas against 5…Qc7, IM Robert Ris sticks to 5…Nf6. He shows plenty of new ideas for Black in this line and proves that Black can get equal chances in this variation.

If you regularly face the Exchange Variation with Black or play this line with White and want to stay up-to-date, this lesson is a must-watch.

Caro Kann: A Practical Repertoire For Black Against The Advance Variation – IM Robert Ris

In this lesson, IM Ris investigates another testing attempt for White to play against the Caro Kann – the Advance Variation.

The position of interest occurs after the moves 1.e4 c6 2.d4 d5 3.e5.

robert ris caro kannHere, Black’s main move is quiet 3…Bf5, trying to develop the light-squared bishop outside the pawn chain. Yet, IM Robert Ris recommends the more ambitious 3…c5 for Black.

After 3…c5, Black falls slightly behind in development as he moves his c-pawn twice, but manages to immediately challenge White’s center.

As IM Robert Ris shows in the video, the move 3…c5 became quite popular lately and has been successfully used by players like Vishy Anand, Li Chao and Jorden Van Foreest. Black gets excellent practical play in this line and has a multitude of tactical ideas that White can easily fall for.

Dominate with the Caro-Kann now!

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Running Time

+3 Hours

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Content Outline

1) Caro-Kann Two Knights Variation with 3..Bg4 – IM Ekaterina Atalik
2) Caro-Kann Two Knights Variation with 3..Nf6 – IM Ekaterina Atalik
3) How to Play Against the Caro-Kann – GM Damian Lemos
4) Caro-Kann with 5.Nxf6+ – IM Robert Ris
5) Caro Kann: Latest Trends in the Exchange Variation – IM Robert Ris
6) Caro Kann: A Practical Repertoire For Black Against The Advance Variation – IM Robert Ris