Today I ran into one of those problems that really ticked me off, it is a Level 50 exercise.
As I'm playing through the variation, actually struggling would better describe my play. I notice that I'm not finding a move/theme/glimmer of an idea that makes any sense. Every move I enter comes up being wrong. Finally after enough of these moves I'm able to work my way through to the "solution". It turns out to be a drawing line, according to ICCF Grandmaster Maxim Blokh's analysis of best play for both sides. While I think Mr. Blokh has presented some really great examples of saving swindles throughout the entire CD. I just couldn't buy this one in particular. I kept thinking through the entire exercise all White has to do is give back the material, none of this is forced. Plus who in the heck is going to look for a drawing line with all material still on the board? Add to this no immediate mate threats, or any forced loss of material that would lead to a decisive imbalance for one side or the other.
So I threw in my red flag, made my call for the upstairs official to review the play. So after further review Mr. Fritz called malarkey on ICCF GM Blokh's analysis and sided with me. While I lost some points I was able to keep my time out and regain a small bit of my dignity. Not that there is much left after the trouncing I have been taking during these exercises.
This brings me to my next idea about the software being used for this course of study.
It seems to me that a beginning player would benefit more from a CD that was focused on mating patterns and direct attacks against the enemy king. Than they would from a smorgasbord that does a great job of smothering the student with a whole lot of different themes but really doesn't allow focus on one particular idea until he has it down cold. This CT-Art CD kind of reminds me of the old "Jack of all trades, master of none" saying. Please don't get me wrong, it's a great CD. Yes I know it will allow you to select exercises by theme as opposed to degree of difficulty. But there are times when I feel like I would benefit more from a specialized CD. Maybe saving the CT-Art CD for the second run of the 7 circles once I have a solid foundation in mating patterns.
Someone pass me some cheese for my whine.
Level 10 - 99% (Completed)
Level 20 - 96% (Completed)
Level 30 - 85% (Completed)
Level 40 - 76% (Completed)
Level 50 - 68% (So far)
940 exercises completed 269 remaining in circle 2.
67 days down 42 to go.