Nine-Year-Old Is Youngest American Chess Master Californian previously youngest to hold 'expert' rank By Nick McMaster, Newser Staff Suggested by Rugal10 Posted Dec 22, 2010 3:44 PM CST 3 comments Comments File photo (AP) (Newser) – A 9-year-old Californian is the youngest American to achieve the rank of "national master," reports the San Jose Mercury News. Samuel Sevian had already been the youngest person, at the age of 8, to be certified a chess "expert," and he got promoted again by the US Chess Federation after a recent match in San Francisco. "It feels good," says Sam, who practices two hours a day with his father and his coach, the latter via Skype. The Sevians are from Armenia, where "chess is very big," Sam's father tells the Mercury News. "It's certainly not a geek sport. Chess players are compared to rock stars." Click here for more and to see a photo of Sam playing.