It’s been a couple of years since I began what has developed into my “Tenacious Golf World. It’s time to put this all into perspective, and provide an update on its progress.
The Tenacious Golf World? What Is It?
This completely fictional golf environment is comprised principally of Plaay.com‘s Pro National Golf Tour player set. My vision for this world has adapted over time. Each layer was added in sequence, with the third still not quite implemented. But let’s lay out each layer before going into current status:
- Tenacious Golf Tour. The top professional tour in the TGW, the first season saw a 24 event schedule. Since the PNG set included 164 golfers, I had decided that I wanted 125 TGT exempt golfers to start. I used some random selections to bring out a good representation of various levels of golfer in the 125 exempts. Since tournament fields vary in size, usually 144 or 156 golfers, the non-exempts were married with a host of personally-created cards (PCC’s) that used random number generators to help seed the traits.
- Slacker Tour. Once I had pulled out the non-exempt PNG golfers, the idea began to germinate that these players needed an alternative way to become exempt. Additionally, with all of these PCC’s now entering the fold (upwards of 200 PCC’s have been created, though only about half have been utilized thus far), there needed to be a bit more thought into the structure up and down of the TGW. The Slacker Tour became the TGW’s Web.Com tour equivalent. A slimmed down 12-tournament schedule allowed for these other player to compete and determine which were ready for the big time.
- Stream Valley Country Club. This is the idea that has been shoved onto the backburner, but still has some place in my brain to want to develop. The online tabletop sports game community was the source of inspiration for a group of cards to be utilized like your local country club. My hope was for some random tournaments, perhaps devising a league or other outlets to foster good times within the group. The plans are stirring in my head, but with all of the other projects that take focus, this has unfortunately stayed waiting in the wings.
Year 1 was completed in due time. Since I had only 125 exempts, marrying in the non-exempt PNG and PCC cards created a final standings that had a mix of PNG’s and PCC’s. This also created some difficulty in assessing the Slacker Tour, because many of these cards had also been used in that Tour.
The 2018 Season – In A Nutshell
Interesting results were the order of the day for the TGT’s first season. Initially Yun Leesong had a great run, winning the first Major tournament, the Masterful, as well as the Sawgrass Championship and the Blues Belt Classic. It looked like he would be the frontrunner heading to the playoff
But Leesong eventually cooled. Carson Rodell took the American Open at Shinnecock Hills. Then Dustin Emerick pulled through with back to back wins in the summer, including a major at his home Championship of the UK staged at Carnoustie. After surprising Todd Ahrens grabbed the final major, the Tenacious Pro Showcase at Merion, Emerick powered through to finish the regular season in 1st place in the points, with 12 Top 10s.
Yet the ensuing Playoff was a disappointment for the favorite Emerick. He finished out of the Top 25 in the first two Playoff events at Cherry Hills and TPC Boston. Then at Congressional, he did finish a solid 3rd behind Danny Gallatin. But Heath Somers was crowned the Tour Champion at Atlanta, and the Brit was forced to wait another season to assert himself on the TGT.
Planning for Season 2
That brought us to the planning for Season 2. The aforementioned situation brought me to the decision to create a complete Priority Ranking within the TGW. This would be a continuous list from 1 through the very end of the rankings. Everyone from 1 through 125 on the TGT Point Rankings would be TGT Exempt for 2019. At the point where the TGT Playoffs began, players ranked 126-175 were dropped into the Slacker Tour Playoff, to face off against the best of the Slacker Tour.
The Top 50 from the Slacker Tour Playoff then earned provisional exemption to the TGT, as slots 126-175 on the Priority Ranking. The Slacker Tour would then be filled from 176 on with the players who were unable to qualify for the TGT, and these positions would be hard and fast – a player at 175 in the Priority Ranking is only eligible for TGT events, but if the field for a tournament is full, that player would not receive a berth in the field.
So once that played out, Plaay released their biennial update of the PNG Cards, which creates the potential for continuity troubles. In Year 1, Ellis Moberly finished 57th and Alec Newcombe 65th in the TGT points, earning them an additional exemption. Yet Plaay decided to remove them from their player set, either due to age or poor performance in their own simulations.
So I decided to develop updates to my PCC’s, which included updated cards for those not included in the 2019 PNG player set. Additionally, there are a number of brand new PNG players available in 2019, and those have been seeded into the Slacker Tour at the end of the eligibility. So there remains a way for players to play their way onto the Tenacious Golf Tour.
2019 Tenacious Golf Tour – What’s Up Now?
The TGT is currently at the halfway mark of the 2019 season, and the story has been Emerick. His 2018 shortcomings have been exorcised, amassing 6 wins thus far in 14 events. He just completed an amazing back nine in the Final Round at Augusta to win his second major title. He has nearly doubled the winnings ($9.1MM) of his nearest foe, Australian Trent McAdams ($4.8MM). No other competitor has more than one victory on the 2019 campaign.
On another note, the 2019 season saw the first PCC to prove victorious on the TGT. Harley Villanueva conquered PGA West for the Celebrity Classic title, and Samson Peterson followed suit a month later at Riviera to turn Southern California into the land of the Upstart.
There is still a lot of season left, with notable events remaining at Bethpage (Tenacious Pro Showcase), Pebble Beach (American Open), and Royal Troon (Championship of the UK). That will lead to the playoff, which will provide some real drama – unless Emerick continues to shine in the 2nd half.
2019 Slacker Tour – Transition Year
Again, the Slacker Tour has been aided by the fact that players cannot interlope between the tours anymore. With a consistent field, this should allow for a clear path to join the TGT for 50 hopeful golfers.
Though only 3 events in, the 12 event Slacker will ramp up the schedule as summer approaches. Currently Damari Ramsey (PCC) tops the Slacker Tour Points, with a win on the Bayou and 2 Top 10 finishes. Lurking are Andy Jansen (PNG), Haiden Livingston (PCC), and Jason Ollinger who has 3 Top 10s but no victories.
Since the Slacker Tour also is a little more malleable, I may look to some alternative player-created courses for a few of the final events of the season. I don’t like repeating courses very much, which I did previously with Silverado. For instance, Carnoustie is a course that was created by David Gray at Back To Minnesota, and that was an excellent design for a major. So I will see if there are alternative courses available which make sense for a Slacker Tour event.
We’ll check in here with more information regarding the TGT in the future. Yes, it’s 2020, and we’re talking about a 2019 Tour (which has taken awhile to get through 14 events). But there are lots of projects going on in my gameroom, and we will complete this Season 2 in due time.
Thanks for reading this recap, and please feel free to offer comments or suggestions for ways to improve this exciting tour.