Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions: Party or golf tournament?

The Tour’s inaugural Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions will open 2019 with a huge golf party in Orlando!

Is the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions going to be a golf tournament or a party? The LPGA‘s 2019 season opener is shaping up to be a little bit of both, and it’s feeling like a perfect way to start a new season! After all, golf is a game and games are supposed to be fun!

I  can’t imagine a better way to knock the rust of my game – that stuff that accumulates while we’re shopping for perfect gifts and cooking endless meals and basking in the holiday warmth of friends and family gatherings. We all have our limits. I’m having trouble fitting an occasional round of golf into my personal schedule right now and I suspect the pros are facing a similar dilemma.

Then there’s the weather, which has been cold and wet across much of the continental United States.

It’s just not a time that’s conducive for a little work on the range, let alone a full round of golf. About the best I’ve been able to accomplish is keeping my flatstick handy and rolling a few putts across the living room rug while I let the pies bake. And I don’t see things improving over the next month, not in terms of golfing weather or my own schedule. And that just about gets me to January 17, 2019, and the first round of the Tour’s inaugural Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions.

While I’m trying to loosen up my swing and get my approach shots recalibrated the pros are going to be doing the same, and they’re to be having a lot of fun in the process. After all, what’s to complain about if you’re playing golf with folks like Roger Clemens and Colt Ford and hanging out at concerts between rounds?

Celebrities aside, there will be no shortage of LPGA talent at Diamond Resorts.

Brittany Lincicome, who has long been involved with this event when it was a PGA Tour Champions event, summed up the situation this way:

It’s fun to hang out with celebrities. If you play well, great. If not you’re like ‘oh I’m just knocking the rust off.’ So, you kinda get a get out of jail free card if you don’t play well.

Even though Lincicome, who would have been the defending champion at the Pure Silk Bahamas, there’s no more Paradise Island for the Tour, at least not this year. Orlando will be the place to see and be seen when the LPGA 2019 season starts.

It’s a limited field event and every player in the field of 36 has qualified by winning a 2017 or 2018 LPGA event. Don’t let Lincicome kid you. There’s going to be some sharp golf being played at the inaugural Tournament of Champions.

Following the Diamond Resorts Tournament the Tour will head to Australia and another new event on its 2019 schedule, the co-sanctioned ISPS Handa Vic Open. I’m just as delighted to see the LPGA joining hands with the ALPG to support the Vic Open, one of the few events in the pro game that is taking competition to a new and more equitable level.

Next: Getting beyond 'equality chat' at the Vic Open

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