It has been 17 years since John Feinstein’s seminal golfing classic A Good Walk Spoiled. In that time the PGA has undergone a huge change and we are now in the midst of a full-blown revolution. In the past 16 major championships, 11 winners have been 33 or younger, and most of those were still in their ‘20s.
A talented crop of young golfers with big personalities are trying to wrench the game from legends like Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Ernie Els, and they’re bringing a new, Internet-savvy fan base along for the ride. Rory McIlroy, Bubba Watson, and Justin Rose are just a few of the names putting themselves forward as potential torchbearers for the next surge of transcendent champions.
There is no doubt that 2014 will be their year. With the Ryder Cup looming, Tiger almost back to his best and Mcllroy desperate to recover from his tailspin, Shane Ryan, who covers golf for ESPN-backed Grantland, will tell the story of year on the PGA from the perspective of the dozen leading contenders and shine the brightest light on the Tour. What he will reveal is the warts and all of the modern game, the ferocity of the competition, the hatred that frequently boils over between the players, and just what the Americans think of Ian Poulter’s trousers, never mind that he almost single-handedly orchestrated the Miracle at Medinah in matching fuchsia top and shoes.
By the end of 2014, the landscape of World golf will look very different. Shane Ryan’s Chasing the Legends will provide the first and definitive story of how it happened — the winners and the losers and how this will affect the locker-room hierarchy for years to come.