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Round 1 nears conclusion at GolfNow Championship

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Competition is heating up at the first major of the WGT Virtual Tour season, as a record number of participants are all vying for their share of the 400,000 WGT-credit purse at the GolfNow Championship.

The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island has often proved a stern test for many of the game's best, most recently at the 2012 PGA Championship, but several of the top WGT players had no such issues on the South Carolina layout during Round 1. Canadian CptWomp and American chop948 both share the early lead among the Tour Legend players with an 18-hole, stroke-play score of 53, while the group of contenders just one stroke back includes dansamcam, who has won each of the first two events this season. Joining him with a first-round 54 are ujjbnjk, Tarheelfan83, Mannyankees and jmoney2224.

The Legend tier is currently crowded at the top, with LyonWoulds leading after an opening 54. User sub50 is just one stroke back, while the group two off the pace after rounds of 56 includes scottyork, hatchy66, gooch134 and NottiGal.

Players have an unlimited number of chances to card their lowest first-round score by March 26, then will have just one shot at posting a second-round score by March 31. The top 70 combined scores from the Pro tier and above will then split the super-sized credit purse, and points will count toward each player's season-long total in the race to qualify for the Virtual Tour Championship in December.

Some Round 1 highlights from Kiawah Island include Tour Legend GEHL13's accurate approach to the par-5 second, and Legend player ANT11111 with a perfectly executed tee shot on the par-3 fifth hole.

Click here for more information on the WGT Virtual Tour, or to get signed up for the GolfNow Championship. The first tee box at Kiawah Island awaits!