This Week in the ITC 9-26-19: Taking a Look at the USA Region Ranks, and Memes of course.

Hello, fellow Warhammer 40k fans! SaltyJohn from TFG Radio, and one of the Las Vegas Open Head Judges, here to bring you my weekly article on the ITC. This week we cover the top 20 from each Region in the USA!

For perhaps the third week in a there has not been any movement of note in the top 10 of the ITC Overall. To that end, I thought I would give a snapshot of the top 30 overall and then give an overview of the top 20 in each of the Regions in the United States with a snapshot of a single player from each that I think has an interesting record this season. Before that though, there’s been a lot going on in the ITC, the Competitive 40k community, 40k in general and some of it has been put into meme form, so here is a few of those before we talk shop.

If you like 40k memes you really should follow r/grimdank on Reddit. Some, not all, but some of the people on there create some great 40k related meme content. I really enjoy making memes, even 40k related ones, but Reece won’t let me post most of them here! Let’s take a quick dive into looking at who is in the top 30 of the ITC Overall!

That top 30 has some huge names and monstrously great players in it. The scariest part about this top 30 is that there are some really notable players missing, indicating they have yet to really make their push for the season. That sort of confidence is both inspiring and fear-inducing. My favorite part of this top 30 is that, while populated with amazing players, it is a markedly different top 30 from this time last year, or even the end of the season last year. The diversity of the field at the top from year to year and even month to month has been staggering the last few years I have been writing these articles on a weekly basis for Frontline Gaming. If there’s one thing I have learned, it’s that consistency among the players in the top 30 or so is quite variable, but the level of competitive play is always top-notch. As it should be. Let’s move on and take a look at the top 20 in the North East of the US.

When your Region’s top 2 players are TJ Lanigan and Andrew Gonyo you know it’s going to be fierce competition. There aren’t too many nationally known names in the top 20 of the North East, but the ones they have are heavy hitters who have a good chance of winning events they enter. Let’s take a quick look at a snapshot of Andrew Gonyo’s season thus far.

I wasn’t blowing smoke when I said the top 2 in this Region are great. If the number two player’s worst finish is a 47th placing at Adepticon, then you know the level of competition in the region is quite stiff. Playing mostly Imperium this season with a healthy mix of a few events as pure Deathwatch which is really cool. I look forward to seeing how Andrew does with the remainder of his season.

The United States Mid-West is also a great group of players with some good competition for the top spots. The Mid-West is a bit of an unknown Mecca of Competitive 40k in that there are a lot of events within, or very close to the region, every weekend. Supplying its players with an almost West Coast/South West level of competitive play options.

With its plethora of events, it is no surprise that the Mid-West would have a large number of nationally known 40k names in the top 20 for their Region. From Justin Curtis and Dan Sammons to Daniel Sanson, Treynor Merrill Wolfe and Trent Northington to number 2 Ben Cherwien that region is quite competitive. Well done to the organizers in the Region for getting so many big names on the map and sharing those players with the other regions and allowing your players to have such a vast number of options each month. With the opportunity to play so often it is not surprising that some of these players are featured in other Regions top 50. Ben Chewien is, in particular, making a great run at things this season.

Representing mostly Aeldari this season Ben’s worst finish so far has been 28th place. At the NOVA Open! Making it into the top 30 of a Major event really is an accomplishment, but when it’s your lowest placing at a Major all season? Impressive.

The American South has a unique meta, however, that does not stop them from having not only great events but many well-known players in their upper echelons as well.

The top 6 players are all names you recognize if you’ve been following competitive 40k this season. In the top 20 of the South, I can easily pick out 7 names I routinely see pop up in on my radar when writing these articles each week, and online for various reason. Chris Blackham has been performing well as one of the better teams in the Region, Team Battle Brothers.

With strong finishes at 3 Warzone events and switching around from Faction to Faction Chris has an impressive record. Many players would need to dedicate an entire season to a single army/faction to perform as well as Chris has so far. Truly great to see a top player mix things up in the course of a single season.

The American South-West like the South has a rather unique edge to it. While not so much a unique meta it is unique in that it borders the South and West which have a huge number of events that draw big names. So you will often see the bigger names from those three regions bleeding over into the other Region standings.

To me, one of the coolest parts of the South West is that Antonio Cedeno is in third with a strong 904.05 points. Antonio Cedeno may be one of the most underrated players in the ITC and I wanted to point out just what he has been doing so well with this season that garners that sort of praise.

Antonio’s worst placing has ben 43rd, out of Region in Dallas. That alone is impressive, but when you look at his army… The absolute madman has been performing this well playing Necrons! One of the most universally panned as one of the weakest factions in 8th edition and Antonio Cedeno just keeps on trucking and running over his opponents. Well done Antonio, this is legitimately one of the most impressive things I have seen writing these articles the past few years.

The United States West Region boasts some of the highest concentration of top tier 40k talent in the world. When you look at even smaller GTs like the Battle for LA, Slaughterfest, Hammer of Wrath, DiceHammer, TSHFT, or even some of the RTTs it is a shark tank out there. Some hyper-competitive players out in the West and they saturate the field at these events, the level of competition is high and the battle for those ITC points is fierce.

15 of the top 20 in the West are known players on the National level. From Ben Cromwell and Cooper Waddell to Jim Vesal, Junior, Rich Kilton, and Michael Timpe you have amazing players. Then you have some well known 40k podcasters. Sean Morgan, Jeff Poole (who also made top 8 at LVO in 2018), Ray Ahumada (won best Asuryani last season), and Colin Sherman who I featured in one of my articles for his high Hobby scores this year. It’s crazy the amount of top tier competition you run into at the various events in the West. Richard Cozart is a really interesting player to look at. He overcame his “always a bridesmaid never a bride” doldrums for tournaments and has been tearing it up.

First, look at that list of events. It is massive. Richard has been devoted to Chaos and Choas Daemons all season, racking up the points with 7 number one finishes at events of various levels. Winning Slaughterfest with a field populated with the type of players it had is a really impressive feat. Richard is a player to watch going into So Cal Open and the LVO in January. He will certainly be in the running for top spots at those events.

As usual, let me know what you thought of the article in the comments! If you have anything in particular from this season in the ITC you’d like me to cover, just let me know!

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!

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About SaltyJohn

John has been playing Warhammer 40k since the 3rd edition box set with Space Marines, Dark Eldar, and weird green palm trees were in the set. He is currently a 40k Head Judge for the Las Vegas Open, the largest 40k tournament in the world. An avid board gamer, a huge fan of video games, and a guest spot on Geek and Sundry as a "Historian" during an episode of "Game the Game" round out his geek credentials. You can catch "Salty" John on TFG Radio's Twitch Show, and Podcast, as well as find him streaming video games on Twitch on the TFG Radio Twitch page from time to time.

10 Responses to “This Week in the ITC 9-26-19: Taking a Look at the USA Region Ranks, and Memes of course.”

  1. Reecius
    Reecius September 26, 2019 6:54 am #

    Great article this week, John. Lot’s of great insights. It’s crazy that some of these players that are amazingly good and doing well aren’t even in the top 30 this year. Really goes to show how stiff the competition has gotten.

    • SaltyJohn
      SaltyJohn September 26, 2019 7:28 am #

      I have been thinking that same thing week after week when looking at the standings, it’s insane the level of play being exhibited by the top 100 players let alone the top 30.

      • Reecius
        Reecius September 26, 2019 7:35 am #

        Yeah, no Brandon Grant? lol, what? And a lot of the top regional players aren’t in the top 30, maybe their #1 and that’s it. It’s crazy.

        • SaltyJohn
          SaltyJohn September 26, 2019 7:54 am #

          I think it’s crazy that you could be number one in your region in the US and not in the top 10! The competition is fierce and the more players from around the world get into the ITC the less it becomes an American-centric system. Which is only for the better.

  2. Avatar
    Deno September 26, 2019 7:49 am #

    Salty John I am so use to the abuse that I’m sure the complements for Necrons were intended for Chris. Antonio (Me) was defiantly intended to receive an abusive meme.

    • SaltyJohn
      SaltyJohn September 26, 2019 7:52 am #

      I mean, I could meme you if you really want. But I usually only do that for the truly deserving of ridicule. 😉

  3. Avatar
    JimV September 26, 2019 8:04 am #

    SO canada isnt a region of the US! Heresy

    • SaltyJohn
      SaltyJohn September 26, 2019 9:05 am #

      I… don’t know how to respond to this…

      • Avatar
        AlamoMelt September 27, 2019 3:28 am #

        I’d suggest looking up a catchy show tune from a while back, “Blame Canada.”

        • SaltyJohn
          SaltyJohn September 27, 2019 8:50 am #

          The South Park movie is a cinematic treasure and work of musical genius.

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