Barracuda Championship – Thursday 6th August
All eyes maybe on the WGC Bridgestone Invitational this week, but the Barracuda Championship also takes place and it’s my favourite event of the year from a betting perspective. The format is slightly different to a regular strokeplay event and since 2012, the tournament has used the modified stableford scoring system. Players are awarded 8 points for an albatross, 5 for an eagle, 2 for a birdie, 0 for a par, -1 for a bogey and -3 for a double bogey or worse. The player with the highest score after four rounds will be the winner, and last year Geoff Ogilvy scored 49 points to lift the trophy.
The Jack Nicklaus designed Montrêux Golf & Country Club plays host to the Barracuda Championship for the 17th time this year and is located in Reno, Nevada. The course is a 7,472 yard par 72, although the course doesn’t play nearly this far, because it is situated 5,600 feet above sea level, therefore the ball travels much further than usual. For this reason, course form is invaluable and interestingly from 2010-2014, only four players finished inside the top five that have not played in this event previously. In that same period of time, the average age of the top five has been 36, this indicates that experienced players tend to perform well around this venue.
Vaughn Taylor – Vaughn Taylor has a better record around Montrêux Golf & Country Club than most. He won around this week’s venue in 2004 & 2005, and has played it five times since, making the cut on four occasions. It is a golf course that Vaughn Taylor clearly likes and as he’s returning to form, it seems the perfect opportunity to back the American. The 39 year old has made the cut in his last five starts on the PGA Tour and finished 10го in the Barbasol Championship a few weeks back. In the Quicken Loans National last week, Taylor played some great golf from tee to green and made an impressive 20 birdies.
2pts each way @ 40/1
Brian Davis – Admittedly, Brian Davis has had a poor season thus far, and he needs a couple of good results to retain his PGA Tour card. Last week Davis tied for 15го position in the Quicken Loans National, this being his best result since March. This indicates that he’s been putting in some hard work and is returning to form. The Englishman has a great record in this event, although he hasn’t played here for a few years, but finished 9го in 2007, 2nd in 2008 and 21st in 2011. Davis certainly appears to be a very big price in a weak field this week and I’m very happy to have him on side.
1pt each way @ 80/1
Steve Wheatcroft – A 2nd place finish earlier this season and some good results in recent weeks have all but secured Steve Wheatcroft’s playing rights ahead of next season. The American has made his last three cuts and finished in 11го position last week, he made 22 birdies which was the same amount as eventual winner, Troy Merritt. Wheatcroft hasn’t had much success in this event, but he has played in it on three occasions and shot rounds of 66 and 67. 100/1 is too good a price to turn down when you consider how well he’s played recently.
0.75pts each way @ 100/1
Prices correct at time of writing.
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