Just four days on from Augusta The RBC Heritage returns to its traditional post-Masters spot on the schedule.
While Dustin Johnson missed the cut at the Masters, the reigning FedExCup champion and South Carolina native will be headlining the field at Hilton Head.
Webb Simpson fared pretty well at Augusta and returns to defend the title he won last year while Collin Morikawa looks to improve on his T64 finish at last year’s Heritage and current FedExCup leader Bryson DeChambeau returns to Hilton Head after finishing T8 last season
Course: Harbour Town Golf Links
Length: 7100 yards (Par71)
Greens: TifEagle Bermuda
Architect: Pete Dye
As every year Harbour Town is the spot to cure your Masters hangover and while it of course cant compare to Augusta I have always liked this little South Carolina course.
And it seems more and more of the players feels the same as the field has gotten stronger and stronger over the past few years and while we won’t see everyone here as we did when this tournament was the second on the schedule coming out of the covid break we get a solid bump in field strength from two years ago.
We are back on another Pete Dye course and while Sawgrass might be his masterpiece this is the most Pete Dye of all Pete Dye courses, with a lot of short tree-lined holes with sharp doglegs often leading to players being blocked from going at the greens.
And speaking of the greens they are Bermuda and some of the smallest on tour and protected by bunkers and water.
The course is situated right by the ocean so wind often becomes a factor and while the current forecast just shows moderate winds, I would lean people who are comfortable when it starts blowing.
This is one of the few weeks a year where length off the tee truly does not matter, it is though important to be able to place the tee shots in the correct spots as this is a course all about angels and you would rather put it in the relative short rough on the correct side than in the fairway on the wrong side.
While placing your tee shots is something needed just to have a chance the tournament is won by having a killer approach game and being able to get up and down when you inevitably miss some of these tiny greens.
Here are some of the things I will be looking at for:
- Par 4 scoring
- Strokes gained approach
- Proximity 150-200 yards
- Strokes gained around the green
- Bermuda putting
- Pete Dye record
Wagered: +35.61 units
Wagered: 179 units
Won: 407.42 units
Result: 228.42 units
Waste Management: Brooks Koepka 41-1, Genesis Invitational: Max Homa 56-1, The Players Championship: Justin Thomas 19-1, Valero Texas Open: Jordan Spieth 11-1
Being one of the premier players in the field coming off a missed cut on the number at Augusta, Berger is the profile of player I like to target here.
It does not hurt that this short technical track with Bermuda greens should set up perfectly for the guy who has already won twice since the restart 10 months ago and he showed just that last summer when he almost won here for the second week in a row, but in the end, just fell short to Webb Simpson in a stronger field than this week.
The last time he missed a cut he won the next week at Pebble Beach and while I am still not sold on the cocky American in Majors and on longer tracks these type of events are his bread and butter so when we get over 20 times our money and many of the other top players should be worn out from battling all four days last week it is an easy bet for me.
The former Players champion lead the field in approach last week and while fatigue is a small concern the positive trends are just too many to ignore.
He loves Pete Dye courses ranking first from tee to green over the past 50 rounds, he lost in a playoff here 3 years ago and while his putter is always a little suspicious.
He is not only a world-class iron player when he is on he is also one of the best around the green players in the world.
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