The Course – Seaside Course, Sea Island, Georgia
Details – 7,055 yards, Par 70
The windy Seaside Course is the venue this week on the PGA Tour. This course was developed in 1999 by designer Tom Fazio and can be a tough test, especially if the wind gets up. Putting and Greens in Regulation will be of particular importance here on the Seaside Course, with links style greens that have tricky run off areas. These will be extremely penalizing if the ball doesn’t stay on the short stuff. This course also has tricky bunkers and undulating greens which means a tight shortgame combined with good putting will also be an important factor here.
Webb Simpson 10/1
Webb had a fantastic win at The Shriners three weeks ago in Vegas shooting four solid rounds in the 60’s to finish on -24, a comfortable six strokes clear of Jason Bohn and Ryo Ishikawa. He had a strong finish to the 2013 season with a solo fourth at The Tour Championship at the end of September. For the 2013 season, Webb ranked 40th in Strokes Gained, 8th in GIR, 8th in GIR percentage from 100 yards, 4th in Putting from 15-20 feet and 11th in Putting from 15-25 feet. He has a good history on the Seaside Course finishing second in 2011 and tied 12th in 2010. Current form combined with a good record make Webb a worthy favourite here this week.
David Toms 55/1
Toms came close to winning this event last year finishing in tied 2nd shooting a superb final round 63 to finish runner up to winner Tommy Gainey. He also played well in 2010 finishing in a tie for third. He isn’t the longest player off the tee and ranked 162nd in Driving Distance for the 2013 season, hitting it an average of 277 yards hitting just under 70% of fairways. He also ranked 9th in Proximity to the hole and 13th in Par 4 Birdie or Better Leaders, which should suit him on the Seaside course which only has two par 5’s. He started the season with a steady tied 36th finish at TPC Sumerlin shooting three rounds in the 60’s and finished with a final round 70. He is certainly a player that seems to like this course with good history here and could be one to watch come Sunday.
Boo Weekley 33/1
Boo has had a decent start to the 2013/2014 season opening with a tied 33rd finish at the CIMB Classic and followed that with a tied 11th finish last week at The WGC HSBC Champions. He has played well at the close by at Hilton Head finishing in tied sixth in 2012, which would be a similar layout to the Seaside Course. Statswise last season, he ranked 6th in GIR, 7th in Total Driving and 2nd in GIR Percentage from 175-200 yards. In his last 2 events he ranks 2nd in Driving Accuracy and 21st in GIR. He missed the cut in 2010 but finished in 44th in 2011 and tied 27th in 2012. With good results down the road in nearby Hilton Head and a good finish last week in China, he could be a big contender here.
Harris English 25/1
English has had a solid start to the 2014 season. He comes into this week on the back of a tied 7th finish at The CIMB Classic and before that had a tied 40th finish at The Shriners. He lives locally to Sea Island in Georgia, so he should have plenty of local support. In his one and only visit here in 2012, he finished in a respectable tied 15th. For the 2013 season, he ranked 35th in Driving Distance, 14th in Strokes Gained Putting, 20th in Par 4 Birdie or Better leaders and 18th in Birdie or Better Conversion Percentage. He also ranked 1st in putts from 15-25 feet and 3rd in Putts from 15-20 feet. He will be well rested after taking last week off and seems to have a super all-around game that will suit this course.
Luke Guthrie 30/1
He is a player that’s on top form at the moment with two top five finishes in his last two starts. He finished fourth at The BMW Masters on 9 under, only two behind eventual winner Gonzalo Fernandez Castano. He was the first round leader shooting a superb 65 and followed that with a 71,72,71 finish. He also had a super tied fifth finish at The Shriners that included two 64’s. Statswise he ranks 15th in Strokes Gained, 23rd in Par 4 Birdie or Better Leaders, 1st in GIR Percentage from 75 yards and 4th in Putting from 5-15 feet.
Charles Howell 30/1
Howell is another player showing great form at the moment with two top 10 finishes in his last two starts. He finished in a tie for fifth at the Shriners and followed that up with a tied seventh finish at The CIMB Classic. He has a great record on this course finishing in tied seventh in 2012 and finished in tied sixth in 2010. Statswise he ranks 27th in Driving Distance, 14th in Greens in Regulation, 11th in Approaches from 200 yards, 1st in GIR Percentage 75 – 100 yards, 20th in GIR Percentage 125 – 150 yards, 9th in Putting form 20-25 feet and 13th in Putting from 15-20 feet. Stats combined with course history and current form makes Howell one to watch here this week.
Final Selections –
Webb Simpson 2ptsew/4 pts total
David Toms 1 pt ew/ 2 pts total
Boo Weekley 1pt ew/2 pts total
Harris English 1pt ew/2 pts total
Luke Guthrie 1pt ew/ 2pts total
Charles Howel 1pt ew/ 2pts total
Total Staked = 14 pts
Good Luck and enjoy the golf,
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