Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, California
Pebble Beach Golf Links – Par 71, 6,816 yards and has three par 5’s and five Par 3’s.
Spyglass Hill – Par 71, 6,858 yards and has four par 5’s and four par 3’s.
Monterey Peninsula – Par 72, 6,838 yards and has four par 5’s and four par 3’s
This tournament is played on three courses which include Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and Monterey Peninsula. This is a Pro-Am format and is the same as The CareerBuilder Challenge taking place on all three courses over the first three rounds with everyone playing Pebble Beach on Sunday. All the courses measure less than 7,000 yards and all feature four par fives with Pebble beach and Spyglass Hill playing as par 71’s. Monterey Peninsula is a par 72 because it has five par 3’s.
Straight away we notice that length is not a huge issue here, but the main defence for these courses is the wind coming off the water on the Monterey Peninsula. The weather can be a factor with rain and wind being quite common in California this time of year.
There are a few different factors to consider. The first factor is grass type with the greens here being poa annua which is a grass that tends to be a bit bumpy. The greens are also quite small so be on the lookout for players with good GIR and scrambling stats. The grass type on the greens is the same as Torrey Pines and the setup of the tournament is similar to The CareerBuilder so players that had a good performance over the last two-three weeks are also worth considering.
Previous winners here include Dustin Johnson (2010), DA Points (2011), Phil Mickelson (2012), Brandt Snedeker (2013&2015) and Jimmy Walker (2014). For some strange reason, this course tends to favour the bigger hitters. There are 16 par 5’s played here this week so par 5 scoring is worth checking out. As I said above, players with good GIR and scrambling are also worth looking at. Guys with good par 3 scoring stats that are good poa annua putters should also go well here this week.
Brandt Snedeker 12/1
Sneds had a mixed bag last week in Phoenix starting with a 67 in round one and following that with a disappointing 71,74 in rounds two and three and finished well shooting a 68 to finish T33. He played superb at the unplayable Torrey Pines shooting a 69 on Sunday and ended up winning The Farmers Insurance Open by one strokes over KJ Choi. He started the season off with a respectable T17 at The Frys and followed that with a win at The Franklin Templeton Shootout with playing partner Jason Dufner, who had a great win at The CareerBuilder Challenge a couple of weeks ago.
Sneds followed the win with a T3 at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions and took that momentum into the Sony Open where he played very solid all week shooting a 63 in round one and shot 65,66,66 to finish 20 under for the tournament. He got into a playoff Fabien Gomez, but was just pipped at the post on the second playoff hole. He has a superb record here with wins in 2015 and 2013 and a T5 in 2012. He is in fine form and is playing well enough to win for a third time this week.
Jimmy Walker 16/1
Walker was very close to winning in Torrey Pines a couple of weeks ago when he was leading going into the final round. He ended up finishing his final round on the Monday and shot a final round 77 due to horrendous conditions to finish T4. He has been playing well over the last few weeks finishing T8 at The Hero World Challenge just before Christmas, T10 at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions,T13 at The Sony Open and T4 at The Farmers.
Walker has a great record around Pebble finishing T21 last year, a win in 2014, T3 in 2013, T9 in 2012 and T9 in 2011. He ranks 37th in driving distance, 31st in strokes gained putting and 16th in par 5 scoring. After coming close at The Farmers, Walker looks a good shout here especially on a course he has played so well on before.
J.B Holmes 25/1
J.B has been playing great golf over the last few weeks finishing T6 last week in Phoenix and T6 at The Famers Insurance Open in the weather stricken Torrey pines. He started 2016 off with a decent performance in Kapalua finishing a respectable T24 at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions. He was showing signs of good form back in December with a T8 at The Hero World Challenge and a T12 at The Franklin Templeton Shootout. He finished off the season in style with a T4 at The BMW Championship, a T8 at The Tour Championship at East Lake and was part of the winning Presidents Cup Team.
Holmes is another player with a decent record here in Pebble finishing T10 last year, T13 in 2011 and second in 2010. He also ticks a lot of boxes statswise ranking fifth in driving distance averaging just over 316 yards off the tee. With J.B’s distance, he can dominate the par 5’s this week and looks to be in fantastic form coming into this.
Shane Lowry 40/1
The Irishman comes here in great form after two good performances over the last two weeks. Lowry had a great week in Phoenix finishing T6 on nine under for the week. He started well with a 65 in round one and finished strongly with a 68 in round four. He also played exceptionally well in the weather delayed Farmers Insurance Open in Torrey Pines finishing T13 and appeared to deal with the wet and windy conditions very well over the weekend.
He has been known to play well in windy, linksy setups winning the Irish Open in Baltray as an amateur on ’09 and good performances in The Alfred Dunhill Links, Scottish Open’s and Open Championships over the last few years. Lowry is averaging just under 300 yards off the tee and ranks 15th in stroke gained putting and ranks 27th in par 3 scoring. He finished T21 here last year but comes here in much better form this time around.
Patrick Reed 35/1
This could be a bit of an unknown after Reed suffered a foot injury in Torrey Pines and withdrew after a disastrous 81 in round three. Despite that he comes here in decent form and played great golf in Asia before Christmas with four top 10’s in five starts. He had a great week at The Hong Kong Open finishing T3 on 11 under for the tournament. He followed that with a T10 at The CIMB in Malaysia which included another four rounds in the 60’s to finish -17 for the tournament and a solo second finish at The BMW Masters where he lost a playoff to Kristoffer Broberg on the first playoff hole.
Reed had a great week at The Hero World Challenge at the start of December finishing solo second and followed that with another solo second in Kapalua at The HTOC. He has played well here in the past finishing T29 last year, T13 in 2014 and T7 in 2013. If he comes here injury free he could be a big contender.
Final Selections –
Brandt Snedeker 12/1 2pts EW
Jimmy Walker 16/1 2pts EW
J.B Holmes 25/1 1 pt EW
Shane Lowry 40/1 1 pt EW
Patrick Reed 35/1 1pt EW
Total Staked = 14 pts
Good luck and enjoy the golf,
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