This 2nd division PGA Tour event is like playing the lottery. If you win you’ll win big, but throw all golfing form logic out of the window. Look at the 2 year history of this Donald Trump inspired event (nice to see him at the Honda Classic on Sunday) and a few pointers jump from the numbers.
Expect experienced campaigners to eventually outlast their inexperienced rivals. Kraft (08) and Bradley (09) had 32 seasons of experience between them when they won the title. Secondly don’t expect Mayakoba Classic contenders from a few weeks back to contend here. It just doesn’t seem to work that way. Thirdly expect some tough conditions with rain and gusting +20mph winds the norm here and forecast.
Players who are in-form, especially non PGA Tour winners, tend to put too much pressure on themselves at these secondary events and eventually an experienced ‘winner’ who is in half decent nick wins the 2 Year exemption for taking the title. That 2 Year Tour exemption can be quite some motivator for the veterans.
As I pointed out last week Joe is in great nick right now. The Texas based player has over 10 seasons on Tour and was a Top 50 player in 2005. He won his only title in 2007. Amazingly enough that was the 2nd tier event at Milwaukee, the weekend of the British Open. No experience in Puerto Rico, but current momentum and a 12th in Mexico in 2008, show he can play these types of tropical courses. 26th including a 2nd Round 68 at Honda last week show that the Texan can play in tough windy conditions. 9th in this our Rico Predictor model
I’m expecting big things of Mr Overton this week. The Indiana based player has a superb record on Florida swing courses, so can play windy conditions effectively. Incredibly he 13th at the Open last year proved he isn’t a ‘fair weather’ player. 2 previous appearances at Trump International have yielded a 9th place. When you link that into half decent current form (24th at Phoenix), Overton has the package and experience (2010 is his 5th season) to contend for his first PGA Tour win this week.
Florida based DiMarco is the perfect example of a player who could find himself in contention this week. A 3 time Tour winner who hasn’t won since 2002 and as a result has plummeted to 355 in the World Golf Rankings. Don’t let any of that put you off, it’s actually a huge positive here. Fact is DiMarco will be motivated in Puerto Rico for a key reason. He’s currently playing on sponsors exemptions, so the thought of a Top 10 or a win yielding a 2 Year Tour exemption in a tournament with a weak field will focus the mind and his game. 4th in our Rico Predictor model
Texan Maggert is having his best start to a season for a long while. Up 40 places in the World Rankings, he has 4 cuts made from 6 appearances. This 3 time PGA Tour winner, in his 20th season, is in decent nick with a decent performance at Phoenix following up a 20th in Mexico and 27th at Pebble. Like DiMarco the 2 year exemption will motivate the straight hitting Maggert. 10th in our Rico Predictor model
As we often say momentum is important in a golfers Psyche. Take the little heard of Texan, Jimmy Walker. Snatched the final 125th place in the PGA Money List to guarantee his card by holing a 5 footer and finishing 15th at Disney in November. After a terrible start to 2010, 3 solid results in his last 4 appearances including a superb 2nd Round 66 at the Honda last week show Walker is in-touch right now
REMEMBER - For T10 betting we use price permitting as they pay out in FULL on tied place bets. It’s a no brainer so click here to open an account.
11th in our Rico Predictor model Missouri man Williamson is as streaky as they come. However he has as a superb (for him) record in Puerto Rico with 2 Cuts made and a contending 13th in 2009, allied to decent results in Mexico. Worth a cheeky point with as ever paying out Top 10 ties in FULL
Odds and bookmaker offers correct at 15:30BST 9.3.10 but naturally subject to fluctuation