The Honda Classic
A quality field with this event as players get ready for next weeks World Golf event. The three big names that avoided the match play last week play this week as Mickelson, drug Woods and Scott all line up. None of Woods or Scott have won here however so It would be interesting to see if they can make it a first as the PGA Tour moves away from the West Coast, while Mickelson has never played this event before.
This course has hosted the event since 2007 so their is plenty course form to go on. It was the most difficult par 70 non major on the tour last year. This course has not always been kind to the favourites as noted in my opening. Look for this course to test most aspects of a players game, good accurate driving being key part of that.
4 under par rounds could well be enough to win this as -10 is always an impressive score here. The home run from the 15th are tricky and it could well be worth laying players about to take on the trick run in. A good sand player will do well here as most players will find the sand several times during the week and need to get up and down and make those difficult par putts.
Last Five Winners:
2013 – Michael Thompson -9
2012 – Rory McIlroy -12
2011 – Rory Sabbatini -9
2010 – Camilo Villegas -13
2009 – Y.E Yang -9
This week I will be focusing on decent putter with good GIR and Scrambling stats as that seems to be what is required here. Anything near -10 might win this week with conditions expected to prove quiet tricky.
Note this week that Skybet, Totesport Betfred and Paddy Power will pay on 6 places.
The Honda Classic Picks:
Phil Mickelson 25/1 paddy power – Coming off his spring break with family. Ticks plenty boxes to do well on this type of course, but not played it before to judge on that view. Note that all bar one of his season opening wins came from nowhere so he has never needed form in the run up.
Zach Johnson 25/1 various – A reliable winner on tour making his 2nd appearance here. Won a Sony Open so this is a test that should suit his game. Will be my lowest return as my 5th pick.
Henrik Stenson 30/1 betvictor- Match play in the desert was never going to suit his playing style and heading back to a tight course with Bermuda greens will suit the Swede. Winner of both money tables last season and has a masters on his mind.
Luke Donald (70s Betfair 13 place)- Florida based so has always tended to enjoy the East coast events. Early exit from match play given him the tiem to prepare for this. 2nd in this just 2 years ago.
Will MacKenzie 80/1 Paddypower- A local player so no surprise he has placed at this event before and could threaten once again. His game is in pretty good order. 12th and 5th last two visits here. No one at this price ticks as many boxes as MacKenzie
The Honda Classic Picks