The smorgasbord of golf action continues this week as we head to Bay Hill Golf Course in Orlando Florida for one of the highlights of the PGA Tour calendar, the Arnold Palmer Invitational. As usual, we break down the event field and course as well as giving our best bets for the tournament below.
It was a fantastic week in Florida last week for the first WGC event of the year and it was young gun Collin Morikawa that took out the victory while one of our best bets Brooks Koepka finished T2 for a nice pay day.
As one of just five events on the PGA Tour calendar that is given ‘invitational status’, the Arnold Palmer Invitational usually attracts a high quality field because of its prestige and its $9.3 million purse. This season, it will also be a great opportunity for the pros to fine tune their game before the monster event next weekend, THE PLAYERS.
The Field doesn’t boast a lot of the top end talent in the world, with only two Top 10 ranked players in Rory McIlroy and Tyrrell Hatton set to compete. What it lacks in mega-star power, however, it more than makes up for with an abundance of talented players ranked in the 10-40 range. The likes of Bryson DeChambeau, Viktor Hovland, Sungjae Im, Patrick Reed, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Hideki Matsuyama, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day and Tommy Fleetwood will all be in attendance this season.
Former winners of the Arnold Palmer who will be back in an attempt to add another trophy to the case include Tyrrell Hatton (2020), Francesco Molinari (2019), Marc Leishman (2018), Jason Day (2017) and Matt Every, who won in back to back years in 2015/16.
Bay Hill Golf Course in Orlando, Florida is one of the toughest tests a professional golfer will face on the PGA Tour. It came in as the sixth ranked hardest golf course during the 2019 season, playing 0.378 shots over par in the Arnold Palmer Invitational. It plays as a Par 72 layout can stretch to 7,419 yards and usually demands strong and accurate play off the tee.
The greens at Bay Hill consistently rank amongst the hardest to find on the PGA Tour, meaning placement both off the tee and on approach is absolutely crucial for players wanting to succeed at the Arnold Palmer. We will be hunting strong ball strikers who score well from tee-to-green this week.
1. Rory McIlroy ($9.00) – Has won at Bay Hill before and is arguably the purest ball striker in the world. Has been a little down on form lately, but that is by Rory McIlroy’s standards, not the standards of an average PGA Tour professional. Has still already racked up seven top 25s from eight tournaments this season.
2. Tyrrell Hatton ($17.00) – Another European here atop the rankings as Hatton comes into this tournament in career best form. The Englishman went on an unbelievable stretch through the European Tour at the start of the season and finished T22 at the WGC on the weekend, his first tournament in the U.S. since November.
3. Patrick Reed ($21.00) – Finishes this season read T13 at the U.S. Open, T14 at the ZOZO, T10 at the Masters, T21 at the Tournament of Champions, CUT at the American Express, 1st at the Farmers Insurance and T9 at the WGC event on the weekend. Quietly putting together a FedEx Cup contending season.
Tommy Fleetwood $41
Sam Burns $41
Si Woo Kim $81
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