Course Preview & Picks By Salary Tier – The Byron Nelson Classic

By May 15, 2017PGA, PGA Premium

Introduction

After a somewhat strange PLAYERS Championship which saw only one golfer priced above 9k on DraftKings finish inside the Top 20 (DJ) the PGA Tour moves back to the state of Texas to play the AT&T Byron Nelson. It will be held at TPC Four Seasons at Los Colinas which has hosted this event since the 80s but went through a massive course redesign in 2008, meaning course history before 2008 is basically useless. It is a somewhat tough track and is routinely voted as one of the worst courses on Tour by the players. A myriad of players have won here ranging from the world’s elite (Jason Day and Adam Scott) to guys who are currently struggling to break 80 (Stephen Bowditch and Brendon Todd). Mike Weir came in second place just three years ago. Mike Weir… Long and short hitters both have had success here but golfers that hit it a mile should have an advantage because of the hard to hit fairways (missing the fairway and having a wedge in your hand is a lot easier than missing and having a 7 iron) and the fact that there is rain in the forecast, which should lengthen the course a bit due to lack of roll on tee shots. If you’re looking at shorter hitters this week they should have good iron games, especially from the 150-200 yard range and do consistently well around the greens. Weather is big factor as we saw two years ago when 12 inches of rain fell on the course in the days leading up to the tournament, including 5 inches of rain falling in one night in between the first and second rounds. This led to a hole being shortened from a normal par 4 to a 100 yard par 3 because of all the standing water. As of now (Monday morning) rain is in the forecast every day of the tournament but it doesn’t look like we’ll have the same problems as two years ago because it’s not going to be too torrential. Wind can also play a big part in the outcome as seen by Keegan Bradley’s win a few years ago where he shot just -3 to get the victory. Wind played havoc that year and as of now it looks like it will be in the 10-20 mph range for the week.

Course Description

TPC Four Seasons is a 7,166 yard par 70 course with four par 3s and only 2 par 5s which are both reachable by most. There is a drivable par 4 (11th hole) and the two most difficult holes on the course are the long 500+ yard par 4s (3rd hole, 15th hole). Off the tee golfers will face tight tree lined fairways with many bunkers and water on 8 of the holes. Many of the water hazards stretch the entire length of the hole which will punish both errant tee shots and approaches. These fairways are tough to hit as only around 55% of drives here actually land on the fairway. The trees aren’t that tightly bunched and if golfers are super wild off the tee they could still be okay as if you miss extremely left or right you could fly over the tree line onto an adjacent fairway, making your approach shot much easier than if you actually hit it into the trees. The rough is not that thick but it can be patchy especially around the greens. On approach shots golfers will see average sized undulating greens with runoffs and closely mown areas around the green. Bunkers and water will be in play once again on most approaches. The greens are bent grass and are average to below average in speed with a stimpmeter rating of 10.5-11.

Key Stats For The Course

***In order of importance with the most important first. Not including Strokes Gained Putting (SG:P) and Strokes Gained Tee to Green (SG:T2G), which are key stats every week.

Par 4 Scoring (P4):

Since there are twelve par 4s on the course I will be looking at P4 this week. Since 2008 25/33 golfers that finished Top 3 with recordable stats were inside the Top 90 in this stat for that specific year.

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