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Remind me next time

Well, where to start with last weeks Players Championship. It took until 20:00pm GMT to eventually get the tournament finished, due to high wind and rain levels over the week at Sawgrass. Pardon the pun, but it really did put a dampener on the tournament for me and was a real shame the unofficial 5th major came too that.

However, after cramming a lot of golf into Sunday and Monday they managed to get the tournament complete and the eventual winner, Cam Smith did not disappoint us with an excellent display of putting on his last round. His 2nd win of the season and he looks a major champion in the making, I will be keeping an eye on his odds for the upcoming Masters for sure.

Our guys kind of fell away as the week went on – 2 missed the cut - Horschel withdrew after his 3rd round with an illness. Conners finished with a bogey free -2 round, but with the damage being done on his 3rd round he could only manage a T22 finish.

Valspar Championship Preview

Our last stop on the Florida swing takes the players a 4 hour drive back down the coast to Palm Harbour, where they’ll compete this week on the Copperhead Course at the Innisbrook Resort. The Florida swing consists of some massive tournaments and I still consider the Valspar to be one of them at the Copperhead course is no push over and promises to play long and tough as it usually does.

Copperhead Course @ Innisbrook Resort

  • Par 71, 7320 yards
  • 5 x Par 3s, 9 Par 4s, 4 Par 5s
  • Larry Packard design
  • Bermuda/Poa blend on the greens, predominant in Bermuda
  • Shot shapers course
  • 5 Par 3s all over 195 yards
  • 4 Par 5s all over 565 yards
  • Tough set of Par 4s

The first 5 holes at Copperhead will grip the player’s attention from the off this week.

The first is a 565 yard Par 5, doesn’t sound a lot but the players will be forced to hit something other than driver off the tee if they wanted to set themselves up nicely for their second shot, it is around 310 yards to the first fairway bunker, so the bombers may try and clear that, however the fairway narrows up a lot close and past that bunker so they will still have to be accurate.

The second hole is a 435 par 4 dog left right to left, that again will require a potential 3 wood from the tee, if players are greedy and pull the driver out here, there is a huge lake on the right hand side that comes very much into play if the push their tee shot.

The third hole, the players arrive at a 455 yard par 4, anything less than driver again off the tee as at around 300 yards the fairway dog legs quite harshly to the right and the very narrow fairway runs inbetween 2 water hazards, so a 3/5 wood for position off the tee to set the players up for a comfortable 180 yard approx. approach.

The guy’s long iron game will then be tested at a heavily bunkered 195 yard Par 3, hitting into a slim green.

Then they arrive at a mammoth 605 yard uphill par 5. Usually into the wind, the fairway bunker on the right of the fairway that sits at 290 yards will be more than inplay for the guys and will require an accurate tee shot if they wanted to capitalize here. A 3 shotter for all the players this week just like most the Par 5s here at Copperhead.

Overall, the fairways are narrow and tree lined, players are forced time and time again to lay up off the tee and the players are forced to move the ball both ways around this course.

Valspar Championship Previous Winners

2021 Winner – Sam Burns -17

  • 16th OTT
  • 5th T2G
  • 35th GIR
  • 14th APP
  • 30th SCR
  • 2nd PA

2019 Winner – Paul Casey -8

  • 6th OTT
  • 1st T2G
  • 5th GIR
  • 7th APP
  • 47th SCR
  • 5th PA

2018 Winner – Paul Casey -10

  • 50th OTT
  • 6th T2G
  • 30th GIR
  • 7th APP
  • 3rd SCR
  • 7th PA

2017 Winner – Adam Hadwin -14

  • 47th OTT
  • 5th T2G
  • 5th GIR
  • 2nd APP
  • 7th SCR
  • 2nd PA

2016 Winner – Charl Schwartzel –

  • 52nd OTT
  • 4th T2G
  • 10th GIR
  • 3rd APP
  • 45th SCR
  • 2nd PA

Average stats for the past 5 winners – Average Score -11

  • 34th OTT
  • 4th T2G
  • 17th GIR
  • 7th APP
  • 26th SCR
  • 4th PA

Stats to consider:

  • SG: OTT
  • SG: APP
  • Scrambling to avoid bogeys
  • Putting Averages on Bermuda
  • Par 3/5 scoring

Valspar Championship Betting Odds


Since The Players Championship finished late on Monday evening we have seen numerous withdrawals from this weeks Valspar, heres a few that have WD so far; Paul Casey, Doug Ghim, Seb Munoz, Joaquin Niemann, Taylor Pendrith, Pat Rodgers, Brandt Snedeker, Cam Young, Mav McNealy and Kevin Tway. Before the off tomorrow I expect there to be potentially a couple more. So when tipping the field, I have left it to the last minute this week because of this.

Having said that, we still had 4 of the top 10 OWGR in the field and it is isn’t a bad one at all considering we are going into a World Golf Championship next week.

Joint favourites at 9/1 we have Justin Thomas and Viktor Hovland. 5 appearances here combined, Hovland’s sole one came with a 3rd place finish last year and Thomas’s 4 visits have seen 1 missed cut but then 3 top 18 finishes. Both really good signs for 2 quality players, Hovland had his chances last week but his Achilles heel (scrambling/chipping) came to the front again and was the reason he didn’t convert enough birdie opportunities coming down the stretch. JT on the other hand is always a force to be reckoned with and is capable of winning anywhere with no weakness in his game, I would never put anyone off backing but I am not one for the favourites when it comes to tipping them.

Collin Morikawa comes next at 11/1. It is his debut here at a tough course, where I believe experience is key as the obscure set up and lengthy holes are ones that need a second look for sure. Collin’s putting and around the green work at these tricky golf courses always worry me and therefore the price this week is too skinny for me.

World Number 10, Dustin Johnson then comes in the market at 14/1. 4 appearances here, 2 missed cuts, a 6th in 2019 and a 48th last year here. A mixed bag from DJ of late, but he closed with a tie of the record at Sawgrass last week with a 9 under par 63 and he could build on that momentum coming to the Copperhead course.

In a crammed middle of the market, there are 9 players between DJ and the 33/1 mark which is too many to go into detail on; Louis Oosthuizen, defending champ Sam Burns, Xander Schauffele, Matt Fitzpatrick, Tyrrell Hatton, Shane Lowry, Abe Ancer, Brooks Koepka and Jason Kokrak.

Louis Oost I have backed a few times this year, backed him due to consistency but a lot of silly mistakes as of late in rounds for Louis and the same goes to Matt Fitzpatrick so I won’t be on them.

Defending champion Sam Burns looked good for 2 and a half round last week but an erratic driver the last 27 holes or so gave him too much to do to stay in it.

Hattonand Lowry are proper grinders and they will be there and there abouts come Sunday afternoon with them both coming off 2 weeks of good golf.

Brooks and Kokrak are last on the list, Brooks can produce anything at anytime and I can never predict what hes going too do and at a place hes only visited once and missed the cut you must question whether he favours this course having not visited this place since 2016. Kokrak now has form here, 10 appearances; 4 MCs, 14-7-58-8-2-13, known as a golf who can plod around courses hes one too like here and is the biggest odds of this list at 33/1.

The best of the rest and ones that just missed for me are; Keegan Bradley after his last round last week, Christiaan Bezuidenhout  and Aaron Wise for his ball striking run he is on currently.

Valspar Championship Prediction

Five each ways this week and 1pt each way as ever, all come from the same sort of thinking. Straight hitters, great wedge players and can have great weeks with their putters. All guys have had some great results in and around the Florida swing and have all seen this course at least once before with some success. Good Luck all!

Shane Lowry 28/1
Current form – 13-2-14-24-9
Course form - 49

Abraham Ancer 30/1
Current form – 33-39-43-8-40
Course form – 16-5

Alex Noren 45/1
Current form – 26-5-48-6-39
Course form - 21

Russell Knox 66/1
Current form – 6-55-33-33-33
Course form – MC-25-33-56-MC-16-24-21

Kevin Kisner 66/1
Current form – 4-MC-38-MC-3-8
Course form – MC-60-24-MC

Valspar Championship Betting Tips