AT&T Byron Nelson, Trinity Forest Golf Club, Dallas, Texas
The AT&T Byron Nelson is next on the PGA Tour schedule and we have a brand new course to look forward to. The venue for this tournament is the Trinity Forest Golf Club located in Dallas, Texas. The Course opened to the players in October 2016 so very few players would have played on it previously. Built in the links style, the golf course is a 7380 yards long Par 71 that was designed by Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore.
The Trinity Forest Golf Club is similar to a links style golf course in that it does not have any trees lining the course but is unique in certain other ways. The fairways are wide and generous, the greens massive in size with plenty of undulation, and the entire course is expected to play fast and roll far.
The wind is going to be a massive factor since there are no trees to protect the holes and is, in fact, the main defense of the course. The Wolf advises punters to take a look at the tee timings and the weather just before the start of play because that can have a massive impact.
The defending champion at this year’s event will be Billy Horschel who beat Jason Day in a playoff last year. Sergio Garcia won the tournament in 2016, Steven Bowditch in 2015, and Brendon Todd in 2014.
The field for this year’s event is pretty weak with most of the top players missing. Combine this with the fact that a completely new surface awaits the players and literally anyone could win this one.
Winning this tournament will require someone who is on top of their second shot and putting. From all accounts, it appears like managing the wind and making the putts on some very difficult greens are the two main challenges players will have to overcome.
The rough around the greens is also a little thick and so putting from off the greens is not going to be possible. Golfers that scramble well will shine as well.
The wide fairways and the hard nature of the course will mean that bombers do not have any big advantage over the short hitters.
Stats that Matter
The Wolf has identified the following stats to help identify players for this tournament:
- Strokes Gained: Putting
- Ball Striking
Since this is a completely new course, the records set by previous winners are irrelevant. The Wolf advises punters to look at recent form, weigh the statistics, and try to pick players that play well in windy conditions.
The Wolf is sticking with the bookmakers for his favorite pick of the tournament, Jordan Spieth at $5.50. Spieth is playing in home conditions and has probably the most amount of knowledge about the course among the players competing here.
He is also easily the best player in this field and should be able to dominate if gets on a roll. The price being offered for Spieth is not too great but the Wolf definitely recommends having him in your betting lineup this week.
Jordan Spieth is among the best putters in the world and is probably the best scrambler in the game right now. Unfortunately, his recent form has not been too hot and he is coming off another very patchy performance at the Players Championship.
36th for Ball Striking, 183rd for Strokes Gained: Putting, and 1st for Scrambling in the field, Jordan Spieth is also the ultimate comeback kid and the Wolf recommends sticking with him.
For the value bet this week, the Wolf likes Marc Leishman at $23.00. The Aussie has been a little out of form this season but has shown signs of recovering to his best. He recorded a T9 at the Masters and a T7 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational a few weeks prior but missed the cut at the RBC Heritage and finished only T63 at the Players Championship.
He does, however, manage windy conditions well and can be very good with the putter when on song.
For the long shot, the Wolf likes Beau Hossler at $26.00. Hossler finished T2 at the Houston Open and has some experience playing on this course as well. He also finished T16 in a tough field at the RBC Heritage before having a rough couple of weeks where he was stuck around the T45-55 mark.
Beau Hossler has the right game to do well in this tournament, though. He will relish the wide fairways, is excellent on the greens, and can scramble well from difficult positions as well. The stats bear that out too as Hossler is 42nd for ball striking, 32nd for Strokes Gained: Putting, and 64th for Scrambling.
Well worth a punt at the price being offered in the Wolf’s opinion.
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