Winner Alright: Last week’s tips: Phil Mickelson winner 11/1; KJ Choi 4th 60/1
Verizon Heritage Classic, Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head, South Carolina
2009 Brian Gay
2008 Boo Weekley
2007 Boo Weekley
2006 Aaron Baddeley
Brian Gay 20/1
The Verizon Heritage has always been a horses for courses event with form lines being pretty much thrown out the window by the winners of past stagings. Brian Gay, the defending champion missed the cut at Augusta and headed straight down to Hilton Head to prepare for his defence. Gay’s win last year was stunning, his Sunday 64 steam-rollered the field and he romped home by a full ten shots. He may have struggled slightly of late but Gay has six top 30 finishes already this year and is the straightest hitter on tour. I expect a spirited defence.
Jim Furyk 10/1
The Masters was horrible for Jim Furyk. Heavily backed beforehand Furyk left the bookies smiling as he missed the cut by nine shots. Ironically he had not missed a cut since last years staging of the Verizon Heritage Classic. Don’t let that dissuade you too much because Jim is still one of the straightest batters out there and also brings a recent win at the Transitions to the party. Furyk finished fourth in 2008 (when Boo Weekly went back to back at Hilton Head) and came second in 2005 and 2006.
Paul Casey 12/1
The word inside the ropes on tour is that Paul Casey could contend this week. You can immediately discount his Masters missed cut last week as Casey was never likely to contend after being out with yet another niggling injury. If he makes it to Thursday injury free, he will certainly be one to watch as he brings happy memories from his final round in 2009. One year ago Casey scraped into the weekend, but figured out the Harbour Town Links on Sunday, shooting a very impressive 66.
KJ Choi 15/1
What a run KJ gave us last week at the Masters. Starting the week at 60/1 he even lead for a time on the back nine Sunday until a duffed bunker shot on 13 stunted his progress. Driving the ball solidly and putting brilliantly, KJ has form in both of the categories needed to win here. Now with three top five finishes in his last four events, the question is whether KJ has the stamina to keep his form for one more week given his gruelling Masters where he played all four rounds with Tiger.
Early odds from Betfair