Spieth Is Pick Of The Field In Farmers Insurance
Farmers Insurance Open
He lead the field at the halfway stage last year; can Jordan Spieth go all the way in the Farmers Insurance Open this time around?
Previously known as the Buick Invitational, this is the third stop on the West Coast Swing, with a prize fund of $6.3 million. The tricky nature of the courses used makes it a tough event and it usually goes to one of the big name PGA players. It’s one of several tournaments that Tiger Woods made his own, and Phil Mickelson has also had repeat success, winning it in 1993, 2000 and 2001.
There are two courses at Torrey Pines, California and these are employed in rotation. The final two rounds are played over the South course, which, since it was altered in 2002, is by far the tougher of the two. It was the venue for the 2008 US Open and at over 7600 yards it’s one of the longest on the PGA circuit. The narrow fairways, small greens and unpredictable Santa Anita winds make it a searching test.
In The Bunker
Brooks Koepka has enjoyed a superb start to 2015. His breakthrough victory at the Phoenix Open last week propelled him into the top twenty of the world golf rankings and he’s ranked second in the PGA for driving distance. You might think his odds of 30/1 look pretty tempting, but this is his first visit to Torrey Pines and it’s asking a lot for a debutant to land this tough event. He could turn out to be one of the stars of 2015, but he won’t be winning this week.
Jordan Spieth is the antepost favourite and he looks hard to oppose.
He returned to PGA action last week in Phoenix and shook off the close season cobwebs with three steady rounds, before finding his touch to close with an excellent 65 and finish in the top ten.
He showed eye-catching form here last year, leading the field at the half-way stage and he rates as a solid bet at odds of 12/1.
Hideki Matsuyama started 2015 strongly with a third at the Tournament of Champions and after a disappointing effort in the Sony Open, returned to the top three in Phoenix, where he finished just one shot behind Koepka. That was his fourth top three finish in his last eight starts, and I think there’s more to come. He made the top twenty on his debut here last year and is competitively priced at 20/1.
Brandt Snedeker missed the cut on his 2015 debut at the Humana Challenge, but improved significantly in Phoenix, finishing off with a 66 to hold a place in the top ten, and his record in this tournament means he has to be taken seriously. He won at Torrey Pines in 2012 and has three other top-three places at the event. Now that he’s found his touch with the putter, he is a live contender at odds of 25/1.