Top Ten Finish Fest – The Masters 2015 Trends
Trends can provide vital clues as to who back for the Masters. Read all you need to know below…
Form Is Temporary
Surprisingly, form going into the Masters is not that important. None of the last nine winners of the Arnold Palmer Invitation or the Houston Open have gone on to win at Augusta. However, each of the last twenty-three Masters winners had registered a top ten finish in the calendar year and the last twelve had all bagged more than one top ten finish prior to Augusta.
Between 1980 and 1999 there were eleven European winners of the Masters, but none of the last fifteen have hailed from this side of the Atlantic, although its worth noting that South African golfers have done particularly well in Augusta providing two winners and nine top five finishers in the last ten.
If You’re Old Enough…You Might Be Too Old
This is not a tournament for veterans or rookies. Of the fifteen winners of the Masters this century, none have been younger than 25, and none older than 39. The last player over 40 to wear the green jacket was Mark O’Meara in 1998, so you should steer clear of three times Master winner, Phil Mickelson, at 43.
I’ve Been Here Before
Previous experience of Augusta is important. Although Jason Day came close on his debut in 2011, only three debutants have won the Masters since its inception, the last being Fuzzy Zoeller in 1979. Two appearances at Augusta seems to be the minimum level of experience required, which would rule out 35/1 shot Patrick Reed.
Don’t Ditch The Long Shot
It might seem wise to concentrate on those at the head of the market in a tournament as competitive as this, but this would be a mistake. Four of the last eight winners at Augusta started at triple figure prices, and 2012 Masters winner Bubba Watson was priced at over 50/1 when the tournament began.
It’s Hard To Defend
It is a rare player who is able to defend their Masters title. Only three have ever managed it and they happen to be all time greats: Jack Nicklaus, Nick Faldo and Tiger Woods.
Stats, Stats, Stats
Long hitting is one of the keys to success at Augusta, so it’s not a surprise to find that the last six winners were all inside the top 60 on the PGA Tour for driving distance and averaging over 290 yards every time they teed off.
Applying these trends leaves us with a balanced short-list of five including Dustin Johnson, Jason Day and Adam Scott, along with Major winner Keegan Bradley at 80/1 and a lively 100-1 outsider in Ryan Palmer, who finished in the top ten on his last Masters appearance in 2011.