I would like to welcome everyone to the 2012 PGA Championship being played this week in beautiful Kiawah Island, South Carolina. We enter this week’s tournament on the heels of a thrilling win by Keegan Bradley and an excellent Sunday Payday for the golfpicks.net community. Let’s keep the ball rolling into the cup this week and go for yet another winner.
The Ocean Course will challenge, frustrate and wear the players down this week. At a staggering 7676 yards and Par 72, The Ocean Course is well known and often voted one of the most difficult tests in the United States. This is a Pete Dye designed course which means deceptive sightlines, tough bunkering and elevated greens with shaved banks. Though all these aspects will give the players problems this week, nothing will be more difficult than the wind/weather off the Atlantic Ocean.
Breezes this week are only supposed to be in the low to moderate for the Kiawah Island area but this will still have a drastic effect on the tournament. Missing greens by only small amount will result in the ball tumbling down various runoff areas and false fronts to awkward lies. The wind is also expected to dry the greens out by the weekend (very wet there currently), making accuracy even more important.
As you watch this week’s event many of the commentators will focus on the grass and bunkering. The Ocean Course utilizes Paspalum grass, a type not commonly seen on the Professional Tour. It is said to be a more carpet link grass, meaning approach shots will grab very quickly and the greens will be running at a slower Stimp than commonly seen in major championships.
The bunkering this week is another issue and will have a few players complaining I am sure. The organizers have decided to play all sand located on the outskirts of the holes (ie. Not defined bunkers) as if it were rough. This means that players will be allowed to not only ground their clubs but also take full practice swings and remove loose impediments. You can think back to recent history with Dustin Johnson as a possible explanation for this. I however feel they did this for the correct reason and that is because these sand areas are filled with rocks and debris, making them unfair for the player to treat as a bunker.
I would like to review two of my favourite holes on this course. It is not a course I know well as it rarely gets played, but I have been using flyovers and layouts to gain a better understanding of The Ocean Course. I have also been watching some of the famous 1991 Ryder Cup to help get me excited about the course and the drama that will ensue this week.
The 17th Hole – The 223 yard Par 3 17th Hole has a strong chance of deciding the tournament on Sunday. Players have no bail out area as your tee shot must carry a massive water hazard that also lines the right side of the green. If a player misses to the left they will have to deal with two very deep bunkers and some long grass. If a player hits their ball into the water it will be treated as yellow staked, meaning they will be re-teeing and hitting for 3. Good luck everyone.
The 13th Hole – I feel the 13th will play as the most difficult hole this week. At 497 yards, this Par 4 demands two very accurate shots to hit the green in regulation. A canal lines the entire right side of this hole and gives the players plenty to think about. Players will keep the ball as far left as the hole will allow off the drive, but too far left and you are in a long grass/sandy area. Then green is bunkered on the left side, giving the golfers no bail out area. A par on the 13th will be greeted with happiness from any player.
Now that you understand The Ocean Course a little better, let’s get to the players we will be cheering for. He is this week’s Six Pack looking to give us a Sunday Payday.
Steve’s Six Pack System Picks for the PGA Championship
Picks are sent to members only. We are up over 100 units this year ($100 bettors up $10,000) and I would love to help you win some money too. Visit www.GolfBanker.com today to sign up for the picks.
I will give you a sneak peak of one of the members only head-to-head picks, but won’t be giving you any look at the 6-pack system picks because it is a major tournament.
Keegan Bradley (-105) over Webb Simpson – Two players who I really enjoy watching but 1 enters playing very well and the other hasn’t played since the start July at The Greenbrier. Both men will be hitting the ball long and straight but this matchup is way off, especially the odds. Take Keegan and enjoy the win.