We now move to the Valero Texas Open played at beautiful TPC San Antonio. This is the 2nd week after the Masters and once again most of the players will take this week off. The top ranked player this week (World Golf Rankings) will be Matt Kuchar at number 15. Though it is an extremely week field, I do see an excellent opportunity to grab yet another winner.
Located in San Antonio, Texas, this course has only been the home of the Valero Texas Open for 2 years. TPC San Antonio is a 7522 yard Par 72 course that demands a player’s full attention and creativity. With a plethora of different holes and ways to play the golf course, fans should be treated to another very exciting week.
The course only features 3 water hazards and 58 bunkers (though they are placed very well), but instead utilizes the player’s difficulty to hit fairways and greens. Course designer Greg Norman did an excellent job making the course a test for the Tour professionals. With windy conditions expected this week, put a premium on Driving and ability to hit Greens in Regulation.
The most difficult hole on the course is the 454-yard 1st hole. A Par 4 to begin the players round that will test them right out of the gate. The average score here over the last 2 years has been 4.341, meaning most players will be thrilled to walk away with a par.
The easiest hole on the course over the past 2 years has been the Par 5 14th. This hole has played to a stroke average of 4.684 and is a must birdie on this course. At 567 yards it is the shortest of the Par 5’s, and with an accurate drive most players will go for it in 2.
With very little top end talent, the field is a little more wide open than most weeks. This means we can find some value with players who have played well this year but have not won. We will also look into players who have previously played well at TPC San Antonio.
Brendan Steele will return to defend his championship along with a slew of young talent. With 41 players who are under the age of 30 competing this week, I am sure there will be a few players most people will not recognize.
Look for mistakes to happen as some players have not played TPC San Antonio before. Also players from the Texas area tend to thrive when playing in their home state.
Valero Open Outright Winner and Head-to-Head Picks
Like always the full set of picks will be sent out to members only. You can visit www.GolfBanker.com to sign up for a membership and get access to all 9 picks this week (my 6 pack system picks + 3 head-to-head picks).
Below I will give you a sneak peak at one of my 6-Pack System picks:
JIMMY WALKER 50 TO 1 – We are going with a Texas Resident at 50 to 1 for this selection. Jimmy is a very interesting golfer. His best finish on the PGA Tour for his career is 3rd place. He does have the talent to win a tournament, however his head seems to get in his way. I feel that playing very close to home (lives in San Antonio) will greatly help Jimmy’s mental game this week.
This season has gone very well for Jimmy so far, having finished in the Top 10 three times already. He ranks 38th in strokes gained through putting, 13th in bounce back, and inside the Top 25 for putts within 10 feet. Jimmy needs to keep the ball in the fairway this week as he ranks 171st on Tour in driving accuracy. He missed the cut here last year due to poor driving but managed a T3 finish in 2010. That year he was absolutely lights out with the flat stick, something I expect once again this week. Plenty of crowd support will be behind this Texan.