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Golf

Zurich Classic Preview

The Zurich Classic is very different from every other PGA tournament because it is a two person team tournament in which they play two rounds of best ball and two rounds of alternate shot.

The PGA Tour moves to Louisiana this week to tee it up at TPC Louisiana in an unusual format for the PGA Tour. The Zurich Classic is very different from every other PGA tournament because it is a two person team tournament in which they play two rounds of best ball and two rounds of alternate shot.

So when choosing a winner for this week, you want to choose the worst player. For example, if Dustin Johnson was playing with a Ernie Els and you like them to win this thing – then for the one and done format you would pick Ernie Els. That way, you don’t have to waste Dustin Johnson.

This format for the Zurich is in Year 3, the change was made to get more big names here. There is also a different cut line here, only the top 35 teams and ties make the weekend.

Purse: $7,500,000

Champion: $1,080,800 (each player of winning duo)

TV Schedule

  • Thursday April 25th: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM CT on Golf Channel
  • Friday April 26th: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM CT on Golf Channel
  • Saturday April 27th: 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM CT on Golf Channel
  • Saturday April 27th: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM CT on CBS
  • Sunday April 28th: 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM CT on Golf Channel
  • Sunday April 28th: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM CT on CBS

Weather

Whose Teeing Off

Jason Day (left) & Adam Scott (right), two Aussies playing together for the first time here.

There’s a good number of bigger names here, which is what the people running the Zurich wanted when they changed this format. We’ll list some of the notable teammates here to give you an idea about whose teeing it up here.

  • Jason Day & Adam Scott
  • Tommy Fleetwood & Sergio Garcia
  • Brooks & Chase Koepka
  • Patrick Reed & Patrick Cantlay
  • John Rahm & Ryan Palmer
  • Bubba Watson & JB Holmes
  • Tony Finau & Kyle Stanley
  • Louis Oosthuizen & Charl Schwartzel
  • Henrik Stenson & Graeme McDowell
  • Billy Horschel & Scott Piercy
  • Kevin Kisner & Scott Brown

Recent History

Billy Horschel (left) & Scott Piercy (right) with the Zurich Classic Trophy and Belts for winning in 2018.

This will be the third year of this format so we only have two years of data to look at. Here are the pairs that won the past two years, and the runners up also.

  • 2018: Billy Horschel/Scott Piercy (-22)
    • Runner Up: Jason Dufner & Pat Perez (-22)
  • 2017: Jonas Blixt & Cameron Smith (-27) (Playoff)
    • Runner Up: Kevin Kisner & Scott Brown (-27)

The other problem we have here is some of these duos haven’t played together before. For example, we have no idea how Adam Scott and Jason Day will play together. For those that have played together in this event though, we’ll list how they did in recent years.

  • Brooks & Chase Koepka: T5 (2017)
  • Patrick Reed & Patrick Cantlay: T7 (2018), T14 (2017)
  • Bubba Watson & JB Holmes: T5 (2017)
  • Kevin Kisner & Scott Brown: T2 (2017), T15 (2018)

The Course

TPC Louisiana is a 7,425 yard Par 72 course that sits just south west of the heart of New Orleans, just on the other side of the mighty Mississippi River. This course was designed by Pete Dye with some help from Steve Elkington and Kelly Gibson. There are plenty of water and bunker hazards here, with over 100 bunkers and five different ponds that players have to avoid. Let’s take a look at some notable holes here.

Hole #3: 221 Yard, Par 3

A long Par 3 early on that is protected by water all the way up and to the back, with bunkers on the front and each side to give players lots of trouble. This is also one of the biggest greens on the course that has a lot of movement to it.

Hole #14: 216 Yard, Par 3

Decently long Par 3 on the back that depending on where they put the tees can play as short as 167 yards. What’s different about this Par 3 compared to the others? It’s the only one that doesn’t have water in play. A huge bunker protects this hole to the front, and there is also one lying to the back.

Hole #16: 355 Yard, Par 4

Zurich has many short Par 4’s and this is one of the shortest, that is actually open for guys to get to in one shot. There a bunkers they’ll have to hit over, and water to the left and back of the green to worry about. There is also a bunker on the right hand side. Most players will probably pull out a long iron or hybrid and avoid the bunkers to the left for the short approach shot in.

Hole #18: 585 Yard, Par 5

The finishing hole at Zurich is a beauty. A long par 5 that features water all the way up the right hand side. There are tons of bunkers on this hole, not only surrounding the green but on that may come into play on the second shot for players if they are laying up.

Picks

One & Done: I hate him but I’ll go with Patrick Reed (& Patrick Cantlay) here. Guys have played in this tournament twice and finished top 15 both times. Also, Patrick Cantlay has been playing very good golf as of late. No reason to think their success won’t keep on keeping on here.

Betting Winners, Top 5, Top 10: Watson/Holmes (+1800), Schwartzel/Oosthuizen (+2500), Kisner/Brown (+3200)

The odds for these guys are to win. For each of these teams they all have one thing in common: they’ve all finished top 15 here before. The South African team and Kisner/Brown have played here together twice now. Last time Watson/Holmes played together was in 2017 where they finished T5. There’s no reason to think these teams won’t play well and should contend to win, if not finish in the top 10 of this puppy.

One & Done History: Well Beave got us back in the money last week, barley. Schauffele had a chance on Sunday to make a move up the leader board, not win but at least make some good money. Instead he went the opposite way. We suck.

  1. Waste Management Open: Matt Kuchar – $293,467 (T4)
  2. Pebble Beach Pro-Am: Shane Lowry – $0.00 (Missed Cut)
  3. Genesis Open: Hideki Matsuyama – $177,600 (T9)
  4. WGC-Mexico: Jon Rahm –$65,000 (T45)
  5. The Honda Classic: Sergio Garcia – $183,700 (T9)
  6. Arnold Palmer Invitational: Rickie Fowler – $35,000 (T40)
  7. The Players: Jason Day –$350,000 (T8)
  8. The Valspar Championship: Webb Simpson – $0 (Missed Cut)
  9. WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Brooks Koepka – $53,000 (T53)
  10. Valero Texas Open: Bud Cauley – $0 (Missed Cut)
  11. The Masters: Paul Casey – $0 (Missed Cut)
  12. RBC Heritage: Xander Schauffele – $15,559
  13. Zurich Classic: Patrick Reed –
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