GOLF analyst Lewis Blain (@LewisBlainSport) shares his betting thoughts ahead of the Safeway Open from Napa.
Safeway Open | 26th-29th September 2019 | Sky Sports
The PGA Tour's new season has been back for a couple of weeks now so it seems a good time to get into the swing of things with the Safeway Open.
Silverado CC is the host, a par 72 which stretches 7,166 yards. Tight. Tree-lined. Parklands. There's penal rough and water with a tester on the greens as they are slower than the norm and they are POA too.
This week tests a player's all-round game, but scrambling has tended to be a key factor. We'll be looking for top ball-strikers as we normally do, ones that can score on par-5s and scramble well.
Recent form is a factor and so is form on several correlated courses – Quail Hollow, Torrey Pines, Riviera, TPC Scottsdale, and TPC San Antonio particular standout.
Chez Reavie (40/1 Betfair)
Reavie pops on pretty much every metric here over the last eight or so tournaments.
Previously he was known as a bottler/someone who doesn't win but that changed last season when he clinched the Travelers Championship. He contended at East Lake to finish T5 which is a subtle correlation to here and has always appeared at TPC Scottsdale.
This seems right up his street.
Dylan Frittelli (45/1 Betfair)
Next up is another player that has won in recent times on Tour by claiming the John Deere Classic, he hasn't gone off the boil as some first-time PGA winners tend to do by finishing T6 last week in the Sanderson Farms.
Frittelli ranks first currently for SG:T2G in this new season. He made his PGA debut here last season and finished 25th so he now comes back with a win under his belt and some course knowledge too.
Having followed him quite a lot on the European Tour, he's exactly the sort of ball-striker that can thrive around here. He made cuts at many of the correlated courses which is a benefit considering it was his first across the pond.
Harold Varner III (70/1 Betfair)
Continuing with the theme of good ball-strikers, HV3 is next up and he will surely clinch his maiden PGA Tour title sooner rather than later.
His course form swung it for me as at various stages over his last handful of visits he's featured amongst the top-ten with a best finish of T14 last year. His game has only improved since then too.
He warmed up nicely two weeks ago with a top-20, having even finished T3 in the Northern Trust FedEx playoff event last season.
Bud Cauley (70/1 Betfair)
Cauley is someone that has had to battle back from injury, quite a serious one in fact as a car accident ruled him out for a number of months. He's maybe lucky to even be here this week on that basis.
A year after the incident he was contending at the Memorial before slipping to a T9, but he's also shown glimpses at other tournaments including the Honda and the Greenbrier last time out. He's done well at Torrey Pines, Quail Hollow and at TPC San An.
He could well miss the cut, but he's worth a chance at these odds this week.