AT&T Byron Nelson Betting Tips & Preview – Thursday 17th May 2018

The AT&T Byron Nelson is a stalwart on the PGA Tour. Played under various names, the tournament was first held in 1944 and was won by the man after whom it is now named. However, it’s all change this year as it moves from long time host, TPC Four Seasons to a brand new course, Trinity Forest.

Trinity Forest was designed to be a links style golf course. It’s not quite in the style of the traditional links of the UK or Ireland but it will test the field in terms of strategy, short game and approach play. Branden Grace is one of the best proponents of links golf around and his late decision to play at the AT&T Byron Nelson is very interesting. He’s well placed to further enhance his links golf pedigree and looks a very good price at 25/1 with Ladbrokes.

Top Tips

Branden Grace @ 25/1

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Course Info

Trinity Forest is perhaps the most ironic name for a golf course in the world given that there are no trees on the entire layout. Designers, Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, made the most of the undulations of the former landfill site and strategically placed 88 bunkers. Jordan Spieth is a member of Trinity Forest and he says while it does replicate some of the challenge of links golf, he doesn’t think it requires playing along the ground like St Andrews so approach play is a key skill to look out for this week.

CourseLocationLengthPrize Money
Trinity Forest Golf Club Dallas, Texas 7,380 Yards $7,500,000

Recent Winners

Billy Horschel returned to the winner’s circle with victory at TPC Four Seasons last year. He was the second straight winner to triumph via a playoff after Sergio Garcia won the Byron Nelson for the second time in 2016. Steven Bowditch was a shock winner in 2015 when heavy rains played havoc with the tournament. It’s worth noting the starting prices for the last five winners which were 125/1, 25/1, 500/1, 100/1 and 150/1.

YearWinnerCourseTo ParWinning Margin
2017 Billy Horschel TPC Four Seasons -12 Playoff
2016 Sergio Garcia TPC Four Seasons -15 Playoff
2015 Steven Bowditch TPC Four Seasons -18 4 Strokes
2014 Brendon Todd TPC Four Seasons -14 2 Strokes
2013 Sang-moon Bae TPC Four Seasons -13 2 Strokes

Analysis: Links Golf Proponents to the Fore

Trinity Forest was designed with the aim of hosting a major championship. It certainly plays firm and fast enough to suggest that the US Open could head to Dallas in the coming years but the PGA Tour have ensured that it’s not quite that tough this year. The course has been heavily watered and the run off areas around the green softened so we could see some very good scoring on this tough track. That said, it’s still going to play into the hands of the best links golf proponents even if the wind is forecast to remain relatively modest.

Grace the Standout Bet at the Head of the Market

As we’ve seen, the AT&T Byron Nelson has produced some big odds winners in recent years but it’s all change with the new venue. While outsiders still have a chance given the relative weakness of the field, Branden Grace is one of those towards the top of the betting who it could well pay to get onboard.

Grace’s links pedigree includes winning the RBC Heritage on the PGA Tour and the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship on the European Tour. He’s also won in the Middle East twice and finished sixth at the 2017 Open Championship. Grace also has the so-called ‘nappy factor’ having recently welcomed his first child, Roger, into the world. Grace has all the ability to win many more times on the PGA Tour and can utilise his links ability to full effect this week in Dallas so back him to win at 28/1 with Ladbrokes.

Piercy to Bounce Back from Double Disappointment

Like every player who missed the cut at last week’s Players Championship, Scott Piercy was disappointed with his game at TPC Sawgrass. That was the second missed in a row for the 39-year-old but there is every chance he’ll bounce back at Trinity Forest. Piercy tops the PGA Tour for strokes gained approaching the green this season. That’s an area of the players’ games which will be very well tested at Trinity Forest so providing he finds something with his putter, Piercy could well return from an each way bet at 66/1 with Coral.

Snedeker Hoping the Wind Will Whip

In winning the 2016 Farmers Insurance Open, Brandt Snedeker shot one of the most incredible final rounds in PGA Tour history. While his opponents were battered by the winds and almost literally blown away, Snedeker somehow managed to shoot under par at Torrey Pines. That hammered home just how good Snedeker is in the wind and while it will be nowhere near that gusty this week, he has a real knack for playing golf in links conditions. While many will struggle with Trinity Forest, Snedeker will relish the challenge and is worth each way support at 50/1 with Betfred.

Final Verdict: Branden Grace to win

There are several links golf specialists worth considering for AT&T Byron Nelson glory this week. Jordan Spieth is one such player and his finish to the Players Championship suggest something special could be around the corner. However, Spieth doesn’t quite look as tempting a bet as Branden Grace at 28/1. Piercy and Snedeker must put missed cuts behind them but they also have a very good chance of contending.

About

The AT&T Byron Nelson is one of the more iconic events on the PGA Tour. It's been running since 1944, which also makes it one of the oldest. It's recently moved to the Trinity Forest Golf Club, based in Dallas, Texas. It's also the only metropolitan place on the tour that holds two PGA events, such is the popularity of the sport within Texas.

The renaming of the tournament to include Byron Nelson's name took place in 1968 and whilst it's seen several sponsors over the years, the name has always included that of Byron Nelson as well. Many people still simply call it "The Byron Nelson" much to sponsors frustration, but such is the heritage of the tournament.

Whilst many tournaments work hard with their charitable work these days, there are few that have been more successful than that of the Byron Nelson. Over the years, the tournament has raised a staggering $143million for charities within Texas and even across the US. Whilst the golf is important, the set up to make sure these funds keep coming is quite something and work continues for 12 months of the year, although admittedly is ramped up around the time of the tournament.

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