Wednesday, June 20, 2018

What To Look For: 2018 Travelers Championship

The PGA Tour comes back to Hartford for the 66th Travelers Championship:


TPC River Highlands was created in 1928 and was designed by Robert Ross and Maurice Kearney and was originally called Middletown Golf Club. Later, it changed its name to Edgewood Country Club in 1934. The course went thru a re-design by Pete Dye in 1984 as was renamed TPC of Connecticut. It then went thru further renovations from Bobby Weed (one of my personal favorites) along with Howard Twitty and Roger Maltbie and changed its name to TPC River Highlands.

The course is well received by the players. Perhaps due to the much needed break from the US Open. However, I do not find it surprising as a lot of the Pete Dye courses I’ve played that were later tweaked and renovated tend to be very good. Dye has a lot of good ideas, but tends to go overboard…particularly with blind tee shots where it’s difficult to get a feel for the line.

TPC River Highlands is pretty straight forward. It’s a course for good drivers that leans towards power off the tee and then is about mid-length iron shots. Get those two areas of the game down and you’ll likely get into the top-20 even with poor putting.

The big hole that the telecast will focus on is the par-4 15th hole that only plays to 296 yards. And it is a ‘critical hole’ at Hartford. However, it’s not exactly my favorite type of reachable par-4 design as it’s pretty straightforward in that any player should go for the green.

Here’s the data of tee shots from #15 last year. It appears there were only 7 layups, each resulting in par.



The last critical hole is the devious 17th hole where water comes into play on the tee shot and the approach. This should be the hole that gets a lot of attention because it is what separates the contenders versus the rest of the field




Projected Winning Score: -15


3JACK’S FAVORITES

Justin Thomas +1,200
Paul Casey +2,000
Bryson DeChambeau +2,500
Emiliano Grillo +4,000


3JACK’S DARK HORSE PICKS

Kyle Stanley +6,000
Chez Reavie +6,600
Keegan Bradley +6,600
Brendan Steele +6,600
Kevin Streelman +10,000
Pat Perez +10,000




3JACK

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