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Read The Line

It's not a Sprint, it's a Marathon

publishedabout 1 month ago
7 min read

FedEx delivered

The Tour Championship marks the end of the 2021-2022 season. Before the next wrap around season begins, I believe it is important to look back at our record since January.

  • In 34 events, we recorded 5 outright wins. If you bet just $10 on every winner we selected, you would be up $670 dollars since Cam Smith won the Sentry in week one.
    • Contending is important every week and in those 34 weeks we had 7 runner-ups, 25 Top 5's and 39 Top 10 finishes.
    • 44% of our outright selections finished in Top 25.
  • If you played in a One and Done league you would have done just as well.
    • In the 33 events since the Sony, our O&D selections earned three wins and well over $14.1 million dollars in earnings.
    • Consistency is the key in these contests and RTL selected 11 Top 5 and 17 Top 10 finishers.

Whether it is pre-tourney or "live" betting Thursday through Sunday, our approach is proven and engaging. Week after week we contend and sweat it out every single Sunday. Here's to a strong close for the LPGA and PGA Tour restart this fall!

How Farr will you go

The Dana Open presented by Marathon has been played at Highland Meadows Golf Club since 1989. Nestled in Sylvania, Ohio a small suburb of Toledo, the LPGA has been making history since 1984 when the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic started. This year, the Ohio fans have a super field on hand for the tournament.

  • Eight of the Top 10 in the Rolex World rankings will be there, and sixteen of the Top 25.
  • Nine of the last ten past champions are playing.

This tournament has provided some serious fireworks over the years. The Par 71 scorecard reaches 6,555 yards. With three Par 5's and six of the eleven Par 4's under 400 yards, it takes plenty of birdies to win here. In the thirty-two years at HMGC, that average winning score has been fourteen under par. When we take a closer look, things change significantly.

  • The average winning score in the last ten years is seventeen under par.
  • In the last five years, that average winning score jumps to eighteen under par.

As we get into the outrights list, you will see quite quickly our selections are birdie-making machines. Scoring is a significant factor here. Though the name implies a marathon, in recent years it has turned into more of a sprint! The last five winning scores at HMGC are 19, 15, 22, 14, and 21 under par. Let me take it one step further, last year's winning score was generated in just 54 holes! The final round was canceled due to inclement weather. Two tied for second last year at thirteen under par. Needless to say, if the weather cooperates, these ladies will need to go low to win.

  • We expect average temperatures for Toledo this week with the highs jumping up to the 80's and lows starting the day around 60 degrees.
  • There will be a little wet weather leading up to the tournament on Monday and Tuesday. There is also some wet weather predicted on Saturday night going into Sunday morning. Neither amount of rain predicted is significant.
  • Very little wind is expected this week.

Looks like conditions will be perfect for scoring. Hold onto your chairs as these ladies are about to begin the fall run to Naples and that huge CME purse! Money makes a difference and if you look at the close Jin Young Ko had in the second half of 2021, we know anyone can go crazy this fall and take it all home.

As I looked deep into this course, I was intrigued by the aggressive scoring. The course is very tight off the tee and six of the holes present penalty areas. When you think about the fact our winner will need to average more than 4.5 under par per round to win, this weekend in Ohio stands a chance to put on a tremendous showcase of women's golf.


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Nasa fast my friend

Nasa Hataoka won the 2021 Marathon Classic by six strokes. In just three rounds, she shot nineteen under par. Pretty impressive on any course, but when you start to consider the landscape of this parkland style layout, you quickly realize what aspects of your game need to be on to go low here.

  • In the 39 rounds played by the last ten winners, only four have been 70 or higher.
  • Scoring possibilities exist:
    • We have three Par 5's averaging 535 yards in length.
    • Two of the Par 3's are under 170 yards.
    • The eleven Par 4's average under 400 yards in length (392) and in fact six of them are under 400 yards.

The first thing you will see this week when you turn on the television are trees. Lots and lots of trees. Even Ottawa Hunt and Golf Club they played last week don't have this level of tree-lined landscape.

  • Twelve of the fourteen driving holes are tightly tree-lined.
  • Seven of the fourteen have fairway bunkers to avoid and six have penalty areas (water).
  • Six of the tee shots move right to left and seven are shaped in the other direction; left to right.

The winner this week will be a great driver of the golf ball. Since determining a player's prowess off the tee is statistically reliable, I feel very good about this week's outright list.

  • Why? - Off-the-tee statistics are the most reliable because all players are hitting from the same lie and place. Approach, around the green, and putting stats are measured from different places and conditions. They certainly tell a story, but overall driving stats are the most universally representative of a player's ability.

Making birdies requires hitting greens. At HMGC, that challenge is pretty unique. About one-third of the approach shots come from 150 yards or more while another third come from 100 yards or less. The lady who hits the most greens this week will have a special blend of great wedge play and mid to long iron skill.

  • Approach shot breakdown:
    • Less than 100 - 28% (5)
    • 100-125 - 6% (1)
    • 125-150 - 33% (6)
    • 150-175 - 33% (6)

We keep mentioning making birdies, but how many are needed? To shoot eighteen under par over 72-holes, the winning player will need to average 4.5 under par (66.5) for all four rounds. Keep a sharp eye on our players as they all have been selected based strongly on their ability to go low. I have looked at player Birdie %, Sub-par Holes %, Scoring Averages, and Rounds in the 60's %. The LPGA may lack a ton of stats, but what they do have are scoring stats. I use them to directly support our approach on a weekly basis.

Going low requires a hot putter, positive course history, and strong Par 4 scoring. With eleven Par 4's on the course, those ladies who play well on the most common hole will contend. I went back five years and looked at the current field to see who has the best showing in Sylvania and putting statistics. Not just the lowest putting average, but rather who makes putts when they hit the green and have an opportunity to make birdie or better.

Brooke Henderson is putting together an unbelievable season. The twenty-four-year-old superstar has two wins and eleven Top 15's in sixteen tournaments. She's fifth in Scoring Average, second T2G, and second in Par 4 scoring. She averages over 4 birdies (4.07) and 4 holes under par (4.18) per round. This Évian Champion is a killer driver of the golf ball. She wins by ball striking and this course matches up perfectly for her. In the last five years, she has had a third and eleventh place finish at HMGC. Win #3... no doubts from me.

Hye Jin Choi will win this season. Last week, she finished runner-up by one shot. Another elite driver of the golf ball, she consistently puts herself in a position to make birdie. Strokes Gained Off the Tee she's ranked sixth and fourth in hitting Greens in Regulation. She made sixteen birdies and two eagles last week in Canada. Fourth in scoring average, fourth in Par 4 scoring, and 45% of her rounds are in the 60's. Her odds show how much the bookmakers think she will win. One of the favorites in this tournament as a rookie grabs my attention and should continue to grab yours.

No PGA Tour for two weeks... time for a bonus outright, join and see them all!

Outright winners - Dana Open

Brooke Henderson (+1600)

Hye Jin Choi (+1600)

Pick 3* (+4000)

Pick 4* (+4500)

Pick 5* (+4500) - bonus pick!

(*- member content)


Tomorrowland...

The TGL was announced last week by TMRW Sports Group leader Rory McIlroy and CEO Mike McCarley. Take 30 seconds and watch the video below. So much in golf has changed in the last six months, and this announcement may outweigh it all. Together with Tiger Woods, McIlroy and McCarley are partnering with the PGA Tour to innovate the game by blending tech, golf and fans. I was in the media center last Wednesday and the reaction by everyone was positive. Stay tuned for more on this front, but I can't imagine a better platform to bet the game than this!

Click the video below to watch.


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