Desert Classic betting tips & predictions – the Desert Classic, formerly known as the CareerBuilder Challenge, Humana Challenge and Bob Hope Classic, is played each January in California. The tournament forms part of the early season West Coast Swing and is well known for its celebrity pro-am.
In 2012 the tournament changed its format from having five rounds to a traditional four round tournament. The event is played over three different courses. The TPC Stadium Course and the Nicklaus Tournament Course at PGA West will serve as two of the three courses. Long-time tournament mainstay La Quinta Country Club completes the course rota for the tournament.
The Par 72 Pete Dye-designed TPC Stadium Course will serve as the host course.
The Stadium Course’s infamous 17th hole is known as “Alcatraz” and has an island green that was inspired by the 17th at TPC Sawgrass.
The Pro-Am format is played for the first 54 holes. Each of the professionals will play with a different amateur partner each day on different courses for the first three days. On Sunday, the low 70 professionals and ties will play the final round at the TPC Stadium Course.
Historically, courses used in the Desert Classic rank among the easiest annually on the PGA Tour. As with previous editions, those players who wish to contend will need to be aggressive with their approach play, hit the ball close to target and drain plenty putts. Key statistics this week will be Proximity to Hole, Strokes Gained Putting and Birdie Average.
Last year, Jon Rahm beat Andrew Landry on the fourth hole of a playoff to win his second PGA Tour title. He closed with a final round -5 (67) at the Stadium Course to finish on -22 (266).
The Spaniard’s play from the tee and on approach around the Stadium Course laid the foundation for his victory gaining almost 6 strokes over the two rounds on the field average. He finished T28 for Driving Accuracy, 5th in Driving Distance, T20 in GIR and 8th in Putts per GIR.
In 2017, Hudson Swafford won his first PGA Tour tournament at the Desert Classic beating Adam Hadwin by one shot. On his way to victory Swafford was 1st in Strokes Gained Off-The-Tee and 5th in Strokes Gained Approach-The-Green. Combined these stats yielded a gain of 7.48 strokes over the field average for the two rounds on the Stadium Course. He finished the week T61 in Driving Accuracy, 5th in Driving Distance, T1 in GIR and 24th in Putts per GIR.
In 2016, Jason Dufner prevailed in a playoff with David Lingmerth after shooting -25(263) in regulation play. Lady luck played her part in Dufner’s win with an incredible up-and-down in regulation play at the aforementioned “Alcatraz”.
Dufner finished the week T49 for Driving Distance, T5 for Driving Accuracy, T15 for GIR, 14th in Strokes Gained Putting. He was also T18 in Proximity to the Hole and T40 for Scrambling.
This week is a crapshoot and definitely one to approach with caution. Best advice is to keep bets small or have a bet in running after 36 | 54 holes are completed.
Desert Classic Betting Tips 2019