The Northern Trust (formerly The Barclays tournament) began in 1967 as the Westchester Classic and was played at the Westchester Country Club in Rye, New York. In 2008 the Tournament left the Westchester Country Club and was rotated amongst different clubs mainly in the New York / New Jersey metropolitan area.
The Northern Trust is played in August to lead off the FedEx Cup Playoffs. The Top 125 players qualify for The Northern Trust based on FedEx Cup points amassed during the regular PGA Tour season.
As of last year, the FedEx Cup Playoffs were reduced from four events to three. The Playoffs feature a progressive cut, with fields of 125 for The Northern Trust, 70 for the BMW Championship and 30 for the Tour Championship.
The Northern Trust will cut the field to low 70 and ties after 36 holes, while the BMW Championship and Tour Championship are no-cut events.
The first two Playoff events award 2,000 points to the winner (quadruple points of regular season events), while the Tour Championship, features a strokes-based system called the FedEx Cup Starting Strokes.
The FedEx Cup points leader after the first two Playoff events will begin the Tour Championship at -10, the No. 2 player will start at -8, the No. 3 player at -7 under, the No. 4 player at -6 and the No. 5 player at -5. Players 6-10 start at -4, players 11-15 start at -3, players 16-20 start at -2 under, players 21-25 start at -1 and players 26-30 start at even par.
The player with the lowest aggregate score over 72 holes when combined with his FedEx Cup Starting Strokes will win the Tour Championship and also be crowned FedEx Cup Champion.
This year, TPC Boston in Norton, Massachusetts serves as host for the Northern Trust. The course played host to the Dell Technologies Championship (fka Deutsche Bank Championship) in the post season playoffs from 2007 to 2018.
TPC Boston is a 7,216 yard Par 71 and was originally designed by Arnold Palmer. In 2007 Gil Hanse redesigned the course with PGA Tour player Brad Faxon serving as player consultant. It is a long but easy layout with several doglegs and fast greens that are larger than the Tour average.
TPC Boston in its previous billing was one of the easier tracks of the post season playoffs. The average winning score in the Dell Technologies Championship between 2007 and 2018 was -18 (268). This means it is not a catch-up course and players will need to be quick off the mark. Henrik Stenson finished on -22 (262) when he won here in the 2013 Deutsche Bank Championship.
Players will have to hit the ground running so a good place to start is Birdie Average. With a premium on scoring, Par 5 Performance will also be important on the gettable Par 5’s. A player’s iron-play will also need to be dialled in and hitting a high percentage of greens in regulation an absolute must.
With large greens it will be important to find the right target on the green. In this regard Proximity to Hole will also be an important stat to consider in trying to find an identikit winner.
As you would expect from the FedEx Cup Playoffs this is a top-class field with a wealth of talent. Those in tune with distance and accuracy who sink their fair share of putts should thrive.
This is one those weeks to approach with caution. With such a strong field playing on a relatively easy track it is hard to separate a likely winner from the pack.
Northern Trust Betting Tips
Paul Casey 40/1 (E/W) – best result in the recent past at the Northern Trust is a solo 5th in 2017 when played at the Glen Oaks Club. His past history at TPC Boston is noteworthy, finishing solo 2nd in the 2016 edition of the Deutsche Bank Championship and T4 a year later in the Dell Technologies Championship. The Englishman’s game is in a good place at the moment underlined by his T2 finish in the PGA Championship. Features just inside the Top 30 in this week’s Stats Analysis, he is 6th on Tour for Strokes Gained Approach-The-Green and 12th for GIR. Not short on confidence, this week sets up perfectly for his aggressive play. Just needs to see a few putts drop early to get the juices flowing.
Doc Redman 125/1 (E/W) – first look at both the FedEx Cup Playoffs and TPC Boston for the 22 year old from North Carolina. Followed up a T29 in the PGA Championship with a T3 in last week’s Wyndham Championship which included a career low 63 in Round 3 (also shot a 63 a few weeks back in the Travelers Championship). Topped the pile last week in Strokes Gained Tee-To-Green, he also racked up 21 Birdies and squared only 3 Bogeys. Places just outside the Top 10 in this week’s Stats Analysis which is testament to the strength of his all-round game. Arriving hot to TPC Boston he won’t be phased by the exalted company that comes with the end of season playoffs. Recent form and skill set make a him hard to ignore at those odds.