The RBC Heritage was first played in 1969 and is played on the Harbour Town Golf Links at the Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
Harbour Town Golf Links has been the sole venue for the event and Arnold Palmer won the first edition of the tournament. Harbour Town Golf Links along with the Ocean Course and Heron Point make up the Sea Pines Resort.
Harbour Town Golf Links was designed by golf course architect Pete Dye with the assistance of Jack Nicklaus. The course consists of narrow fairways, overhanging oaks, pines, palmettos and dark lagoons. It is a Par 71 course that is 7,101 yards from the back tees which is relatively short by Tour standards.
Harbour Town’s primary defence is its slick and firm Bermuda grass greens that are small in size. The average green at Harbour Town is 3,700 square feet while the average square footage of greens played on Tour is 6,600 square feet.
At Harbour Town Golf Links finding fairways is key and there is a demand for shot-shaping. Scrambling will also be important as the smaller than average greens will be missed. Harbour Town is very often wind-affected and an ability to play in blustery conditions is essential. Water is in play on half the holes.
Last year, CT Pan from Chinese Taipei, won his first PGA Tour title with a one stroke victory over Matt Kuchar. He closed with a final round -from 4 (67) to finish on a total -12 (272) for the week.
Pan is only the second player from Chinese Taipei to triumph on Tour, following TC Chen at the 1987 Genesis Open.
In 2018, Satoshi Kodaira prevailed in a sudden death playoff with Si Woo Kim to win his first PGA Tour title. The 28 year old Japanese golfer shot a final round 66 (71) for a total score of -12 (272).
The 2017 champion, Wesley Bryan, captured his first PGA Tour title at Harbour Town Golf Links. He had six birdies and two bogeys in a closing 67 to finish on -13 (271). Luke Donald finished a further shot back in solo second. It was his third runner-up finish in the tournament in four years.
“I’m going to remember this for a long time, I feel like I was missing greens and scrambling but still managed to make a good score of it”
Branden Grace landed his first PGA Tour event at the RBC Heritage in 2016. A look at the breakdown of his strokes gained for the tournament shows that 42% of his total strokes gained came from his short game and another 37% from his putting.
The South African’s other stats for the tournament include T39 for Driving Distance, T50 for Driving Accuracy, T14 for GIR and 10th in Strokes Gained Putting. He finished the week T1 for Birdies shooting 18 in total (including 7 on his way to a final round 66).
In 2016, Jim Furyk shot an -8 (63) in the final round to secure his place in a playoff. He held off Kevin Kisner on the second playoff hole to win his 17th PGA Tour title. He won with a combination of superb approach shots and clutch putts. He finished the week T7 in Driving Accuracy, T10 in Greens in Regulation, 11th in Strokes Gained Putting and 1st in Scrambling.
The RBC Heritage is a tricky test of golf and this week is all about accuracy over power.
RBC Heritage Betting Tips
Bryson DeChambeau 14/1 (E/W) – it is either one extreme or the other for ‘The Scientist’ at Harbour Town Links – he has two Top 5 finishes and two MC’s from four starts there. Showed no signs of rust at last week’s Charles Schwab Challenge. Around Colonial he headed the field in SGOTT, SGT2G, Driving Distance and Scrambling on his way to a T3 finish. A zero red flag game puts him on the top in this week’s Stats Analysis. He features in the Top 10 for each of the identified key performance stats for this week’s RBC Heritage. Always a short-lister each time he tees it up. Hard to ignore this week.
Matt Kuchar 40/1 (E/W) – a past champion at Harbour Town Links, winning here in 2014. His results since read 5-T9-T11-T23-2, so safe to say he knows what it takes to get it done at the RBC Heritage. Prior to the season’s hiatus he finished T22 in The Players and T2 in the Genesis Invitational. Although he doesn’t feature in the Top 30 in this week’s Stats Analysis, he is 13th on Tour for Driving Accuracy and 14th for Strokes Gained Putting – two attributes that won’t go astray this week. Okay to dismiss last week’s MC at Colonial based on compelling Event Form and skill set. Good each way shot.