USPGA Championship Preview

The final major is here in the form of the USPGA Championship. This week's golf picks are all itching to get their hands on the trophy but they will have to be on top of their game to deal with the Hazeltine golf course.

At 7674yards, it's the longest course in major history with 3 of it's 4 par 5's playing over 600 yards. Par 3's will also be key with the 4 of them averaging over 200 yards. In 2002, Hazeltine was ranked 56/57 in difficulty of the courses played on the PGA Tour. Of course, length is not the only attribute needed at the USPGA championships, where year in year out the courses are set up to give the golfers a serious test of every aspect of their game. Once again, just like last week at the Bridgestone, the cream will rise to the top.

FREE USPGA Championship golf betting picks:

Value picks

Outright E/W:
-1pt E/W Stewart Cink W/O Woods @ 40/1places 1-5(ladbrokes)Full of confidence and playing the best golf of his career, Cink can smell another major. Has his putting back to his best and been practising his short game. Butch Harmon says he fancies himself to go close again.

-1pt E/W Hunter Mahan W/0 Woods @ 25/1 places 1-6 (stanjames) Hunter Mahan could go on to be 1 of the top golfers to play the game. He has every attribute for a major win and he will get his hands on a few before he finishes and may just start this week

-1pt E/W Kenny Perry W/O Woods @ 40/1 places 1-5 (ladbrokes) The old master is desperate for a major and has the form, the game and the motivation to get it this week

-1pt E/W Zach Johnson W/O Woods @ 35/1 places 1-6 (stanjames) Good performance last week, keeps the ball in play and with the par 5's being a 3 shotter for everyone, can take advantage of his great course management

-0.5pts E/W Nick Watney W/O Woods @ 110/1 places 1-6 (stanjames) Massive price for 1 of America's biggest talents. If he gets in contention, he will stay there. Has the game to deal with the course

Overpriced outsider value picks

-0.5pts E/W Rory Sabbitini W/O woods @ 110/1 places 1-6 (stanjames) Big hitting Sabbitini had a bad final round last week but showed enough to make 110/1 worth a cheeky punt

-0.5pts E/W Tim Clark W/O woods @ 90/1 places 1-6 (stanjames) As mentioned with Z. Johnson the shorter hitters may not be at that much of a disadvantage as the pr 5's will be 3 shooter for most. Also Tim Clark is 1 of the best par 3 players in the world and top quality with the hybrid. He is very accurate and if it wasn't for his 2 shot penalty in round 3 last week, he'd have been challenging so the form is there.
Added @ 11:25 on Aug 11th 09

-1pt E/W Steve Stricker leader after 36 holes @ 33/1 places 1-5(william hill) Definitely one to watch this week. Capable of going on crazy birdie runs on ANY course and building up a big lead. Struggles to put 4 rounds together though so the 36 hole leader at better odds is the better bet.

Best prices on golf AND FREE bet @ Ladbrokes

Top 20 picks
-4pts Sergio Garcia top 20 @ 9/5 (stanjames) Putting always lets him down but he should be there or there abouts as usual in the majors with his superb tee to green game

-5pts Robert Allenby top 20 @ 3/1(skybet)Allenby probably played the best golf from tee to green last week and can bring the form to Hazeltine. Having heard that conditions are going to be playing soft and slower than usual, Allenby, who incidentally also holds the course recored here along with Leonard and Beem, is now a much stronger fancy hence the revised stake of 5pts and also worth an E/W bet W/O Woods:
-0.5pts Allenby E/W W/O Woods @ 66/1 (ladbrokes)updated @ 20:35 on Aug 12th 09

-3pts Rory McIlroy Top 20 finish @ 16/5(totesport)Big price on such a talented player. He has the ability to hang in there like all the big players and could feature this week. He also has the shot making ability needed on major courses.

-1pt E/W Jeev Milkha Sing top rest of world player @ 50/1 (general) Talented Indian has been injured of late but got a run out last week at Bridgestone where he did alright until a final round 76. He has the game and mentality for a major and there's big value in this bet.
Added @ 17:20 on 11 aug 09

-3pts Soren Kjeldsen Top Scandinavian @ 11/2 (skybet) Not much being said about Kjeldsen but the under the radar Dane may be able to take real advantage of this course set up(soft, slow and tight with small greens) and his market competitors have all been indifferent this season, with form and off field problems affecting most.
added @ 12:43pm BST on 13th Aug 2009

Tags: USPGA picks, USPGA Betting, USPGA preview
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Bryan Nicholson is the pioneer of the progressive form and course fit ratings for golf betting, with the associated progressive form model and course fit profiling model. Bryan is the author of the annual course fit profiling manual and #1 golf betting book Angles & Edges.

What is expected Strokes Gained Course Fit ?

Bryan pioneered the concept of Expected Strokes Gained Course Fit (xSGF) in golf betting. xSGF can be predicted using my model below. For prospective golf betting tips it projects ahead of time how many shots a player is expected to pick up per round on average on a particular golf course. It's weighed against a neutral golf course of the same rating.

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