Full preview on the blog this week will be of the Trophee Hassan II, a tournament that has produced a 33/1 and a 75/1 winner along with a 55/1 2nd place for the blog in it's last three years. What's more, mailing list subscribers last year also benefited from 100/1 first round leader tip Damien McGrane as well as good trade from Joost Luiten, who makes the 2013 Trophee Hassan staking plan again. 2011 especially was a good trading week for me here from a personal perspective.
The Trophee Hassan II is now played at the Golf Du Palais Royal in Morocco, a strange sub 7,000 yard track with five par 5s and 5 par 3s. Fairways are described as wide and contoured on the official site and greens are small, undulating and protected by deep bunkering. Some areas of the course are tree-lined and some are exposed with rough light unless you stray a long way off line, in which case it's simply take your penalty drop and move on. Arguably the biggest factors though in determining a winner are the Atlantic ocean winds and those with the ability to putt on what can be tricky greens. Winds were extremely strong at times here last year and players were yoyo-ing up and down the leaderboard, especially Joost Luiten in the earlier stages who almost had me breaking my laptop!....
2013 Trophee Hassan Picks (prices from Monday email) As always, you can follow me on Twitter: @Nicspicks for more tips and interaction throughout the golf and take advantage of up £200 in free golf bets here with Bet365
Pick #1: 1u ew Joost Luiten @ 33/1 (Stanjames) As mentioned, Joost was making birdies everywhere here last year as well as bogeys and doubles in the wind. At one stage (actually at two stages) it looked like he was going to blitz the Trophee Hassan field before the weekend even started but he tailed off to finish 44th. With a forecast of only moderate winds and with Joost rounding into form with a couple of top 30s of late, maybe we'll see more of the good side this week.
Pick #2: 1u ew Edoardo Molinari @ 35/1 (Betfred) I mentioned strong putting as a key factor in Agadir and when on form there aren't many better putters than Molinari on the Euro Tour circuit. The flat stick helped him to a 6th place at the Trophee Hassan in 2012 and it's obviously working again after a 2nd place last week. Swing is back after a wrist injury.
Pick #3: 1u ew David Horsey @ 40/1 (Stanjames) Horsey was the 75/1 winning tip at the Trophee Hassan in 2011 and he was tipped that week due to the short nature of the course and mainly his ability on the greens (ranked 16th that year in putts per GIR). 40s a little skinnier than I'd have liked maybe but after a top six last time out and listening to him on Skysports the other week, he sounds confident of another big challenge soon.
Pick #4: 1u ew Scott Jamieson @ 40/1(Skybet) Followed up a fine performance in the States by getting off to a flyer in Malaysia last week eventually finishing 17th and his game is heating up again now after a great beginning to 2013, with recent progressive form of T26 -T23 - T17. Averaging 29.42 putts per GIR in 2013.
Sleeper Watch: Quite a few bigger priced picks on the radar for the Trophee Hassan II this week including our old money spinner Rhys Davies but I've decided to go for Lee Slattery and Mikko Illonen, both 0.5pts ew at 100 and 80/1 respectively. Illonen's form here reads 7-17 and the greens and course set up may share some similarities with Cran Sur Sierre where Mikko often pops up. Slattery is rounding nicely into form with three top 30s in 4, has an early tee time and looks significantly overpriced.
Stanjames are a standout 90/1 on Lee Slattery first round leader - 0.5pts ew and 20/1 top ten on John Parry, another huge odds player that may do something this week - 1pt Parry top 10. Much appreciated if you use my aff links to sign up to SJ
Fancy some stress free betting? Up to £200 in free bets with Bet365 here
Buy Me A Beer