Heritage preview

A preview and some key stats for this week's PGA Tour event - the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head

Last Updated: 17/04/13 2:47pm

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Sky Bet

The Masters players remain on the eastern seaboard as they head 135 miles north from Georgia to South Carolina and to one of the most popular venues in world golf - Harbour Town Golf Links.

Although it remains one of the shorter layouts on the PGA Tour, Harbour Town does not lack respect among the pros.

With smaller than average putting surfaces, that are well-guarded by sand, this tight, compact venue requires precision play from tee-to-green.

The Pete Dye-construction has been ever-present on Tour since 1969 and, although it has traditionally always followed the first Major championship of the season, the tournament never fails to attract a strong field.

SELECTED PLAYERS with GOOD to REASONABLE FORM at HARBOUR TOWN

Last Eight Years

Player: '05 / '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12

Stephen Ames: 6 / - / 21 / 29 / - / 14 / 36 / 29
Aaron Baddeley: - / Won / 10 / 2 / 21 / 22 / 14 / MC
Ricky Barnes: - / - / - / - / - / 5 / 4 / MC
Jason Bohn: MC / - / 16 / 6 / MC / MC / 36 / 44
Chad Campbell: - / 36 / MC / MC / - / 35 / 14 / 24
Stewart Cink: 47 / 27 / 50 / 7 / 62 / 14 / 30 / MC
Ben Crane: 47 / 12 / 23 / 29 / 26 / - / 6 / -
Brian Davis: 25 / 59 / - / 23 / MC / 2 / 21 / 13
Jason Day: - / - / - / MC / - / 22 / 9 / -
Luke Donald: - / - / - / - / 2 / 3 / 2 / 37
Jason Dufner: - / - / MC / - / 26 / 41 / 14 / 24
Ernie Els: - / 7 / 2 / MC / 48 / - / MC / MC
Bob Estes: 22 / 68 / MC / MC / 13 / MC / - / 24
Jim Furyk: 2 / 2 / MC / 4 / MC / Won / 21 / 8
Robert Garrigus: - / - / 27 / 23 / 78 / - / 36 / 13
Brian Gay: MC / 9 / 16 / MC / Won / 32 / 36 / MC
Lucas Glover: 47 / 12 / MC / 7 / 26 / MC / MC / 69
Charles Howell: - / - / - / 12 / 37 / 22 / MC / 29
Zach Johnson: 47 / - / 6 / MC / 37 / 47 / MC / 2
Jerry Kelly: 47 / 5 / 8 / MC / Wd / 59 / 36 / 29
Matt Kuchar: 10 / - / 61 / 7 / 48 / 14 / 21 / 44
Justin Leonard: - / 47 / 16 / 17 / 48 / - / MC / MC
Pat Perez: 13 / Wd / Wd / - / - / - / 6 / -
Carl Pettersson: MC / 68 / 8 / MC / MC / 35 / 30 / Won
John Rollins: 66 / MC / - / 14 / MC / - / - / 20
Rory Sabbatini: - / - / - / - / 8 / 14 / - / 17
Webb Simpson: - / - / - / - / MC / 14 / 14 / 52
Brandt Snedeker: 47 / - / 16 / 53 / MC / MC / Won / 17
Bo Van Pelt: - / 63 / 10 / 49 / 13 / 3 / MC / MC
Scott Verplank: 10 / 21 / 59 / 53 / 21 / MC / 9 / MC
Camilo Villegas: - / MC / 29 / 7 / 37 / 5 / 36 / Wd
Boo Weekley: - / - / Won / Won / 13 / 12 / 46 / 6
Mark Wilson: - / - / 36 / 53 / 56 / - / 21 / 24

SELECTED PLAYERS with POOR to MEDICORE FORM at HARBOUR TOWN

Last Eight Years

(No Top-35 Finishes from three or more starts since 2005)

Player: '05 / '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12

James Driscoll: - / MC / - / MC / MC / MC* / 56 / 56
Jeff Klauk: - / - / - / - / MC / MC / 36 / -
Marc Leishman: - / - / - / - / MC / 41 / MC / 44
John Mallinger: - / - / MC / 49 / MC / MC / - / 37
Troy Matteson: - / MC / MC / - / MC / MC / - / MC
Graeme McDowell: 70 / MC / - / - / - / - / 61 / -
Ryan Palmer: MC / MC / 36 / - / MC / - / - / -
Chez Reavie: - / - / - / MC / MC / MC / - / 56
Tag Ridings: MC / MC / - / - / - / - / MC / -
Chris Stroud: - / - / - / MC / MC / - / MC / -
Josh Teater: - / - / - / - / - / MC / 56 / MC
Nicholas Thompson: - / - / - / 71 / 37 / MC / - / -
Johnson Wagner: - / - / MC / - / - / MC* / MC / -
Mike Weir: - / - / - / - / - / 64 / MC / MC
Charlie Wi: - / - / - / - / 62 / MC* / 73 / 52

Note: MC* - Missed additional 54-hole cut

TOP-10 Finishers at HARBOUR TOWN in 2012 (Not Listed Above)

Colt Knost: (3rd)
Kevin Stadler: (T-4th)
Matt Every: (T-8th
Charley Hoffman: (T-8th)

LOWEST 15 STROKE AVERAGES at HARBOUR TOWN

(Last Four Years - 2009/12)

Average (Rounds)

69.13: Luke Donald (16)
69.36: Brian Gay (14)
69.50: Ricky Barnes (10)
69.50: Jason Day (8)
69.63: Ben Crane (8)
69.64: Jim Furyk (14)
69.71: Carl Pettersson (14)
69.75: Rory Sabbatini (12)
69.79: Brian Davis (14)
69.81: Boo Weekley (16)
70.25: Chad Campbell (12)
70.25: Brandt Snedeker (12)
70.31: Jason Dufner (16)
70.33: Stephen Ames (12)
70.38: Colt Knost (8)

Min. No. of Rounds = 8

LOWEST ROUNDS at HARBOUR TOWN SINCE 2000

62: Davis Love (2002)
62: Peter Lonard (2005)
63: Seven times
64: 25 times

Note: The lowest score ever recorded at Harbour Town was 61 by David Frost in 1994.

Harbour Town: Par 71; 7,101 yards

Winning Totals (Last Three Years):

2012: 270 (Carl Pettersson)
2011: 272 (Brandt Snedeker)
2010: 271 (Jim Furyk)

Best bets

Brian Gay romped to 10-shot win here in 2009 and is just the sort of short-hitter who thrives on this course.

Augusta National was much too long for him but he played four decent rounds at The Masters to come tied 38th.

Already a winner on the PGA Tour this year, Gay looks a good each-way bet at 55/1.

Ernie Els played some pretty decent golf to finish tied 13th at Augusta and closed with a 69 as his game got sharper throughout the week.

He says of Hilton Head: "I love this golf course. This is a shot-maker's course. You need to work your golf ball to score well and, when you miss one of those small greens, you need a deft touch to give yourself a chance of getting up and down. That's always been a strong part of my game, which I guess is one of the reasons I've had so many top-10 finishes in this tournament."

Sponsors RBC are also very committed to Ernie's 'Els for Autism' cause (his son suffers from the disorder) and the second round has been designated as 'Autism Awareness Day' with players, fans and media being encouraged to wear blue in order to indicate their support.

Ernie will be particularly keen to perform well and the Open champ makes plenty of appeal at 50/1.

David Lynn gave the impression at Augusta National that he was very conscious of being on his best behaviour and wasn't going in for his usual pranks.

Perhaps as the week went on, that feeling of being restrained caught up with him and he went from early leader to tied 46th. Still not a bad effort though on his tournament debut.

He'll be able to relax here and with plenty of European Tour form on tight, twisty tracks like this he looks a very big price at 100/1.

Lynn says playing on the US Tour is giving him a "new lease of life" so he could thrive again in South Carolina having finished runner-up in this State in last year's USPGA.

Finally, keeping with the theme of players who had some positives at Augusta without really feeling the draining heat of contention, I'll go with Michael Thompson at 66/1.

With wind pretty much always a factor here, Thompson's ability to perform when it blows should stand him in good stead.

He won the Honda Classic in windy conditions last month and has plenty of solid coastal form.

Thompson, a runner-up in last year's US Open in San Francisco, shot a joint-best-of-the-day 67 in the final round at Augusta to finish tied 25th so he looks primed to improve on his 20th place in this event 12 months ago.

Tips:

1pt e.w. Brian Gay at 55/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Ernie Els at 50/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. David Lynn at 100/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Michael Thompson at 66/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5).

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