Days removed from Bryson DeChambeau capping off his first major title in emphatic fashion at the U.S. Open, the PGA TOUR trudges along with a more familiar-looking field for a fall swing event.
This week, the Corales Puntacana Resort and Club Championship is the stop in the Dominican Republic. This marks the first occasion the TOUR has left the United States since the restart.
Corales Golf Club hosts the event for the fifth time, and 2020 marks its third year as a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event. The first two iterations were part of the Korn Ferry Tour schedule.
Corales is long, measuring at 7,670 yards for a par 72. Despite that length, previous champions have typically been shorter hitters who caught fire on the greens. Graeme McDowell and Brice Garnett won the two PGA events, while Nate Lashley and Dominic Bozzelli were the Korn Ferry winners. None of those four golfers are known for their length.
There isn’t really anything about the course that should cause the pros a whole lot of trouble. It’s on the ocean, and the wind can pick up; but barring some pretty strong gusts, the winner should threaten 20-under par this week.
In the past this was a Korn Ferry event and if you looked at the top of the betting odds, you might assume it still is.
Korn Ferry Tour points leader Will Zalatoris opened as the +1200 favorite this week fresh off at sixth-place finish in the U.S. Open. Zalatoris is as good of a ball-striker as anyone in this field, and the only thing preventing him from earning the three-win promotion on the PGA’s developmental tour is his putter. On a week where hot putters tend to reign supreme, I’ll steer clear of the top, as usual.
Right behind Zalatoris is the Canadian duo of Corey Conners (+1600) and Mackenzie Hughes (+1400). Hughes finished in second place at this event last year behind McDowell.
Sam Burns (+1800) is the only other player under +2000. He’s been on a few of my cards over the past couple months and was a guy I backed at +5500 in last year’s Corales Puntacana Championship. But, his price hike up to +1800 is just a little too steep for me.
Henrik Stenson, Charles Howell III and Emilano Grillo wrap up this segment of the board at +2500 each. Stenson is the most recognizable name in the field, but he hasn’t played well at all in 2020.
We’ll take a few shots in this range, starting with Adam Schenk at +4500 on Fanduel. Schenk doesn’t have any high-end finishes on the resume recently, but he’s quietly been playing solid golf. He’s made seven straight cuts and is the only player in the field to make all four cuts in this event.
I’ll also go with Will Gordon at +6600 at Bet365. Gordon has shown the ability to contend on the PGA Tour on a few occasions this year. He’s a great driver and fits the type of golfer I’m looking to back if we’re going to buck the trend of shorter hitters winning on a 7,600-yard course.
I’ll also be keeping an eye on Pat Perez, Denny McCarthy and Henrik Norlander. If their odds slide back into the +5000 range, they could be worth a look as a live add as well.
After four events here, it’s really just been the mid-tier players coming out on top. But with that said — and with many of the top names absent this week — there are a few guys whom I’ll take a chance on in this range.
I’ll open this section with Patton Kizzire at 125/1. Kizzire usually has a strong short game but struggles off the tee. Corales is one of the easier driving courses that these guys will see all year. So, I’ll take a chance on Kizzire catching a hot putter on these Paspalum greens — the same surface as his last win at the OHL Classic in Mexico.
I’ll also take a flier on Rafael Campos at 500/1 (Bet365). Campos is a Puerto Rico native who tends to play his best in the Caribbean. Notably, he finished third at Corales Golf Club three years ago when this was still a Korn Ferry event. Any time Campos heads to the island events, he’s worth looking at for a top-20 play.
The Corales Card
- Adam Schenk +4500 (.73 units)
- Will Gordon +6600 (.5 units)
- Patton Kizzire +12500 (.26 units)
- Rafael Campos +50000 (.07 units)
Total Stake: 1.56 units