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PGA Tour: Course History, Recent Form, Course Fit….Settling the Debate Once and For All! WEEK 4

Welcome back to week 4 of our season long PGA Tour golf betting project! Had to take the week off last week as I was out of the country and either David nor Pat could figure out my excel sheet; so ‘last weeks’ results are actually from the Farmers Insurance. I’m going to re-post the project outline every week because I expect to add lots of new readers as the season goes along. If you read last week, go ahead and scroll down to this week’s bets. Under each section we’ve also added the graphs that will track the results throughout the season, leh go!

Wrong, correct, or maybe somewhere in-between…the eternal debate in DFS and DraftKings golf rages on between which of the three pillars is in fact the most predictive/has the most value: Recent Form, Course History, or Course Fit. Well why don’t we try and settle this debate once and for all with a season long golf betting system and contest?


The plan:

We take 3 head to head bets on MyBookie every week with predetermined settings for recent form, course history, and course fit. Recent Form and course history will obviously stay the same for the duration, and we’ll adjust the course fit criteria to the top 5 back-tested metrics every week. Is it perfect? No, but I think at the bare minimum we can at least see which of the 3 has the most betting value over the course of the season, and we’ll track the results all the way thru the FedEx Cup. To add another fun component to it, David, Pat, and myself will all take 1 discretionary head to head bet each week to not only see who’s the champ at the end of the year (we’ll announce the stakes on next weeks pod), but also to see if we can beat all 3 of the other systems.

The inputs behind these three setups are below, keep in mind that I want it to be as systematic as possible in order to keep as much human discretion as possible out of the results. I would love to use strokes gained data for this experiment, but unfortunately there’s still just to many gaps in the data to be consistent enough over the course of the season. (we can only get strokes gained data from 1 of 4 majors every year, no OHL, CJ Cup, CIMB, WGC HSBC, all the alternate field events, Web.com events, Champions tour, etc). Other rules:

  • if a player has multiple head to head match ups, we’ll always take the better odds match up. So for example if in one of the players match ups they are -150 and in the other they are -125, we’ll take the -125 bet. Or if they are +110 in one and +125 in another, we will take the +125 line.

  • if the same player fits multiple bets for that week, so be it

  • if there is any late change/WD/or no line, we’ll take the second highest ranked player for that system

  • we assume a flat $100 wager on every bet



Recent Form: 66% Scoring Average the last 6 calendar weeks 34% GIR

Chez Reavie! is the recent form champ for the field this week

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 0-3 (Another narrow loss as X lost to Finau by 2)

Course History: 66% course scoring average 34% # of rounds played, only going back the last 5 years

Jason Day is the course horse of the week according to the data (just edged out Spieth)

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 2-1

Course fit: 20% of each of the top 5 back-tested metrics. For the AT&T Pro Am: 1. Birdie or Better 2. Driving Distance 3. Par 4 Scoring 4. Par 5 Scoring 5. GIR

Dustin Johnson is our #1 course fit guy in an ongoing trend of the ‘best’ player in the field being the ‘best’ course fit. Justin Rose was our #1 course fit guy last time & won the event. (AND he was an underdog!)

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 2-1


The Discretionary Picks: Pat suffers his first L of the year but maintains his lead, while yours truly took a bad beat to earn a tie when we had Cam Smith at +150

David: Phil over Finau

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 1-2

Pat: Kiz over Piercy

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 2-1

Ben: Casey over Chez

Golf Betting Win/Loss Record: 1-1-1