A strategic alliance between the PGA TOUR and DP World Tour has brought some international flavor to Kentucky for this week’s Barbasol Championship.
The first 44 names on the field list all come from the DP World Tour. That adds some excitement to the event, although the back-end of the field leaves a lot to be desired. It’s another reminder that the PGA TOUR could really use a revamping of the status structure.
Let’s jump right in and talk about the course.
Keene Trace Golf Club returns to host this event for the fourth time.
This par 72 plays to 7,328 yards and it was laid out by Arthur Hills in the late 80s.
While it’s a par 72 on the card, the pros have other ideas. The scoring average has hovered around 70 (69.8) during the previous three editions.
The rough is not too penal so golfers are able to pelt a lot of greens in regulation as long as they avoid the hazards. The field averages over 80 percent GIR from the fairway but still sits over 60% when missing the fairway.
That low penalty for a missed fairway combined with some of the easiest par 5s on TOUR, lead this to be one of the easiest scoring events all seasons.
The birdie-or-better rate for the field is over 25 percent which sits among the five easiest on TOUR, among regular stops. The bogey rate (under 13%) is also among the five easiest.
Past editions have been played on a sloppy track and it looks to be the case again this week with more storms in the forecast. More on that in a bit.
For grass, they’ll see bentgrass on the fairways and greens with kentucky bluegrass rough.
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Thursday: Cloudy with afternoon storms. A high of 91 degrees. Winds at 5 to 10 MPH.
Friday: Scattered showers and thunderstorms. A high of 92 degrees. Winds at 5 to 10 MPH.
There are storms possible on Saturday as well so this one could drag on to Monday if they get unlucky with the arrival times of those storms.
Golfers to Watch
He’s the talk of the town after posting a T4 at the John Deere Classic. He was the top college golfer last year and is proving quickly that his game translates to the big stage.
Finally ready to return from a rib injury, his body had other plans last week. He was forced to WD ahead of the John Deere Classic due to a positive COVID-19 test. He’s back in the field this week so he should be finally good to go after also backing out early from the RBC Canadian Open.
The German played his college golf at Louisville so he is very familiar with the region. He has two podium finishes in 43 starts on the pro level and arrives fresh off a T30 last week at the Irish Open.
Speaking of local comfort, Teater is the fan-favorite as a local product. He’s cashed in on that local knowledge with two top 15s in three tries at Keene Trace.
Ranking the Field
1. Kevin Streelman
2. Taylor Pendrith
3. Christopher Gotterup
4. John Huh
5. Tyler Duncan
6. Hayden Buckley
7. Taylor Moore
8. Lee Hodges
9. Adam Svensson
10. Brice Garnett
11. Patton Kizzire
12. George Coetzee
13. Michael Thompson
14. Austin Smotherman
15. Mark Hubbard
16. Greyson Sigg
17. Ryan Moore
18. Justin Walters
19. Hank Lebioda
20. Matthias Schmid