Arnold Palmer Invitational

The Arnold Palmer Invitational isn’t one of the oldest events on the schedule, but it’s one of the more prestigious due to the name it now bears. The tournament started out as the Florida Citrus Open and then was the Bay Hill Invitational until 2007, when it took on the name of the legendary golfer (who won this event once, in 1971). It’s one of only five invitational events on the PGA Tour and its status is further enhanced by the fact that Tiger Woods – who doesn’t play this week due recent events – has won this event no less than eight times!

The Golf Insider scored at the tournament last year, backing the winner Tyrell Hatton at $51!

Arnold Palmer Invitational: The Course

We’re at the Bay Hill Golf Club near Orlando in Florida. Built in 1960, it was designed by Dick Wilson and Joe Lee before Arnold Palmer bought it in 1976 and improved the facility. The course started out as a par 70, but after several changes over the years – including a widening of the fairways and a reshaping of the treeline – it’s now an easier-scoring par 72 stretching over 7,419 yards.

Easier… but by no means easy!

72-Hole Record

264: Payne Stewart (1984)

18-Hole Record

62: Adam Scott (2014)

Arnold Palmer Invitational: Past Winners

2020: Tyrell Hatton
2019: Francesco Molinari
2018: Rory McIlroy
2017: Marc Leishman
2016: Jason Day
2015: Matt Every

Arnold Palmer Invitational: The Field

Reduced numbers this week as this is an invitational field limited to 120. Rory McIlroy is the $9.25 favourite with TopSport.

Arnold Palmer Invitational: The Weather

We start and finish dry, but expect rain in the middle (notably Saturday, 80% chance). Temperatures will hit the mid-70s (F) at best. Wind speeds, which were high last year, are much more benign this time around on Thursday to Saturday, but Sunday will be blustery. All told… a decent, but not ideal, week.

Arnold Palmer Invitational: Value Bets

These are two value bets from the Golf Insider. Members receive all of his best bets for all markets – win and each-way, Top 10, Top 20, Round 1 Leader and 3-Ball groups. He covers every tournament on the PGA and European Tours.

Louis Oosthuizen – each-way (currently $41 with TopSport)

The sweet-swinging South African has been trending nicely over the last few events. He was 29th at the Farmers Insurance Open, 11th in Phoenix, and then sixth last week at the WGC-Workday. His stats have progressed nicely each week ranking 55th, 25th and then 12th last week in Strokes Gained: Tee-To-Green, then add in the fact he’s putting fantastically well, and he looks a big contender this week. Oosthuizen has historically been a poor to streaky putter, but to my amazement he’s gained strokes in the field putting in every event he’s played in since the US Open last year!

In recent weeks he’s ranked fourth, twelfth and eighth in Strokes Gained: Putting, which is as good as anyone, and now he’s found his great ball-striking again Oosthuizen looks ready to win his first non-PGA major since the Open. He will also likely be spurred on by fellow South African, Branden Grace, who won in Puerto Rico last week – which should add a bit more fuel to Oosthuizen’s fire. His best finish at this event was a 9th place finish in 2015, but there’s no reason this venue shouldn’t suit this Major winner, and I expect he’ll contend if he continues to play like he has in recent weeks. He’s a solid each-way bet for me.

Cameron Tringale – Top 20 (currently $3.50 with TopSport)

Tringale continues to enjoy his best season on tour with a string of impressive displays this year. He’s registered four Top 20s, and two top 10s, from his last six starts, without missing a cut. The numbers behind his results are equally impressive with the American gaining strokes from tee-to-green on his last seven starts. His ball-striking numbers have been particularly impressive over the last two starts, ranking eighth and first in Strokes Gained: Approach. That’s a part of the game that will be crucial at this tough layout. Just two starts ago at the AT&T Pebble Beach he ranked first in Putting, which again is mighty impressive for a player who often struggles with the flatstick. Tringale has gained distance off the tee over the last 12-18 months, and it’s really paying off. His Bay Hill form is solid if unspectacular, but he has made the cut three of the four times he’s played here, and this time he arrives a much better player.

The Golf Insider is a GUN. Look at these winners, all since the start of 2020...

Martin Laird $201, Rasmus Hojgaard $151, Mark Hubbard $126, Marc Warren $101, Sam Burns $67, Tyrell Hatton $51, Peter Malnati $46, John Catlin $46, Talor Gooch $41, Harold Varner $36, Harris English $34, Robert Macintyre $31, Adri Arnaus $26, Connor Syme $26, Scott Jamieson $24, JB Holmes $21, Seamus Power $21, Dustin Johnson $21

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