Just two weeks after the 2021 PGA Tour season ended in earnest, the 2022 season has begun. and our first stop is the Fortinet Championship at Silverado Country Club. Previously known as the Safeway Open, the re-branded tournament is a stalwart of the schedule and is sure to offer a smooth start to the new season. With a somewhat weaker field than we have been used to, and the surprise inclusion of Jon Rahm in the week running up to the Ryder Cup, I have picked out three value plays that could get us off to a flyer. But first…
Fortinet Championship details
Venue: Silverado Country Club, California, USA
Date: September 16-19 , 2021
Course stats: Par 72; 7,123 yards
Course summary: This scoreable track is relatively short by PGA Tour standards, so expect a few fast starts. The tree-lined parklands boasts tight fairways and penal rough, while closely mown run-off areas will punish wayward approach shots. Missing the fairways here will be a big disadvantage, but as we can see by previous winners of this event, there is success to be had for a big hitter too.
Defending champion: Stewart Cink (-21)
Fortinet Championship TV times
Thursday: Sky Sports – Red Button from 3pm; Sky Sports Golf from 5.30pm; Sky Sports Main Event from 11pm
Friday: Sky Sports – Red Button from 3pm; Sky Sports Golf from 5.30pm
Saturday: Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event from 11pm
Sunday: Sky Sports Golf from 11pm
BMW Championship betting tips
Bazza’s Banker: Kevin Na @ 20/1 with Bet365
After missing out Steve Stricker’s Ryder Cup team, Na will be looking to continue his incredible run of form with a sixth PGA Tour title.
Na has been on fire recently, with two runner-ups and a third-place finish in his last six events. Even more impressively, his consistency has been just as good, with five top-20 finishes in his last six events.
Na ranks 6th for SG: Total in the last three months, excelling with his short game and turning good performances into great results. At this price, in a weak field, Na is the pick of the rest when you exclude the overwhelming favourite.
The each-way bet: Harry Higgs @ 80/1 with Bet365
Higgs had a great end to the last PGA Tour season, with a couple of respectable performances in the FedEx Cup Play-Off events and he will arrive at Silverado full of confidence.
A T16 finish at the Northern Trust was sandwiched between impressive performances at the Wyndham and the BMW Championships, and despite a run of for missed cuts prior to those events he is reaching a part of the calendar where he tends to play well.
A runner-up finish at this event last season suggests he has a great chance of challenging, and when you consider that he ranks 3rd for SG: Around-the-green and 15th for SG: Putting in the last 30 days he really does look to be overpriced.
The outsider: Aaron Rai @ 125/1 with Bet365
With a PGA Tour card secured for the new season, Englishman Rai will be looking to start with a bang and this is an event he should have success with.
On the European Tour, Rai ranks 9th for GIR and 7th for scrambling, with his accuracy off-the-tee also impressive and very useful here.
Rai is an accurate, consistent ball-striker, all of which are key components for success at Silverado, and after a 14th place finish at Wentworth last week I can see him going close at a big price.
For more prices visit Bet365.