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23rd April 2024 7:03 am

“A difference of opinion is what makes horse racing and missionaries."

The Mexican Open

These Donors Are AMAZING Thank You

William S – MEJi – Peter N – Nigel B – Ken C – Mark S – James D – William M – Fiona M – Julian A – Jonathan H – Mrs V.M – Pete BN – Gavin C – Thom S – Sarah C – Mark S – Sam H – James R

Sandy Lane has sent a note, along the lines that the Weights of the Grand National or even Fontwell on a soaking Thursday were considerably more interesting than this weekend’s  PGA offering – The Mexican Open  – and that he was not sure that this event was the “full enchilada”. So I thought I would get my trusty 7 iron out of the bag and take a few practice swings myself.

This will be the third year at Vidanta Nuevo Vallarta a par-71 at more than 7,400 yards and features flat terrain with plenty of water hazards in play throughout. The rough isn’t all that thick, the bunkers are small, and the fairways are wide, meaning it’s a scorers’ paradise this week. Interestingly enough, there are five par-3s and four par-5s, leaving only nine par-4s, which is rare for a par-71 golf course. The first two years went to LIV victim, Jon Rahm, and Tony Finau taking it last year. Like Sandy – several stars have opted for a weekend break, but there’s still some talent in Mexico, to make it interesting. This course is good for those who can accurately smack a ball a long way and then follow up those drives with sensible long-iron play. The paspalum greens tend towards slow, so you want a good stats combo of driving distance, WSG off-the-tee and WSG approach (with an emphasis on 3,4 and 5 irons).

I can get 45/1 for 8 places from 888 on BRANDON WU who, like Finau, may be one of the horses for courses. He finished T2 with Finau here in 2022 and was third last year with a combined 14 strokes gained on the greens. The Californian also has combined for more than eight shots gained off the tee at this course. That looks like OK course form to me.

I get the same price for MAVERICK MCNEALY who caught my eye with his consistent play across the board, TPC Scottsdale (T6), where he gained strokes in all major categories. He is being backed and has come in 15 points since I thought about him yesterday.

Same price again for CAMERON CHAMP who finished tied eighth for this last year having missed 6 straight cuts!  The year before he tied sixth after a 10th at the Masters. OK he’s arriving with 4 straight cuts missed – but he’s gained more than 20 combined shots on the field at this course, including nearly ten off the tee and nine on the greens.

So that’s three 1 pt e/w bets and then I’ll Dutch the following on Betfair for 9 points at combined odds of 4.35/1 – with the opportunity to green out perhaps. that will make a total stake – (I so nearly wrote the words Winning Stake) – of 15 pts.

NICOLAI HOJGAARD 15.5 (who’s Danish) has had the look of a PGA winner this season with his 2nd in The Farmers and then reasonable money-earners (Top 40s) at Pebble Beach and the Genesis. Great ball striker, and is a contender.

TONY FINAU 9  Against an ordinary field he could easily win this on the form he’s shown so far this year – and on a course he really seems to shine on.

EMILIANO GRILLO 37 is in very decent form and at the Sony Open, where he finished T7 in January, the Argentinian gained 8+ strokes putting and has gained on the greens in all of his events this season (except the Phoenix Open). He was T5 here last year and gained 9½ iron strokes. Super value at triple Finau’s odds.

Sandy will be back next week. Inshallah

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