Valspar Championship - Winner

We stay in Florida on the PGA Tour for the Valspar and the tricky Copperhead course at Innisbrook. It is not a course which can be overpowered and generally speaking the power hitters that dominate the game don't have the same advantage when arriving at Innisbrook.

Casey joined the likes of Furyk, Hadwin, Spieth, Senden, Donald and O'Hair in winning this event a couple of years ago with a neat and tidy long game and not bashing drivers as far as they possibly could. It was a tee to green masterclass from Sam Burns when realising his potential last year. It takes a different approach here and may see the likes of Johnson and Thomas fail to dominate and the short prices about the market leaders are of little appeal.

A lot of dog legs limit the powerful hitters around here and a fair degree of strategy is needed. The John Deere Classic is an event to look to with many having won both events including Spieth, O'Hair, Singh and Senden. The Sony Open and Mayakoba are another two tournaments I'll keep in mind when finalising my staking plan.

Kevin Streelman at 100/1 (Eight Places)

Kevin Streelman is an interesting one this week having gone into the final round last week with an outside squeak. A final round 73 wasn't what was required but it was another big tournament where he went out in the final few groups.

Three top 20s in the final three majors of 2021 show just how much he has improved in the big events lately and Sawgrass was just another example last week. An event like that may prove to be beyond him as he heads towards his mid 40s, but the Valspar certainly isn't.

He won this event back in 2013 having posted a top 10 the year before and surely must be better respected in the market than the 100/1 out generally. 16th at the Honda at the start of the Florida swing also so clearly arrives in some decent form. There are numerous at shorter prices that certainly shouldn't be ahead of him and he rates the best bet of the week for me.

1.5pts each-way K.Streelman 100/1 (1/5 8)

Kevin Streelman - 1.5pts e/w @ 100/1

Russell Knox at 66/1 (Eight Places)

Russell Knox has been playing extremely good golf for a fair period of time now and a return to Copperhead should provide him with one of the best opportunities of the year to come out on top. The course is ideal for Knox who has been producing a tee to green lesson for the last few months without the fanfare. Finally last week he had a huge chance and after a perfect start in round four came unstuck as the round continued.

Nevertheless that was another solid effort in a strong field and Knox looks capable of a win sooner rather than later. He putted well last week for the first time throughout this consistent period and if he manages to bring that form with the putter to Copperhead then he has to have a serious chance of competing once again.

1pt each-way R.Knox 66/1 (1/5 8)

Russell Knox - 1pt e/w @ 66/1

Mito Pereira at 125/1 (Eight Places)

Chilean Mito Pereira has been on many lips as a future winner on the PGA Tour and I'm more than happy to get involved this week at a top price of 125/1 given his pedigree. He finished 15th three starts ago in a stronger field than this at the Genesis and the two weeks following have been marred with poor putting displays. He still managed a top 30 at the Honda but his solid long game was wiped out last week by a really poor effort on the greens at Sawgrass.

The positives remain in his tee to green game and that is most important around here and with his accurate game I anticipate a further improvement in those stats around Copperhead. Maybe needs a little more experience on the main tour before winning but already has a top 3 to his name at the Fortinet and this track should suit.

1pt each-way M.Pereira 125/1 (1/5 8)

Mito Pereira - 1pt e/w @ 125/1

Aaron Wise at 66/1 (Eight Places)

Aaron Wise warrants respect around the 66/1 mark given he managed another solid effort from tee to green last week at Sawgrass and was once again let down by the flat stick. He ranked 6th in approach last week at Sawgrass but was well down the field when it came to the putter. The story was the same at Bayhill when he finished 17th with his long game flourishing once again.

Runner ups at Quail Hollow and Mayakoba show that wise is suited by a technical test and he'll get that this week in Innisbrook. A big performance doesn't look far away if he can hole a few putts and having made the cut on debut here back in 2018 he can be expected to go a lot better second time around.

1pt each-way A.Wise 66/1 (1/5 8)

Aaron Wise - 1pt e/w @ 66/1