Barracuda Championship Golf 2023 – Tournament Outright Tips and Betting Preview

We have reached the tournament on the PGA Tour where the traditional scoring is put to one side for the Stableford method as those who are not competing at The Open get the chance to tee it up at the Barracuda Championship.

Chez Reavie took down what is a co-sanctioned event between the PGA Tour and the DP World Tour in California a year ago and despite that victory he has the opportunity to attempt to make a successful defence of the title here.

Recent Winners

2022 – Chez Reavie

2021 – Erik van Rooyen

2020 – Richy Werenski

2019 – Collin Morikawa

2018 – Andrew Putnam

2017 – Chris Stroud

2016 – Greg Chalmers

2015 – JJ Henry

2014 – Geoff Ogilvy

2013 – Gary Woodland

The Scoring

It is Stableford scoring this week rather than the usual scoring system used on the PGA Tour. Players receive two points to their score for every birdie they make while each eagle is worth five points. You get nothing for a par and lose a point for each bogey your player makes. Double bogeys and worse are worth a loss of three points. At the end of the week the highest number of points wins the tournament.

The Course

This tournament will be staged at the Old Greenwood Course at the Tahoe Mountain Club for the fourth time this week so we are getting more of a feel for what is required. The Nicklaus designed course is a par 71 which measures 7,480 yards and is perfect for this scoring with three par 5s and three drivable par fours. It is a cross between Riviera and Muirfield Village, albeit easier to score on. The overriding thing to remember is birdies are the order of the day. While bogeys aren’t helpful here they might not be the hindering factor of a normal event, especially if a player backs it up with an ocean of birdies.

We are at altitude this week so the ball is going to go further so players with a good record in this part of the world or in places like Mexico or Switzerland are good to have on side. Nearly all Nicklaus designs have wide open landing spots and require accurate irons and this is unlikely to be any different. I’m after players who can putt well. A decent short game would be a bonus as I don’t expect many long irons being hit in. The temperatures are expected to be high so conditions will be quite firm here.

The Field

Clearly with this event running alongside a major championship we are not going to get a stellar field on show but everyone who tees it up here has the chance to earn exemption for a period of time and build their way to potentially being at The Open by right next year. We do have last week’s Barbasol champion in the field this week in Vincent Norrman as well as the man who he beat in the playoff in Nathan Kimsey, not to mention the defending champion in Chez Reavie.

There are some household names in the field this week as well. Taylor Pendrith was a Presidents Cup player at the back end of last year while J.J. Spaun won the Texas Open last year and he is also in the field as are the likes of Keith Mitchell, Ryan Palmer and Luke List who have all won on the PGA Tour. Among those from the DP World Tour we have Max Kieffer, Mathieu Pavon and Sean Crocker among others in a competitive if second tier field.

Market Leaders

Stephen Jaeger is a shortening all the time favourite this week at 16/1. The German has a pair of top 10s to his name this season, the latest of which came two starts ago at the Rocket Mortgage Classic where he shut down his week with a 63. He comes into the tournament off the back of T9-T13 finishes and earlier in the year he had a top 15 at The Honda Classic which catches the eye. When it comes together he scores well but he won’t have played with the pressure of being a tournament favourite too often which might slow him down a touch.

Taylor Pendrith was the favourite for the Barbasol last week and went well enough but didn’t get the job done. He is out to 20/1 to take this title down and while the price is a little more attractive I’m not convinced that this setup is one where his strengths are in play. While he can let the driver go here you need to fire in some pinpoint irons which could be his undoing. I’d prefer him of the two market leaders but I’m happy to pass him over.

On the best prices there are three players at 25/1. They are Mark Hubbard, Patrick Rodgers and Beau Hossler. Hubbard has a good record in this tournament with three top 20s, the latest of which was when he finished fourth here a year ago. Rodgers also has a couple of top 20s to his name in this tournament but he might have just come off the very top of his form from earlier in the season while Hossler looks a little short based on the form he has shown this season.

Main Bets

I think Mark Hubbard looks a good bet this week. He has a solid record in this tournament and with one of the key facets this week being the approach play the fact that he sits at 15 for strokes gained putting on the entire PGA Tour this term bodes very well. He was fourth here a year ago and has four top 10s for his season, three of which have come in his last six starts including in strong fields at Colonial and in Canada. The other one was a low scoring event at the John Deere Classic a couple of weeks ago. Furthermore, he finished in the top 20 in Mexico which shows that he can handle altitude and he is my idea of the most likely winner here.

Harry Hall is an interesting runner here too. He sits at 25 on the birdie average on the PGA Tour this season and that is a statistic that I like to reference here with each one being worth a couple of points. Hall has good form in the second string events so far this season with T7 in Puerto Rick and T13 in the Dominican Republic and a top 10 in Mexico carries more weight here than most other places. Since Mexico he has finished third at Colonial where he opened with a 62 and then last week in Scotland he was sat in the top 10 in a truly world class field before the tough Sunday conditions found him out. As long as jet lag isn’t an issue here I think he can outperform a big price.


David Lipsky is a former winner of the European Masters in the Swiss Alps so the mountains of California shouldn’t hold too much fear for him and as someone who is much better with the irons in I see no reason why he can’t go well at a more than acceptable price here. Lipsky finished in the top 10 in Mexico earlier in the season so altitude and distance control is no issue. A little more recently he carded T16 and T12 finishes in the Charles Schwab Challenge and at The Memorial, the latter potentially relevant with that being played on a Nicklaus course like this. He feels like a player who could be overpriced here.

The other player who might be overpriced is Louis de Jager. He ranked inside the top 15 for strokes gained on approach at the Barbasol last week in a competitive first showing on the PGA Tour this season. Having had that spin to entail what it is all about I would expect him to go better this week. He had a top 10 in Switzerland on the DP World Tour last season which means he can handle altitude, although you would have expected that anyway being from South Africa. The South African has a couple of top 20s in his last four starts and if he can take to this course straight away he might well outperform his price too.


Back M.Hubbard to win Barracuda Championship (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 21.00 with Coral (1/5 1-7)

Back H.Hall to win Barracuda Championship (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 51.00 with Coral (1/5 1-7)

Back D.Lipsky to win Barracuda Championship (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 81.00 with Betfair (1/5 1-6)

Back Jager to win Barracuda Championship (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 151.00 with Boylesports (1/5 1-8)

Back him here:

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