We all had a break from the madness of the FedEx Cup playoffs last week as the players were given a rest before getting right back into the thick of the action at Conway Farms on Thursday. At the end of the BMW Championship the field will be more than halved as only 30 of the 70 players teeing it up this week will make it through to the Tour Championship next week.
As ever at this stage of the FedEx Cup, the field is a mixture of the finest players in the world and those who have found form at the right time. The PGA Tour have made some alterations to the way that points are distributed in the playoffs but there are still many more points available in these final four events than at any other event of the season. So even those players who find themselves at the bottom of the pile going into this week can win the $10 million prize at the end of it all by winning twice in the next fortnight.
Conway Farms is hosting the BMW Championship for the second time. In 2012 it became quickly clear that being wayward off the tee is deadly to any player’s chances here. The long fescue grass will tangle around anything that missed the fairways by too much and although the par 71 course is fairly long at around 7,200 yards the winner here will be decided by accuracy rather than power.
After finishing in the top five in every major last season, Ricki Fowler has kicked on again this year. His two wins this season have been huge, the first coming at the Players Championship (the so called fifth major) and the second last week at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Time and time again we have seen players who hit form at just the right time lift the FedEx Cup and Fowler could be the latest in that line of talent. He’s got the sort of accurate play with his driver and irons that is needed at Conway Farms so back him to record back to back wins at 16/1 with Bet365.
Jim Furyk looks very well placed for another strong week. The veteran American has based his whole career around a tight, accurate game but sometimes struggles to keep pace with the bombers who are becoming increasingly numerous at the top level of golf. His longevity is testament to the way he cleverly places his ball in the right position which allows him to hit the ball close to the hole. Furyk has already won this year and he holds the course record here having shot 59 in 2012 so must be included in your bets at 20/1 with Ladbrokes.
Zach Johnson is another player who has based his career around course management accuracy rather than trying to hit the ball 300 yards plus off the tee. He famously won the Masters without hitting any of the par fives in two shots and won this event when it was last hosted at Conway Farms. Johnson is 25/1 with Bet365 which looks too big about a player who won the Open Championship this season and who clearly likes playing in this part of Chicago.