When Jon Rahm arrived in America for college he could barely speak a word of English. Just a few short years later and the Spaniard is fluent thanks to a combination of grit, hard work and a natural ability to pick things up. The way that Rahm learned English apes the way that he’s taken to life as a professional golfer. After just one full season as a pro, Rahm has risen to number two in the world thanks to wins on both the PGA and European Tours.
Rahm’s most recent win came last week at the CareerBuilder Challenge where he outlasted Andrew Landry in a playoff. This week he returns to the site of his maiden professional win, Torrey Pines.
The long time host of the Famers Insurance Open is one of the most well regarded venues on the PGA Tour with both the North and South Courses utilised this week. They’re each par 72 layouts but it’s the South Course that is the most feared and that was used for the 2008 U.S. Open. Tiger Woods won his 14th major championship that week. That was just one of nine wins for Woods at Torrey Pines so it’s no surprise that he’s making his PGA Tour return in the California course this week.
Can Fowler Tame Torrey?
Rickie Fowler has a surprisingly poor recent record at Torrey Pines. The world number seven has missed the cut in three of his last four starts at Torrey but his stats were much more impressive earlier on in his career. Fowler, a California native, used to enjoy the combination of Kikuyu rough and Poa Annua greens at Torrey (at least relative to his competition). He’s also always had the ball striking prowess to hold the firm greens so his recent record will trouble him.
The fact that Fowler is back to compete in the Farmers Insurance Open once again suggests that he believes he’s not been far away in recent years. He wouldn’t turn up if he felt otherwise. Fowler’s certainly played well enough over the last six months or so to suggest that more big wins are in his near future. At his best, Fowler’s got the game to tame Torrey Pines and could well reverse his recent form spectacularly by winning at 12/1 with Bet365.
Stanley to Stay Calm as Others Panic
The difference between the North and South Courses in terms of scoring average may be narrowing but it’s still significant. Every player knows they need a low one on the North Course and that pressure can be too much for some. It’s unlikely to affect the laid back Kyle Stanley.
The 30-year-old is the sort of player who just goes about his game, getting the ball from the tee to green with the minimum amount of fuss. As well as remaining calm on the North Course, Stanley is a world class ball striker who will avoid most of the trouble on the South Course. His no nonsense approach saw Stanley finish second here in 2012 and he’s primed for another good showing so back him each way at 60/1 with Betfred.