15th Feb 2022 | Genesis Open

Genesis Open Trends

There is no stopping the PGA Tour with a strong field assembling for the Genesis Trust Open. We look at the trends of past winners.

The PGA Tour stays in California for the Genesis (formerly Northern Trust) Open at Riviera Country Club. A regular stop on tour, Riviera CC has hosted the tournament on a near continuous basis since 1973.

A par-71, it ranked the 4th most difficult course on tour in 2014 and 2015’s winning score was 6-under. With a classic lay-out the priority is finding fairways and greens, making it a good all-round test of a golfer’s ability. 

Experience seems to be an advantage with only 4 of the last 32 champions winning their first tour title at Riviera.

Let us look at the 15 previous champions for clues:

Top-70 on tour for strokes gained tee-to-green
In 2015 James Hahn won despite ranking 50th in strokes gained putting during the tournament, runner up Dustin Johnson was 54th. You can win at Riviera with just an excellent tee-to-green performance and that ties together 13 of the last 15 champions. JB Holmes just misses out after ranking 71st for this metric in 2019.

Top-70 on tour for all-around ranking
Riviera’s fairways and greens are amongst the toughest to find on tour, proving that a good all-round game is needed to succeed. 12 of the last 15 winners ranked inside the top-70 on tour for this metric, which brings together driving, ball striking, putting and scoring.

Top-70 on tour for adjusted scoring average
The better players and particularly those playing well, have enjoyed success at the Northern Trust Open with 13 of the last 15 winners ranked in the top-70 on tour for adjusted scoring average.

Top-70 on tour for driving distance
Four of the top-5 in 2016 ranked inside the top-13 on tour for driving distance. Names like Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson, Jason Kokrak and Adam Scott scream a big hitter’s venue.

Players that fit all four trends:
Aaron Wise
Adam Scott
Corey Conners
Hideki Matsuyama
Jhonattan Vegas
Joaquin Niemann
Jon Rahm
Justin Thomas
Luke List
Marc Leishman
Maverick McNealy
Patrick Cantlay
Sam Burns
Scottie Scheffler
Sergio Garcia
Sungjae Im
Talor Gooch
Will Zalatoris
Xander Schauffele

Odds correct at time of publishing: 09:24 15th Feb, 2022 but subject to change

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