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Texas Time: The 2018 Valero Texas Open Preview

Valero Texas Open - Final Round

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The Texas Open is old as hell. It dates back NINTY FIVE years to 1922, and became the Valero Texas Open after they bought the naming rights in 2002.

It’s played at The Oaks Course at TPC San Antonio, just northeast of the city.

Arnold Palmer won this thing 3 years in a row from 1960-1962. Tom Armour III posted the TOUR scoring record of 254 in 2003, posting 26-under here.

The Valero has bounced around on the schedule. At times, it’s been played opposite the Ryder and Presidents Cups. In 1987, there was no tournament because the club hosted the first ever TOUR Championship.

Our boy Steven Bowditch won his first PGA TOUR event here in 2014.

The Track

The Oaks Course is a Greg Norman design with consultation from your 2017 Masters champ, Sergio Garcia. It’s 7,433 yards and a par 72.

Although the event itself historically plays pretty easy, the course has held up as of late. In 3 of the last 6 years, the winner has come in at single-digits under par. Kevin Chappell and Charlie Hoffman (both Fore Play guys) each won at 12-under the past two years. The Oaks does, after all, boast a 76.5 rating and a 148 slope.

Notable Holes

2nd, 602 yards, par 5

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600+ yard par-5 with a double green here.

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Typically plays into the wind, too.

5th, 342 yards, par 4

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Downhill and often downwind, this one’s gettable. Hopefully see a lot of guys give this green a rip from the tee. Fun hole.

16th, 183 yards, par 3

Valero Texas Open - Final Round

It’s not Riviera’s 6th, but it does have a bunker in the middle of the green.

17th, 347 yards, par 4

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Another shorty. Let’s gamble.

18th, 591 yards, par 5

Valero Texas Open - Round Two

A lot going on on this finishing par-5, for better or worse. This thing produces drama — here’s how Chappell won it here just last year.

Clubhouse

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Upon further review, I believe this clubhouse is one of those “actually it’s the resort hotel” type situations. Don’t love it.

Clubhouse score = 4.7.

Weather

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The Field

Sergio Garcia, Si Woo Kim, Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, Beau Hossler, Shubhankar Sharma, Jim Furyk, Kevin Chappell, Adam Scott.

Not the most star power I’ve ever seen.

Predictions

Winning Score

That Texas wind will be blowing. That’s what I like to see.

Winning score, -9.

Winner

This doesn’t happen very often, but I LOVE our defending champ here. He’s missed the last two cuts but before that he had three top-10s in a six start stretch and he clearly loves the course. Finished T4 here the year before he won.

Winner, Kevin Chappell.

Steven Bowditch Memorial DFL Award

Steven Bowditch!

Dark Horse

Beau Hossler is 40/1 this week and his last two results are a 2nd and a T16.

Dark horse, Beau Hossler.

Coverage

Thursday & Friday: Golf Channel 3:30-6:30 pm
Saturday & Sunday: Golf Channel 1-2:45 pm; CBS 3 pm on

Golf SZN

Gear up, buy a polo.

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Finding Golf Balls >>>>

We struck a chord with a lot of folks on Fore Play this week. Turns out golf guys will do pretty much anything to find a free golf ball vs just paying for new ones.

Enjoy Texas.