Preview: 2021 Fortinet Championship

We should have it all covered with Expert Picks, Horses for Courses, OAD and now the preview.

For those of you who read regularly, I thank you.

Fort those of you who are new, I suggest reading all pieces so all angles are covered.

The price for content remains the same this year but if you’re interested, Venmo is @Mike-Glasscott.

via @SilveradoResort

2021 Fortinet Championship

Silverado Resort & Spa

North Course

Napa, California

Yards (per official scorecard):7,123
Par:72 (36-36)
Greens:Bentgrass, Poa annua; 6,200 square feet on average.
Stimpmeter:11.5′
Rough:Kentucky Bluegrass, ryegrass at three inches.
Bunkers/Water Hazards50/2
Architects:Robert Trent Jones, Jr. (1967); Johnny Miller Group (2010).
Purse:$7 million ($1.26 winner) plus 500 FedExCup points.
Defending Champion (event):Stewart Cink (not entered)
Fact of the Week:For the seventh time in eight years Silverado bats leads off to open the TOUR season.
Fact of the Week II:Host since 2014, previous results do not matter as the event was NOT contested here.

Notes:

  • Full field, 156 players
  • Top 65 and ties play the weekend.

2021-2022  Season Winners

*- First-time winner

**- First-time winner AND rookie winner

EventWinner
Fortinet ChampionshipTBD

Check out HORSES FOR COURSES for more details on those who play well here.

Event Winners:

Calendar Year/Player/ScoreNotes
2020 – Stewart Cink, -21Set the tournament record and became the oldest winner.
2019 – Cameron Champ, -17Sacramento native wins for the second time on TOUR.
2018 – Kevin Tway, -14Birdied the last five holes (regulation and playoff) to secure first TOUR victory.
2017 – Brendan Steele, -15Came from two shots off the pace on Sunday to defend his title.
2016 – Brendan Steele, -18Came from four shots off the pace on Sunday after firing 65. Largest winning deficit overcome.
2015 – Emiliano Grillo, -15First event with a TOUR card. That’s the Tweet.
2014 – Sangmoon Bae, -15Sat 16-under thru 54 holes and led by four, won by two.

Facts and Figures:

Tournament Record:267 (-21); Stewart Cink.
Course Record:61; Ricky Barnes (Round 2), 2018; Chesson Hadley (Round 2), 2017.
Recent Defending Champion(s):Brendan Steele (2016, 2017)
Multiple Winners (event or course):Brendan Steele (2016, 2017)
First Time TOUR:Kevin Tway and Emiliano Grillo.
Oldest Winner:Stewart Cink, 47.
Youngest Winner:Emiliano Grillo, 23.
Odd Fact:Only one winner has finished in the top 10 in Strokes-Gained: Putting.
Odd Fact II:Of the seven winners, five have led the field in Strokes-Gained: Tee-to-Green.
Odd Fact III:All seven winners have been top 3 in bogey avoidance.

Welcome Back!

Hope your offseason was fantastic!

This is one of the hardest events to handicap annually but I’ll give it a shot. The rookies into the pond for the first time, plus the rest of the KFT grads and everyone else looking to get ahead of the curve makes for an interesting week.

The course will give up birdies but can jump up and bite those who aren’t patient. There’s a reason a 47-year old won here in convincing fashion. He only made two bogeys. Pars ain’t bad folks. Take what it gives and take your medicine when it doesn’t.

Young guys, inexperienced guys will post numbers because that’s what they’ve had to do to get to this point. Do they have the patience and course management for 72 holes is the question that will be asked.

Par 72, 7,123 yards with four Par-5 seems like it should be a walk in the park. Course is reportedly in PERFECT condition and the wildfires aren’t edging towards the property. Find GIR and find more GIR and go from there. The more putts at it, the more chances for birdies. Oh, and eat up the Par-5 holes.

Chalk

Like I said, I’m not crazy about this event as it has way tooooooo many moving parts to handle. Do the KFT Finals guys carry over a la Grillo? Does Brendan Steele remember he’s The Landlord? Will Cameron Champ say “I’m sorry for not defending” last year by blowing out the field? Is Jon Rahm healthy enough to even consider?

Kevin Na and Will Zalatoris would get my attention from the top level players.

Outsiders

Hoo boy. Plenty to choose from this week.

Charley Hoffman has done nothing here but is worth a nibble. … Max Homa is a Cal Berkley guy who has a knack for popping up. … Maverick McNealy has been throwing up consistent results and grew up in the Bay Area like Zalatoris. … Chez Reavie and Brandt Snedeker fit the Cink/Veteran angle. … HV III is trending here. … Grillo is a major course horse.

Funny Money

Roger Sloan eats up Par-5 holes and that’s a requirement this week to offset any trouble. … Stephan Jaeger is playing out of his mind and I wonder if he carries that momentum back to the TOUR. … Kiradech Aphibarnrat let one slip last week at Wentworth. … Nick Taylor is sneaky good on this coast. … Sahith Theegala T14 last year. … Chesson Hadley has gone close twice in the last few months and shares the course record. … Mark Hubbard is a San Jose St guy. … Kris Ventura (T7 last year) and Justin Suh MQ.

Too many glasses of wine

Wyndham Clark: No checks in his last six tries.

 Jon Rahm: I can’t at +450.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out through Twitter or email me mikeglasscott@gmail.com.

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