Whilst most of the golfing world’s attentions are focused on this year’s Open Championship, over in California the Barracuda Championship represents a great chance for some of the PGA and DP World Tour’s lesser lights to take center stage. Here the Barracuda Championship Round 1 & 2 Recap
The Barracuda is a unique event that abandons the traditional strokeplay scoring system and instead employs Stableford scoring where points are awarded for birdies and eagles.
Leading at the halfway stage is world number 219 Ryan Gerard. Gerard enjoyed a fast start to life on the PGA Tour with a fourth place finish in the 2023 Honda Classic. Since then life has been tougher with the American not finishing inside the top twenty since.
Things look set to change this weekend as Gerard has been striking the ball beautifully. Leading by four points, he surged into the lead following a superb second round which contained seven birdies and no dropped shots.
Tucked in just behind Gerard is Patrick Rodgers. Rodgers is seeking his first PGA victory and came desperately close at the 2023 Bermuda Championship earlier this year. A wild second round saw Rodgers post seven birdies and three bogeys. He will hope to be more consistent today if he is to make his move.
A month ago very few of us would have heard of Vincent Norrman, but that has all changed now following his playoff victory at last week’s Barbasol Championship. A graduate from Florida State, the Swede is riding high and finds himself in a great position to achieve the rare feat of back to back PGA wins.
First round leader Beau Hossler is still very much in contention. A hole in one during his first round saw him establish an early lead, but a quiet second round which saw him post just three birdies and one bogey has left him eight points behind Gerard heading into today’s third round.
The nature of the Stableford scoring system means that the order of this year’s Barracuda can change quickly, and anyone who has made the cut will believe that they still have a chance of winning.
With his lead, Ryan Gerard is the current tournament favorite. His second round provided bundles of scoring opportunities which is ideal for this format. Keeping his ball out of trouble will be key as he bids for his first ever PGA win.
Patrick Rodgers comes next in the betting with the nine year Tour veteran looking to finally land his first ever PGA title. A former top amateur, Rodgers has come close on several occasions but has never been able to get over the line. As one of the most experienced men in the field he could be the value option of today.
Vincent Norrman rounds out the top three in the betting and is currently one of the PGA Tour’s most in form players thanks to his dramatic victory in last week’s Barbasol Championship.
Knowing that his PGA Tour future is secured, Norrman can attack pins today with the pressure off. He could produce another big round today.
Dou Zecheng showed the fluidity of this scoring format in yesterday’s second round with sixteen points. Duo’s round included seven birdies and one eagle and moved him right into contention. Leading at the 2023 Byron Nelson, a late surge from Jason Day would just deny him the title. With that experience under his belt, he could be the best value angle of today.
|Player||Odds by Jazzsports|
|Field (Any other)||+350|