The Puerto Rico Open is being played opposite a full-field PGA Tour event for the second consecutive year. Most of the world’s top golfers are taking part in the Arnold Palmer Invitational this weekend, so opportunity awaits for the field here in Puerto Rico.
While the winner of this event will get just 300 FedEx Cup points as opposed to the usual 500 (and full winner’s perks like a berth into the Masters also aren’t at stake), it still counts as a PGA Tour win and helps golfers’ playoff hopes by placing well in these secondary events.
The event is held at in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, at the Grand Reserve Golf Club on the Championship Course. It was designed by Tom Kite and is a par-72, 7,506-yard course, so length is a factor—especially on two par-5 holes that measure in at over 600 yards, and being an island course, wind is also often a factor.
The course record is held by Chesson Hadley, who won this event at a 21-under 267 in 2014. Brehm came one shot away from tying Hadley’s record a year ago.
Brehm is at the Arnold Palmer Invitational by virtue of his 2022 win here, so the trend of having no back-to-back champs here will continue. Nate Lashley (+1300) is the favorite, which may be based on his success at similar courses. He won the Corales Puntacana Championship in 2017 when it was a Korn Ferry Tour stop, and he was seventh at the Sony Open in Hawaii this year. In two previous events here in Puerto Rico, he’s placed seventh and eighth.
At 120 in the Official World Golf Ranking, is the highest-ranked golfer in the field. He won the Barracuda Championship, also an alternate tour stop, in 2021.
Had quite the week at The Honda Classic. He was a Monday qualifier for that event and rallied to finish fourth, marking the first payday of his PGA Tour career. Prior to that, he finished third in his most-recent Korn Ferry Tour start.
Was 12th at The Honda Classic last week and comes to Grand Reserve with two top-10 finishes in his last two tries here.
The 45-year-old came in seventh here last year and finished strong on a difficult PGA National course last week. His 67 and 66 over the weekend allowed him to finish 14th at the Honda Classic.
Lashley is a solid favorite to back, and we also like Gerard and Percy coming off strong efforts last week. Herman is also worth a shot with plenty of value behind his name.
|ODDS TO WIN 2023 PUERTO RICO OPEN
|Erik Van Rooyen
|Roberto Diaz / M.J. Daffue