QBE Shootout: Golf Ends 2017 in Unusual Style
We enjoyed a thrilling climax to this year’s tournament golf in the US and it was also a profitable one as Rickie Fowler shot an incredible last round 61 to bring us a profit in the outright winner’s market. The Hero World Challenge was also notable for a return to action from Tiger Woods who looked in good shape after his latest comeback from injury.
It’s all shaping up for a brilliant year in 2018 but we bring down the curtain for this season with the QBE Shootout, an event with a slightly different format that can often bring some good value.
How It Works
The tournament is a little complicated in terms of its format and some punters prefer just to ignore it and look instead for the players that are in form. However, for those that find it useful, here’s how it all works.
Players form teams of two and the event takes place over three days with 54 holes in total. On the first day, it’s in a scramble format with those teams picking the best shot and progressing with the hole.
On the second day, greensomes come into play and the event concludes with Better ball or Fourball. Those familiar with the Ryder Cup will be aware of these terms and essentially, while it’s an odd tournament, the best players will come through to win just as they would in any golfing event.
Harris English and Matt Kuchar are our reigning champions and they will start as favourites this week at best odds of 5/1 with BetFred. The pair also took the QBE Shootout title in 2013 and while English has been relatively quiet this year, it’s been a strong 2017 for Kuchar who finished as runner up in the Open Championship back in July.
The English / Kuchar axis could also thrive due to the fact that while others may be changing partners, they are an established pairing in this tournament that will know each other’s game.
Behind the top two are Kevin Chappell and Kevin Kisner who are available at a top price of 13/2 with Bet365 and 10Bet while Brian Harman and Pat Perez catch our eye at their best of 15/2 with Bet365 and Paddy Power. It’s been a good year for veteran Perez who claimed the CIMB Classic recently while Harman took out the Wells Fargo in May and followed that with a tie for second at the US Open.
Also at that top price of 15/2, this time with 888Sport and 188Bet, are Charley Hoffman and Zach Johnson. Of that pairing Hoffman led for much of the Hero World Challenge last week before being eclipsed by Rickie Fowler on the final day so they may have an edge coming into the QBE.
Very few of the players mentioned so far has enjoyed any success at this rather unusual event so it could be worth taking a look at the pairing of Jason Dufner and Billy Horschel who are out at best odds of 16/1 with SportingBet and BetFred.
Dufner took this event in 2016 with Brandt Snedeker and should have no issues with a change of partner this time around. Coming back to this year and we have the Irish duo of Shane Lowry and Graeme McDowell, both of whom have ended 2017 in decent touch and they can be picked up at a best price of 11/1 with Ladbrokes and Coral.
Others to look out for in the mid-range prices include Keegan Bradley and Brendan Steele at 10/1 with William Hill plus Russell Henley and Kyle Stanley at 11/1 with Boylesports.
Trends and Indicators
There have been different sponsors through the years but this is an established event that was first held back in 1989. It’s currently hosted by Greg Norman and held at the Tiburon Golf Club in Naples Florida.
At 7,288 yards and par 72, it’s relatively lengthy and the nature of the early format means that the big hitters can let loose and a lack of accuracy isn’t necessarily punished as their playing partner is still in the game. With that in mind, who’s going to win this year?
Individual form isn’t necessarily a strong indicator either as this is essentially a team sport but it clearly helps if both golfers are in good touch coming into the event. Charley Hoffman and Zach Johnson will therefore attract some interest following Hoffman’s strong showing over three rounds at the Hero World Challenge.
But the names that stand out for us are those of Pat Perez and Brian Harman. Both have won individual events in 2017 and are closing out the year in good touch and at 15/2 they offer some reasonable value. Hoffman and Johnson are tempters so we’ll tip them also, this time in the separate Top Three betting where they are quoted at a top price of 7/2 with SkyBet.
- Brian Harman and Pat Perez to win the QBE Shootout at 15/2 with Bet365
- Charley Hoffman and Zach Johnson for a Top Three Finish at 7/2 with SkyBet