The curtain comes down on the 2018 golfing year this week with an event that hasn’t always been taken seriously by the big players, the QBE Shootout.
This time around, however, we have a competitive field that includes some of the most successful golfers of 2018 so the betting market for the QBE Shootout is well worth a look.
This is a pairs event, played over 54 holes with the first round involving scrambling, followed by greensomes and then fourball. There are a number of former champions in the field so let’s move straight on and see if we can pick a winner with our concluding QBE Shootout predictions.
It is tight at the top of the outright winner odds with some legal online U.S. sportsbooks listing joint-favorites. Others have the pairing of Bryson Dechambeau and Kevin Na (+500 with Bovada, whose odds we will quote in this preview) just ahead of the pack. Neither man has won this event but individually Dechambeau is the best golfer on show with four wins this season.
Playing partner Na has a solitary success at The Greenbrier in 2018 and together they should complement each other’s game and that is key to a strong finish in this tournament.
Alongside that pair is the combination of Cameron Champ and Kevin Kisner (+500). For 23-year-old Champ, 2018 was a breakthrough year which culminated in victory at the Sanderson Farms Championship in October while Kisner is a veteran by comparison and once again, we have a pairing who should complement each other well.
The betting remains tight and we move just a few points back to Billy Horschel and Brandt Snedeker (+650). In turn, that pairing is followed by Charley Hoffman and Gary Woodland (+700 or 7/1) who are just ahead of Kyle Stanley and Pat Perez (+750).
Amongst that pack is our first former champion in Snedeker who won here in 2015 when partnered with Jason Dufner. Current partner Horschel has also enjoyed some success in team golf so we’ll be considering those two in our round up.
The betting then starts to move out with Charles Howell III and Luke List (+800) some points behind, followed by Emiliano Grillo and Graeme McDowell (10/1). Harold Varner and Bubba Watson (+1000) are also towards the back of the chasing pack. Then we come to our defending champions Sean O’Hair and Steve Stricker (14/1). Both men have additional wins here with different partners and while there is little support in the QBE Shootout betting odds this year, their position underlines how tricky this call will be.
There are just 12 pairings taking part in this event and there is no cut to be made so we don’t really have any rank outsiders this week. The longest odds belong to Luke Donald and Andrew Landry (25/1). That is understandable given that Donald is making his way back from injury and Landry is something of a journeyman pro, but he did land his first Tour win back in April.
Just ahead of that pairing are two names that interest us: World Number Nine Tony Finau is playing with Lexi Thompson (14/1) who has no fewer than ten wins on the LPGA Tour. Finau’s power hitting will assist these two over the longer holes and we are sure that Thompson has the temperament and game to be competitive over the three days.
Our Preview’s QBE Shootout Course Trends with Picks & Predictions Verdict
All three rounds are played at the Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Florida which is a par 72 at a fraction under 7,300 yards. Designed by Greg Norman there are some lengthy par 5s here including the 600 yard sixth so this is one venue on the circuit that could benefit the power hitters.
Aside from distance hitting, it is tough to identify key stats as the pairs will complement each other so form and time on the course is usually important when picking a winner. In terms of multiple wins, there are precedents and the most recent pair to complete a ‘double’ were Harris English and Matt Kuchar in 2016.
For the 2018 edition, it could be as tough to call as the QBE Shootout odds market suggests but our preference is for Billy Horschel and Brandt Snedeker. Sneds has that previous win in this tournament while it’s also good to remember that Horschel has won a team golf event this season. He took out the Zurich Classic of New Orleans with Scott Piercy in April.
We are also interested to monitor the Tony Finau / Lexi Thompson pairing. So we will finish off the golfing year with these two QBE Shootout predictions: