Perry’s European Tour Betting Preview: Picks, Predictions and Sleepers for the British Masters
Stuart Franklin/Getty Images. Pictured: Adri Arnaus
Austria provided a wonderful setting for the return of the European Tour.
Granted the feeds we’re nearly impossible to find, and when we did happen upon one, we needed a German translator to decipher what was going on, but alas, Joel Stalter made it all worthwhile by holding on in the rain and cashing a 125-1 outright ticket with a two-shot victory at the Euram Bank Open.
Now, we’ll head to the United Kingdom for the British Masters, which kicks off a series of six events that will all have U.S. Open qualification implications on top of the usual Race to Dubai points. This event starts at 2 a.m. ET on Wednesday morning, so you’ll have to get any bets in early.
The British Masters is no longer a co-sponsored event with the Challenger Tour, so we should start to see some actual stats, regular score updates and a TV feed in English. Not too shabby.
Lee Westwood’s Colt Course at Close House Golf Club will host the event this week. It’s relatively short, measuring at around 6,900 yards for a par 71.
There isn’t much to test players here unless the stray too far and find some deep rough.
Close House held the event in 2017 with Paul Dunne holding off Rory McIlroy for a three-shot win. That season, Dunne was a solid driver with above-average length, but his claim to fame was being the No. 1 putter on tour that year. The flat stick caught fire that week as he reached 20-under par.
The cream rose to the top that week with Shane Lowry, Tyrrell Hatton, Matt Fitzpatick and Ian Poulter all joining McIlroy inside the top-11. Dunne himself went off at +5000.
With many of the aforementioned players in the States preparing for the PGA Championship, this field isn’t nearly as strong as the 2017 version.
The host Lee Westwood opened as the favorite at +900 and Thomas Detry was right behind at +1200.
This is the first event back for the majority of the field, so those are the only two players listed below +2500. The sportsbooks have decided to group a large portion of guys in the same range, which makes sense since we have no form at all to really go off and only one year of history at this course.
We’re basically flying blind in a weaker field, so bookmakers don’t appear to be taking much of a position on anyone here.
As mentioned, this is the range that Dunne came from and it’s where I’ll start my card.
I’ll be looking for as much form as possible, so I’m giving a slight edge to guys who played in Austria and had some decent results. They aren’t really the same type of course set-up — Austria was far more tree-lined and tight, while this is a more open track like we’re used to seeing in the United Kingdom — but the course is a similar length and could give more of a chance to players who don’t have that firepower off the tee.
With that said, I’ll start with Adri Arnaus at +3500.
Arnaus was the second-favorite in the last couple of events at courses that don’t really suit his game. He should be free to take the driver out in a few more spots this week and take better advantage of his tee-to-green prowess.
He was 11th last week and after eight rounds of competitive golf, he’s definitely got enough reps in to shake off the layoff rust.
I’ll add one more player in this range with Adrien Saddier at +7000.
Saddier was on the card two weeks ago and played fine in Austria, finishing 18th. Again, it’s about those reps for me in this part of the board. Saddier is a solid tee-to-green guy who keeps the ball in play, so I don’t mind trying him again this week at a bigger number.
With all the unknowns in regard to form, this is as good of chance as any for a longshot to sneak a win out, so I don’t mind taking a few fliers down the board. While the stars have been dominating the PGA TOUR, the European Tour has seen back-to-back longshot winners.
I’ll throw my first dart on Scott Vincent at +10000.
Vincent usually does most of his damage on the Asian Circuit, he notched four top-six finishes in Japan last year, but he looked solid in Austria and finished inside the top-25 in both events.
I think the courses in Austria were probably a better fit for him, but two solid results and a triple-digit number is worth a gamble here.
Adrian Otaegui didn’t play in Austria, but he’s got the talent to win in a field of this caliber, so I’ll add him to the card at +12500.
Otaegui’s picked up two wins over the last three years and, when he’s at his best, he’s an accurate player off the tee who can find lot of greens and is usually a good putter.
So if the course isn’t a bomber’s paradise, he can contend.
I’ll wrap up here with Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez at +17500.
Rodriguez finished fourth two weeks ago in the more difficult of the two tournaments in Austria, so he’ll be feeling good about his game. Things were not going well for the Spaniard in 2020, but he’s showed on the lower levels of European golf that he’s got the talent to be here. Rodriguez finished inside the top-10 in 11 of 32 starts on the Challenge Tour and the Alps Tour, so if his form has returned, he can put up a good result in England.
The British Masters Card
- Adri Arnaus +3500 (.83 units)
- Adrien Saddier +7000 (.47 units)
- Scott Vincent +10000 (.33 units)
- Adrian Otaegui +12500 (.26 units)
- Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez +17500 (.19 units)
Total Stake: 2.08 units