The Butterfield Bermuda Championship is the fifth of eight fall events of the 2022 PGA Tour wraparound season, and while it boasts the lowest purse of the group, it still awards 500 FedEx Cup points, entry into the Masters, and a two year Tour exemption to the winner.
The total money up for grabs has increased from $4 million to $6.5 million over 2020, with the winner earning $1.17 million instead of the $720,000 that Brian Gay picked up as last year’s champion.
The tournament began in 2019 as an alternate event opposite the WGC-HSBC Champions, whose subsequent cancellations due to Covid-19 have resulted in the elevation of the event to full-field status.
Despite the increased status, the Butterfield Bermuda Championship still lacks a large number of top players, providing plenty of opportunity for new Tour members or veterans like the 48-year-old Gay, who was victorious for the first time since 2013 to win the tournament.
Gay was able to pick up the fifth Tour victory and his first win since the 2013 Humana Challenge by making a birdie on the first hole of a playoff with Wyndham Clark after the two players tied at 15 under par 269 two free of the rest of the field.
Port Royal Golf Course in Southampton on the tiny island in the Atlantic Ocean, far off the coast of North Carolina, is the host and plays at 6,828 yards and a par 71, with a record of 24 under par 260 established in the first year of the tournament by Brendan Todd in 2019.
European Ryder Cup team member Matthew Fitzpatrick, who is still looking for his first PGA Tour win despite success on the European Tour, heads the wagering list with odds of +1000. He’s followed by Christiaan Bezuidenhout from South Africa, a three-time winner on the European Tour in 2020, at +1200.
Mito Pereira, a late-blooming 26-year-old Chilean standout who won three times on the Korn Ferry Tour to earn a promotion to PGA Tour, is at +1600, and former Masters champion Patrick Reed, one of four major champions in the field, is next at +2000 along with Ireland’s Seamus Power.
Other notables include Danny Willett, another winner of the Masters at +4000, former PGA champion Jason Dufner with odds of +6500, and past world number one Luke Donald at +25000.
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This would be an ideal spot for Fitzpatrick, who is making his 2022 season debut, to notch his first Tour win, with the short layout putting a premium on accuracy instead of distance and the field mostly devoid of top players.
The 27-year-old from England had a nice run last spring with five top-ten finishes between February and June, including a tie for fourth at the RBC Heritage, also played on a tight golf course.
Pereira finished third in the opening tournament of the season at the Fortinet Championship and had three consecutive top-six finishes in limited action on the PGA Tour in 2021.
He was one of seven players involved in the playoff for the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympic Games, eventually won by CT Pan in the event where Xander Schauffele earned the gold medal.
Patrick Reed has battled illness and controversy in the last several months while being passed over for a spot on the United States Ryder Cup team by captain Steve Stricker.
The nine-time winner on Tour is the best player in the field, although the wagering odds of +2000 don’t necessarily reflect that fact.