Houston Open 2021 Overview
Memorial Park Golf Course, which opened in 1936 and is located near downtown Houston, is a municipal course. Last year, Tom Doak remodelled the course with Brooks Koepka’s aid. This week’s event will be a Par 70 course with a total length of over 7400 yards. You Can be sure with the influence of Brooks on this redesign it will be a demanding and challenging ball striking test.
The revised course includes three Par 5s and five Par 3s, with several of the latter stretching out to over 200 yards. There are numerous Par 4s that are between 450 and 500 yards long. One of the course’s distinguishing features is the lack of bunkers that really come into action; instead, the course has minimal amounts of water throughout, as well as challenging slopes and run-off areas, particularly on and around the greens. Each and every club in the bag will be put to work this week.
This week, golfers will need to be precise with their approaches and have a strong around-the-green game to get up and down on these tough Bermuda greens. Long hitters should be able to take advantage of the several Par 5s and shorter Par 4s that will be in play this week one on the back 9 is drivable for most, so I’ll be looking for individuals who can blast the ball far off the tee. The ability to hit approaches well from the 175-225 yard range will also be important this week, with numerous Par 3s going over 200 yards.
Overall this week I’m looking for players who can play big boy golf courses well. When looking at the leaderboard last year all of the players at the top stand out in the ball striking statistics this isn’t a course for finesse and precision but more out and out T2G play.
5 Key Skills Set Required
- Driving Distance – A long and demanding course of the tee box. Plenty of Par 4 ‘s over 450 yards and the addition of 5 Par 5’s which is very rare. All of this means I’m favouring big boy players of the tee box this week. No place for the faint hearted. The last few weeks on tour have favoured precision, not the case this week.
- SG T2G – On a super demanding layout makes sense to look at recent strokes gained T2G performance. Looking at the leaderboard from last year shows this is a real ball striking test and the worlds most elite players from tee to green rise to the top of the leaderboard come Sunday evening.
- Proximity to hole from 175 Yards + – This is a tough and demanding track the players face there is a significant amount of shots From 175 yards or greater rather than look at green in regulation data this week I want to look at proximity to the whole from 175 to 225 yards there will be a higher volume of shots from this distance than the average week on tour. Like we have touched upon, this is a real ball striking test.
- Par 5 Scoring efficiency – Looking at the data it appears Par 5 scoring last year was a key factor in determining the Top 5 player on the leaderboard.
- Par 3 Scoring efficiency – There are 5 par 3 holes this week some of them extremely demanding at over 200 yards it therefore makes sense to pay particular attention to par 3 scoring. I will also be paying close attention to par-3 holes over 175 yards.