The RBC Heritage at Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head returns to its typical spot on the PGA Tour calendar this year. The 2020 tournament was pressed from April to June, thanks to the COVID pandemic that closed down golf et cetera of the sporting activities world.
It was the second event back after a three-month break. The 2021 RBC Heritage once more discovers itself in the shadow of the Masters.
The area, however, doesn’t appear to be dealing with adhering to a significant or otherwise following a pandemic lag. Top-ranked Dustin Johnson, a native of South Carolina, leads a group that consists of 5 of the world’s top-10 players and also 10 of the globe’s top-20. Protecting champion Webb Simpson, that is placed nine, will certainly look to rekindle several of the magic that caused his 22-under proving in 2014. All but one of the last decade’s champions also return.
” It looks extremely, excellent, with some exceptional pairings,” verifies CBS Sports on-course reporter Dottie Pepper. “The Thursday-Friday format; Billy Horschel, Dustin Johnson, Will Zalatoris are all matched with each other. Daniel Berger right behind them. Camera Smith, Webb Simpson, Paul Casey, Collin Morikawa, the ruling PGA champion. Patrick Cantlay remains in the top 10 in the world. It’s a remarkable field.”
Masters runner-up Will Zalatoris will certainly additionally tee it up again, looking for the PGA Tour win that protects his full-time Tour membership. “From strolling with him on Saturday at the Masters, he seems to be a guy that simply wants and also wants the sphere to take it to the hoop,” says Pepper. “He’s obtained momentum. He seemed to enjoy being in the spotlight last week, as well as I do not see any type of reason that he can not remain in contention if not win.”
Among the players in the top 10 teeing it up this week, Simpson had the most effective rating at the Masters. He connected for 12th at 2-under, 8 strokes behind champion Hideki Matsuyama. Morikawa as well as Tyrell Hatton tied for 18th at 1-under. And Also Johnson and Cantlay both missed out on the cut. They will have one more possibility this week to slide on the victor’s jacket, though it will be tartan rather than green.
Harbour Town is built on flat, low-lying marshy ground. A par-71 track gauging 7,099 yards, the course is on the much shorter side for the PGA Tour. What it does not have in length it makes up for in trouble. The calculated minimal layout features harrowingly slim fairways and also little environment-friendlies. Harbour Town demands shot-making quality to avoid the numerous trees– curtailed after the devastations of Hurricane Matthew in 2016– and the lots of sharp, crisp bunkers that developer Pete Dye as soon as stated are its ideal possession.
Rating reduced at Harbour Town needs exact positioning. The last six openings are among the best stretches on Tour. This portion of the program begins with the 373-yard par-4 13th, which includes a reasonably big environment-friendly safeguarded by a large front-side bunker. It ends with the 472-yard, par-4 18th, which plays along Calibogue Sound toward the red-and-white-striped Harbour Town lighthouse. Complete sight of the lighthouse will certainly depend on whether they require grandstands to suit the around 27,000 viewers (in contrast to the normal 135,000) that will be let in.
” It requires you really to believe your way around the golf course,” Pepper notes. “It’s a point-A-to-point-B fairway, where it’s not simply a power game, it’s a smarts video game. And also I think you see a really excellent equilibrium of gamers that have played well or won there.”
” Look at an individual like Webb Simpson last year,” Pepper continues. “Webb’s not the lengthiest player worldwide. He’s plenty long enough, so you can make use of the par-5s. But he’s additionally a really smart gamer, as well as has a really excellent brief game, since that is important at this golf course. The greens are, if not the smallest, amongst the smallest on Tour. You’re inevitably going to, when you obtain coastal winds, you’re going to miss out on some greens. And also you need to have a creative and also solid short video game to get around at Harbour Town.”
Below are the favorites:
Dustin Johnson (10-1)
Johnson stays the leading gamer on the planet, however he hasn’t looked all that sharp recently. He missed out on the cut at the Masters as well as finished connected for 48th at the Players and tied for 54th at the WGC-Mexico Championship prior to that. Johnson last split the leading 10 at the Genesis Open in February. Still, he has located a little success at Harbour Town, a program that does not seem to fit his skillset.
Webb Simpson (12-1)
Harbour Town sets up nicely for Simpson, that can put the round on the fairway and on the environment-friendly. He is the world’s ninth-ranked gamer and the tournament’s 2020 champion. Simpson likewise set the accumulation record for the competition with a 262, which was 22-under par. He has two other top-five finishes at the RBC Heritage in 2013 and 2018. Simpson is coming off a T12 at the Masters as well as took care of a T6 in the World Golf Championships-Workday Championship at The Concession in late February.
Patrick Cantlay (16-1)
Cantlay sits right behind Simpson on the planet golf rankings. In spite of missing the cut at the Masters as well as Players, he’s had a solid year to day, with 4 surfaces in the leading 15. That includes a second location at the American Express. He’s also had 3 solid provings at the RBC Heritage, placing third in 2017, 7th in 2018 as well as 3rd again in 2019.