Starts: 26th May 2022
Course: Colonial CC
Length: 7,209 yards
2021 Champion: Jason Kokrak
Designer: Bredemus & Maxwell
Used Since: 1946
Greens: Small, Bentgrass.
Water Hazards: In-play on 6 holes.
Par 5's: 1st and 11th
Premium on: Approach play and Putting
Continue to exercise caution in relation to Covid-19 related withdrawals.
Players who were in contention at last week's PGA Championship may experience a hangover from that event.
It looks set to be a dry week with the wind expected to blow over the weekend.
Sunny, max winds 9mph.
Sunny, max winds 16mph.
Sunny, max winds 21mph.
Partly sunny, max winds 22mph.
Winning scores in the last eleven years have ranged from -10 to -20. The past three years the score has been between -13 and -15.
The event tends to favour players who have experience of playing the course before. In the last 22 years, 18 of the winners have recorded a top 14 finish here at Colonial prior to their win. Indeed, 17 of those 18 winners had recorded a top 10 finish at Colonial prior to donning the winner's plaid jacket. It is also significant to note that in the last eleven editions of this tournament, eight of the winners recorded a top 14 finish in the year prior to winning. Previous form here counts for a lot.
Colonial isn't a course that favours debutants given there has only been one player in the past 22 years who has won on his debut - Sergio Garcia in 2001.
Last year's winner, Jason Kokrak, was 49th the week before but was 13th in his last start before that. The 2020 event was the first event after the hiatus for Covid-19 so Daniel Berger had no recent form to analyse. The champions of 2019 and 2017, Kevin Na and Kevin Kisner, had shown little form in the weeks preceding their win so it is possible to find something at Colonial.
Last year's winner, Jason Kokrak, was 35th coming into the event. Prior to that the winners ranked 106-52-5-43-2-23-2-111. This isn't an event where we usually see shock winners.
Sixteen of the past nineteen champions have been American.
SG: Off The Tee
The last five winners have ranked 1-53-21-4-47. It's not essential to be dominant off the tee.
The last six winners have ranked 5-33-28-9-1-82. Accuracy off the tee is marginally preferred to distance. That shouldn't come as a surprise given this was the course Annika Sorenstam chose to compete with the men when appearing as the first female professional on the PGA Tour in 2003.
The last six winners have ranked 1-44-82-23-64-23. Jason Kokrak topped the stats last year but distance off the tee definitely isn't required this week.
The last five winners have ranked 8-11-1-1-25. Approach play is crucial at Colonial Country Club.
Greens In Regulation
The last six winners have ranked 2-5-1-1-2-25. Hitting the small greens this week is a definite advantage.
SG: Around The Green
The last five winners have ranked 61-48-79-28-3.
The last four winners have ranked 49-37-17-30.
The last six winners have ranked 7-12-2-25-5-2. A good week with the putter is needed.
After a gentle start at the opening two holes, players then face the ‘Horrible Horseshoe,’ two difficult par 4s and a 250+ yard par 3. These three holes (3rd - 5th) ranked the three toughest in 2020, averaging a collective 0.51 shots over par.
The 1st and 2nd holes are traditionally the easiest holes on the course.
17 and 18 offer birdie opportunities, both played under par last year and have done so regularly in recent times.
Fast or Slow Start
Four of the last five winners have been inside the top 10 after the opening round. It is vital to be up with the leaders at halfway given that four of the last five winners have been inside the top two after 36 holes.