The PGA Tour is in the Lone Star State this week for the Valero Texas Open. Andrew Landry is defending champion in the last event before next week’s U.S. Masters
Valero Texas Open Preview, TV Times
Andrew Landry is defending champion in the Valero Texas Open this week at TPC San Antonio. Rickie Fowler, Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth are all on the start sheet as players complete their final preparations for next week’s Masters tournament.
Dating back to 1922, the Texas Open is one of the oldest tournaments on the PGA Tour, past winners including: Walter Hagen, Byron Nelson, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Lee Trevino.
Last year Andrew Landry claimed his first PGA Tour title in this competition, winning by two shots in his home state of Texas.
The Oaks Course at TPC San Antonio was designed by Greg Norman with input from Sergio Garcia. Opened for play in 2010, it’s a natural-looking layout with huge bunkers and sprawling greens. Many of the fairways are framed by stands of mature oaks giving the course its name.
It has been one of the more testing courses visited by the PGA Tour with narrow fairways skirted with bushes. Back in 2011, Kevin Na made a 16 on the par-4 9th hole. He had so many swipes at the ball in the scrub that he lost count and had to consult with playing partners and the TV to work out what to write on the card. But, this year the course should be playing a little easier with widened fairways and shorter rough.
The weather forecast looks pretty good for the early action, with only light winds predicted. It should be warm for the first couple of days, cooling slightly at the weekend with a chance of less friendly weather moving in.
Venue: TPC San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas Date: April 4-7 Course stats: par 72, 7,435 yards Purse: $7,500,000 Defending champion: Andrew Landry (-17)
How to watch the Valero Texas Open
TV Coverage: Thursday 4 – Sky Sports Golf from 9pm and Sky Sports Main Event from 10pm. Featured groups on Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event from 1.30pm Friday 5 – Sky Sports Golf from 9pm. Featured groups on Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event from 1.30pm Saturday 6 – Sky Sports Golf from 6pm and Sky Sports Main Event from 7pm Sunday 7 – Sky Sports Golf and Sky Sports Main Event from 6pm
Not a Sky Sports customer and want to watch the Valero Texas Open?
Players to watch:
Tony Finau – He’s being playing well and although he was knocked out of the match play by eventual champ Kevin Kisner, that should have allowed him a little time to rest. He was tied third in this event in 2017.
Matt Kuchar – Lost out in the final at Austin CC, but has been playing great golf this year and has two wins to his name for the season. Has a good record at TPC San Antonio.
Jim Furyk – Enjoying a renaissance this season, he’s playing great golf and will look to continue his run this week.
Key hole: The par 5s. The shortest on the course is the 14th at 567 yards so, depending on the wind, any of them could play as a three-shotter. The longer hitters will have a distinct advantage on these holes.
Skills required: Finding fairways. At 7,435 yards, you’d think length was the most important factor at TPC San Antonio. But, with bunkers and huge trees lining the fairways, driving the ball straight is also essential.
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Fergus is Golf Monthly's resident expert on the history of the game and has written extensively on that subject. He is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and his passion for the sport was bolstered during his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and the history section of "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin , also of Golf Monthly.
Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?
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