THIS is the third year in a row the PGA WEST Stadium Course, PGA WEST’s Nicklaus Tournament Course and La Quinta CC co-host the CareerBuilder Challenge.
All the pros team up with a professional and play each course when a 54-hole cut of low 70s and ties will move back to the Stadium Course for the final round.
Stadium Golf Course: 7300 yards, par 72
Rated one of the top 100 courses in the world by Golf Magazine, the Stadium is also the fourth toughest course in the USA according to Golf Digest and is a great challenge.
The Pete Dye-designed track sculpted spectator seating in the natural terrain, making it feel like a stadium at times, hence the name. There is not easy finish on this course with the island green of the 17th and the water-lined 18th. There are also five sets of tees which will really test the players.
Nicklaus Tournament Course: 7204 yards, par 72
The Tournament Course was designed by Jack Nicklaus and has two island greens. This is a ball striker’s course and although forgiving off the tee it can very demanding around the greens.
La Quinta Country Club: 7060 yards, par 72
There are five lakes on La Quinta Country Club course and come into play on seven holes. Some of the professionals have called the greens “some of the finest on Tour”.
I have to go with two of my selections from last week. The first is Brian Harman who played really well at the Sony Open opening with 64 and 63 for the first two rounds. He just couldn’t buy a putt in the final two rounds but his GIR stats were brilliant with an 83.33% average for the last 18 holes.
His form is nothing short of amazing with four top-five finishes and a T8 in his last five outings and is sitting on a total of 56 under. In his last two appearances at the CareerBuilders he’s finished T11 and T3, both at 18 under (270).
- GIR: 78.61 (5th)
- Putting: 1.056 (12th).
I said last week Kevin Kisner ticked all the boxes for the Sony Open and he did. His stats for the tourney were what I expected with the exception of the third round when he was also struggling a bit on the greens. He started last week 68, 64 but a third-round 71 put him out of the running but a 67 in the fourth left him T24 on 10 under.
He was one of my Players to Watch this year and I see no reason not to pick him again this week. He is going to be a true force in the game and will improve on his one win last season.
- GIR: 73.6% (T44th)
- Putting: 1.301 (6th)