Onto the Wyndham Championship and as ever it's the last chance saloon for players on the cusp of the Playoffs and the money list Bubble. The top 125 in the Fedex Cup will advance to The Barclays next week and secure playing rights for 2015. The top 125 in the money list will also be exempt for next season and that means a huge week for the likes of Sang Moon-Bae - 176.00 - who ranks 126 and 127 respectively in the standings.
A couple of themes are dominant at Sedgefield Country Club down the years and those are that of guys with local connections and knowledge, and those familiar with, and favouring Donald Ross designs. Brandt Snedeker is a self-confessed lover of Ross' designed courses and unsurprisingly leads the betting at 15.00 off the back of three big top 25s.
North Carolina local Webb Simpson - 17.00 - took the event down in style back in 2011 and averages 8th in his last four starts here. North Carolina born Bill Haas - 26.00 - and Tim Clark - 31.00 - who went to college in NC state are two more course specialists near the head of the betting.
The course - Sedgefield Country Club
A complete revamp of the greens at Sedgefield back around 2012 saw the annual birdie fest in Greensboro toughen up slightly for the last edition. Bermuda grass has taken over now on the surfaces and faster and firmer conditions took their toll to a degree. The course itself plays 7,130 yards to a par of 70 and and key around the tree-lined Sedgefield track is accuracy: positioning your tee shots will be key to finding the correct approach angles into severely undulating greens, largely from back to front. Putting is also usually a premium at the Wyndham, more so than many events. Fairways are not too tight nor rough generally too penal but ball placement for approaches into the tough, roll-off and catchment area equipped greens is the brief.
Three from the pack
I've mentioned a few with local ties but arguably the most prominent is North Carolina State Alum and Raleigh, NC resident Carl Pettersson. The big man 'owns' Sedgefield Country Club, currently jointly holding the course record, and he boasts the all time earnings accolade. The big man - who enjoys an ice cream and a few bottles of beer nightly - has a 1st and two 4th place finishes here in six and not many know the track's intricacies more. The Swede trades at 41.00 or 9.00 the place.
Martin Laird is significantly overpriced for me this week at 61.00 or 13.00. Laird lies 136 in the Fedex Cup rankings and will be looking for a big performance off the back of progressive form reading 41-29-6, the last of which came in Reno. Laird has secured a top five at Wyndham back in 2008 but hasn't needed to appear in the last three seasons. The Scot enjoys this type of test where thinking and plotting your way around is required. Martin is 33rd in total driving and while the big stick won't even be needed much at Sedgefield, this suggests he has plenty of control from the tee. The 31 year old mentioned at the beginning of the season he'd be taking a step back to spend more time with the family but now with a succession of events under his belt, we could be about to see the best of him at a price.
Brendon De Jonge - 61.00 or 13.00 - is never far away from a low round and always seems to be bubbling under the surface. Current and course form average in around the top 30 mark and a win is just around the corner for the big fella. For me, Sedgefield is the ideal track for Brendon, coming in with a fairways hit clip of 85% at Valhalla and two recent 65s at the John Deere. De Jonge is a regular atop the birdie stats - ranking 7th in 2014 - and is also 7th in the low round department this season with a 62, amazingly coming at the Wells Fargo.
Andrew Svoboda is in the staking plan this week but at a bigger price we have Scott Piercy - 81.00 or 17.00 Piercy can be forgiven last week's PGA performance while he's coming back from injury and he generally seems to play well at this time of year. Recent end of summer feats for the American include wins in Reno and Canada and indeed after the latter in 2012 he was being dubbed the "hottest golfer on the planet". A return to a similar course to Sedgefield in Canada a few week's back saw a top 25 for Piercy and included rounds of 66-65. Piercy recorded a top 10 at Sedgefield last time he teed it up in 2010.