There are around 24 million golfers in the US, making it one of the top 10 most popular sports in the country.
Millions of us love to play golf. Still more of us get a buzz out of watching it, with the US audience for The Masters reaching 13 million in 2018.
If you enjoy watching golf, then you can make it even more exciting by betting on it. Not only will you be more invested in the game, but you might also make a bit of money.
If you’re interested in giving golf betting a try then read on as we take a look at seven top golf betting tips.
1. Always Look for Value
If you want to be successful in your betting over the long term, then you need to look for value.
Value bets are those where the odds that you receive are higher than your bet’s chance of winning. Value bets won’t always win, but in the long run, if you always take value, you’re far more likely to turn a profit.
Finding value bets is a big challenge. Opting for favorites is unlikely to provide value as these players will be heavily backed, driving down the odds. Instead, try to find players who have a chance of winning, but are priced relatively high. You only need one of these bets to come in to earn a big win.
2. Cover Multiple Golfers
If you bet on a single winner for any tournament, you have one shot of winning.
One stray drive that ends up in the water, and you can kiss your stake goodbye. It’s much more effective to mitigate this risk by covering a number of golfers.
Obviously, it will reduce your overall profits, as you will lose the stakes of all the bets on the golfers that didn’t win. It’s still far more profitable to back several players and land the winner than it is to back one and make no profit at all.
3. Look at the Lengths of Holes and Courses
Different players have different strengths that are better suited to specific courses.
If a player has a great short game, but can’t hit the ball that far off the tee, then they’re less likely to get a win over a long course than a short one. Conversely, when someone like Rory McIlroy can hit huge drives, he has a better chance over a longer course than his competitors.
The overall length of a course will give you an indication of which types of players are more likely to succeed. If you really want to take a deep dive, you could even consider the lengths of individual holes to estimate what impact the distance will have on the outcome.
4. Don’t Back Players Too Close to the Off
The vast majority of bettors place their money quite close to the start of a tournament or round.
As more and more people pile on their bets, this will force down the odds for the most heavily backed players. What might have been good value the day before the tournament started will no longer be so with one hour to go.
By the same token, don’t place your bets too early. There’s nothing worse than seeing the odds on a player go up and up after you’ve already put your money down. Take a look at when the odds tend to peak pre-tournament and aim to back your players at the highest price.
5. Consider the Weather
Some players thrive when the weather is rough. Others are completely put off their game.
This can give you a huge advantage if you take this into consideration. If you do your research and find that bad weather is forecast, then the player who has a great record in poor conditions could be a great value bet.
This is particularly true of links golf courses where the wind can be a major factor in deciding the outcome. Do your research and be ready to change your intended bet if the weather forecasts change closer to the off. You could even choose to place your bet during play.
6. Take the Course into Account
The phrase horses for courses is definitely applicable to golf.
Some players have love affairs with particular courses. Others flinch just at the thought of playing them. Tiger Woods has seven wins and one-second place finish at Torrey Pines, for example.
When a golfer has had multiple successes at a specific course, then you may be able to find value there. Their chances of success are probably higher than the odds will state.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, if a player has had a nightmare every time they have played a specific course, it’s probably best to steer well clear of them.
7. Be Wary of Big Names
When you first start golf betting, it’s often hard to look beyond the big names.
This is unlikely to be a successful strategy in the long term. Big names are always heavily backed, which will drive down their prices. Even Tiger Woods has lost 273 of the 354 tournaments that he’s played in. In many of those, he was the clear favorite with low odds.
There is more value in looking a little further down the field to consistent golfers who are priced higher than they should be. You should often be able to find these gems, with most of the money being placed on the big names.
There is rarely value to be found in backing the favorite.
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