Betting Picks for the 2021 Honda Classic

| March 16, 2021 10:53 am PDT

Lots of the top-ranked golfers are skipping the Honda Classic – not because of a scheduling conflict or because they’re seeking rest after THE PLAYERS. It’s because the Champion Course at PGA National represents one of the toughest tests in golf, and not everyone is in the mood to grind.

Padraig Harrington has talked about tossing and turning at night just thinking about what lies ahead when he arrives at the Bear Trap. Specifically, the fear of standing on the 15th tee trying to navigate the devilish par-3.

Knowing the wind will be blowing and pars will be at a premium, let’s get into some Honda Classic predictions for 2021.

We’ll start with a quick peek at who’s won here in recent years.

Honda Classic Results – Past Winners at PGA National

After being played at multiple venues in the Sunshine State from 1972-2006, the Honda Classic has been contested at PGA National’s Champion Course every year since 2007. During that stretch, a player has finished double-digits under-par on just three occasions. 

Winners of The Honda Classic at PGA National
Year Winner Winning Score Winning Margin
2020 Sungjae Im -6 1
2019 Keith Mitchell -9 1
2018 Justin Thomas -8 Playoff
2017 Rickie Fowler -12 4
2016 Adam Scott -9 1
2015 Padraig Harrington -6 Playoff
2014 Russell Henley -8 Playoff
2013 Michael Thompson -9 2
2012 Rory McIlroy -12 2
2011 Rory Sabbatini -9 1
2010 Camilo Villegas -13 5
2009 Y.E. Yang -9 1
2008 Ernie Els -6 1
2007 Mark Wilson -5 Playoff

The Champion Course is littered with hazards and features lots of doglegs. Driver gets taken out of the players’ hands on several holes, hence, lots of plotters have performed favorably here in the past.

As you consider making Honda Classic picks, remember that steady gales are a theme in Palm Beach Gardens in March. You must strike your golf ball solidly in order to prevail under these conditions.

2021 Honda Classic Pick to Win

Lots of guys can hit stingers and keep the ball under the wind. However, if there’s someone in this field who can do it better than Joaquin Niemann, you’ll have to point him out.

Currently slotted 12th in the FedEx Cup Points standings, Niemann’s ascension in 2021 has been fast and furious. Ranked 71st in the world in August at the time of his last missed cut, Joaquin is now comfortably inside the top 30 thanks to a superb stretch of golf.

  • 13 straight made cuts
  • 29th or better in 11 of his last 13 starts

Those searching for a weakness in Niemann’s game – good luck.

The 22-year-old ranks 3rd in total driving, 10th in GIR, and 21st in putting average. He’s 5th on tour in birdies per round, 3rd in scoring average, and 9th in driving distance. Aside from being the total package, his game was trending in the right direction each day at TPC Sawgrass.

Joaquin Niemann – SG: Total at the 2021 PLAYERS Championship
Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4
0.805 1.039 1.085 1.577

Lurking at +1600 to hoist the hardware at most of the top golf betting sites, I latched onto Niemann at +1800 at BetUS.

  • Joaquin Niemann

Best Bets for The Honda Classic in 2021

Who else is primed to play well this week?

Daniel Berger and Sungjae Im are the two favorites for a reason. Lee Westwood’s form of late has been sublime – save for some erratic driving under the pressure this past Sunday. Talor Gooch is a fantastic wind player and is coming off a T5 at THE PLAYERS, but his Honda Classic odds have been juiced up accordingly. 

As for a couple of additional betting predictions for the Honda Classic, both of these caught my attention.

Doug Ghim to Finish Top 10

A 78 on Sunday cost Ghim a whole bunch of money and a chunk of valuable FedEx Cup points, but the experience gained might be worth it in the long haul. 37th or better in five of his last six starts tells me Ghim is getting more and more comfortable playing on the big stage. I love his chances this week at PGA National.

Doug starred at the University of Texas and now resides in Las Vegas – a 15-20 mph breeze won’t bother him in the least.

Dylan Frittelli to Finish Top 20

Let’s stick with the contingency of former Longhorn golfers and target one who was educated in Austin just before Ghim. Three straight MCs leading into THE PLAYERS is worrisome, but nothing Frittelli did in Ponte Vedra Beach gives me cause for concern.

Dylan led the way in SG: Around-the-Green and was 7th in SG: Tee-to-Green. The 30-year-old South African is making his fourth consecutive appearance at the Honda Classic; his best finish here was 11th in 2018.

Michael Wynn
Michael Wynn

As a former Division I collegiate golfer, Michael Wynn loves writing about golf. He's also an expert in most of America's most popular sports, writing extensively for on football, basketball, and baseball.

Michael's a Las Vegas native and has been with the company since 2017.

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