Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Field Ranking Pages Enhanced - Strokes Gained & Other Stats

 Field Ranking Page for 2016 Valero Texas Open with new metrics

The 'Field Rankings' page has been enhanced with new metrics for strokes gained, DraftKings and scoring average. This page is available on the 'Predictions' menu in the member section of Golf Predictor. As shown in the image above, six new options have been added to the 'Metric' dropdown list on the 'Field Ranking' page. These metrics are for total strokes gained, strokes gained tee to green, strokes gained putting, DraftKings salary, DraftKings average points per game and season scoring average. That brings the total number of metrics on this page to 29. There is also a new chart link along the top of the data table, which shows the top performers for each of these new metrics graphically.

Note that in relation to the new metrics added, the strokes gained information and charts are not available prior to week 14 of the 2016 GP season. In relation to the DraftKings information and charts are not available prior to week 24 of the 2015 GP season. Also, the DraftKings and strokes gained metrics are only available for US PGA Tour events and you may have to refresh the page to see the changes. Non-subscribers can only see the new season scoring average chart and those golfers with field rankings in a given metric from 11-25 and also ranked between 11-25 in the GP rankings. Therefore, sign up today and reap the full benefits of Golf Predictor, the premium professional golf statistics site.



Monday, 25 April 2016

2016 - Week 17 Predictions/Statistics Online

The predictions and statistics for this week, the Volvo China Open (European PGA Tour) and the Zurich Classic of New Orleans (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. No big names are teeing it up in China this week and the tournament is being held on a new course this year. Neither of these facts make it very easy to call, but Joost Luiten will be hoping to build on his recent great form. There are a few big names playing in Louisiana, where world number one Jason Day and two other members of the world's top ten headlining the field.

2016 - Week 16 Winners

Soo-min Lee (ranked 31st by Golf Predictor) won the Shenzhen International on the European PGA Tour. The 22 year old South Korean won his first tour title with a two shot win over Joost Luiten and Brandon Stone. Despite throwing away a five shot lead earlier in the week, Lee bounced back in style to win in only his sixth start. In the leading pack with three holes to go, Lee birdied the sixteenth and made a terrific eagle on seventeen to exorcise the demons of Malaysia from two months ago. Our top ranked player, Bubba Watson, finished strongly again this year, closing with  a 66 (-6) for tied 8th. Overall, we had eleven of the top nineteen plus ties (11/23) in the weather affected event, which finished on Monday.

Charley Hoffman (ranked 10th by Golf Predictor) won the Valero Texas Open on the US PGA Tour. The 39 year old American won his fourth tour title after a series of weekend capitulations in recent months. Hoffman improved on his impressive course record by getting up and down from a bunker at the last to beat Patrick Reed by a shot. Our top ranked player, Branden Grace, finished well for tied 9th and we had ten of the top twenty one plus ties (10/24) in total.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Strokes Gained Stats added to Golf Predictor


Snippet of new Strokes Gained page for the 2016 RBC Heritage

New Strokes Gained panel on Prediction Data page for Jason Day ahead of the 2016 RBC Heritage

I am pleased to announce the addition of strokes gained functionality to US PGA Tour events on Golf Predictor. This new feature was suggested by a user (although I was already considering it!) and is available from the new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page on the Predictions menu. Strokes gained stats are a relatively new PGA Tour initiative and are calculated from the mountain of data produced by ShotLink. Unlike most other tour stats (e.g. driving accuracy, GIR etc), which largely cancel each other out, strokes gained stats are widely regarded as the most accurate in judging a golfer's performance in relation to his peers.

The average number of shots the tour pros take to get into the hole from a variety of distances is calculated and each golfer's performance is compared to that average value to produce a positive (better than average) or negative (worse) number for every shot. These numbers are added up at the end of a round and the field average is also factored in to produce a total strokes gained number for each player for the round. This total strokes gained is currently broken down into two main categories: strokes gained tee to green and strokes gained putting. These two categories together show the long game and putting prowess of the golfer and if you add them together, you get his total strokes gained.

A snippet of he new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page can be seen in the first screenshot above for the 2016 RBC Heritage. The new columns are the rank in total strokes gained on the PGA Tour (S Rk), total strokes gained (Tot), strokes gained tee to green (TTG), strokes gained putting (Putt) and the number of rounds these stats were calculated over (Rnds). As shown above, the rank in total strokes gained is colour coded,  with colours from green to yellow to red used. Green shades represent good rankings and red shades represent bad rankings, with deeper shades representing better/worse rankings. Yellow represents mid rankings from the roughly 210 golfers on the US PGA Tour with available total strokes gained stats every week.

For tournaments with these new stats, a new Strokes Gained panel has been added to the 'Prediction Data' page for each golfer. This new panel is directly above the panel with links to the golfer's tour stats pages and is shown in the second screenshot above for Jason Day, also for the 2016 RBC Heritage.

 Some notes on this new metric:
  1. If a golfer is not in the list of the roughly 210 golfers with strokes gained data that is made available by the US PGA Tour each week, all his strokes gained data will default to 'n/a' on the new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page.
  2. If the golfer is not in the weekly list, the new Strokes Gained panel on the Prediction Data page is hidden for that golfer. UPDATE: see note under this post for change to this.
  3. Remember that some golfers with rankings for total strokes gained will not be in the field on any given week. For example, this may mean that a golfer with a ranking of 10 for total strokes gained may be the best in the field if the nine golfers ahead of him aren't playing that week. 
  4. The strokes gained in each category (total, tee to green and putting) are all shown as per round averages, i.e. the stokes gained in each case divided by the counting rounds.
  5. I plan to leave the strokes gained information in the system until the end of the GP season, after which it will be deleted and replaced with the data from the new season.
  6. This strokes gained information is only available for US PGA Tour events from the 2016 Masters on. On Golf Predictor, this corresponds to tournaments with a Tour value of "US" or "Both".
  7. Further to the above point, all matching tournaments for the current season with this strokes gained information are automatically shown in the Tournaments dropdown list, regardless of whether it is a US only event or is on both tours.
  8. Due to the above points, you can not change the tour or season dropdown values on this new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page. It will always just show the current season US PGA Tour events, so there is no need to change them. They are there for display purposes only.
  9. Strokes gained stats are calculated based on the wraparound US PGA Tour season, while Golf Predictor season stats are calculated based on the GP Season (calendar year). 
  10. As this new functionality increases my weekly workload, it may or not be available for some or all future tournaments. If enough people find it useful, I'll do it for as many tournaments as possible. Otherwise, I may just do it for the bigger events.
  11. When available, the strokes gained data will appear on the Monday or Tuesday of the tournament week, depending on the availability of said information.
  12. A colour code table is displayed on the new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page, as shown in the first screenshot above. 
  13. It appears that some tournaments are not counted for strokes gained purposes, e.g. The Masters. Most golfers have the same stats as the previous week, although Danny Willett and Rafa Cabrera-Bello have entered the list. I'm not certain what's going on there, but I can only go by what's on the official list each week!
  14. Strokes gained stats are not available for the European PGA Tour.
  15. You may have to refresh a page, e.g. the golfer Prediction Data page, to see the changes.  

In addition, 11 new charts are on the Rankings (Strokes Gained) and Prediction Data pages. The new charts added are:
  1. Total Strokes Gained (Rank) for a golfer over the current GP season
  2. Total Strokes Gained for a golfer over the current GP season
  3. Strokes Gained Tee to Green for a golfer over the current GP season
  4. Strokes Gained Putting for a golfer over the current GP season
  5. Highest Total Strokes Gained (Rank) in a tournament field
  6. Lowest Total Strokes Gained (Rank) in a tournament field
  7. Highest Total Strokes Gained in a tournament field
  8. Lowest Total Strokes Gained in a tournament field
  9. Highest Strokes Gained Tee to Green in a tournament field
  10. Lowest Strokes Gained Tee to Green in a tournament field
  11. Highest Strokes Gained Putting in a tournament field
  12. Lowest Strokes Gained Putting in a tournament field

The first four charts above are in the new Strokes Gained panel in the Prediction Data page for each golfer and show the progression of each metric through the current GP season. The eight remaining charts are on the Rankings (Strokes Gained) page and pick out the best/worst golfers for each metric in the tournament field. Note that the strokes gained only started in Golf Predictor for The Masters. Also, total strokes gained (rank) and total strokes gained for a tournament are equivalent, since the highest rank (1) is the highest total strokes gained and so on.

These charts bring the total number of charts on the site to 475. I trust you will find this new premium strokes gained functionality useful. Any feedback (via comments on this article or email) would be most welcome. Like other premium features, non-subscribers can only see this strokes gained information for golfers ranked 11-25 in the prediction rankings. Also, only subscribers can see the strokes gained charts on the new Rankings (Strokes Gained) page. Therefore, sign up today and reap the full benefits of Golf Predictor, the premium professional golf statistics site.

Monday, 18 April 2016

2016 - Week 16 Predictions/Statistics Online

The predictions and statistics for this week, the Shenzhen International (European PGA Tour) (European PGA Tour) and the Valero Texas Open (US PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. Not a great field in either event this week, but at least there are six of the top twenty in the world teeing it up in Texas. After a full week on European soil, the European Tour heads off to China, where once again, Bubba Watson has taken the trouble to fly half away around the world to headline the field!

Sunday, 17 April 2016

2016 - Week 15 Winners

Andrew Johnston (ranked 54th by Golf Predictor) won the Real Club Valderrama Open de Espana on the European PGA Tour. The 27 year old Englishman won his maiden tour title with a one shot victory over Joost Luiten on the demanding Valderrama layout. Johnson (+1) became the first golfer with an over par winning score in a regular European tour event in 20 years as the weather and the course made scoring difficult .Our top ranked player, tournament host Sergio Garcia, rallied after a poor start to finish in third place and we had twelve of the top nineeen plus ties (12/25).

Branden Grace (ranked 6th by Golf Predictor) won the RBC Heritage on the US PGA Tour. The 27 year old South African won his his first tour title with an impressive final day performance on the testing Harbour Town layout. Grace finished with a fine 66 (-5) to win by two over British duo Russell Knox and Luke Donald. Our top ranked player, Jason Day, rebounded from a disastrous Saturday performance to finish tied 23rd. Overall, we had only seven of the top fourteen plus ties (7/22) in the tricky conditions.

Monday, 11 April 2016

2016 - Week 15 Predictions/Statistics Online

The predictions and statistics for this week, the Real Club Valderrama Open de Espana* (European PGA Tour) and the RBC Heritage (US PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. After the excitement of The Masters, it's back to the grind this week! While most of the big names are resting after the exertions of Augusta, there are several big names playing in South Carolina. Not least among them is world number one Jason Day, where fans will have plenty of time to admire his play! Meanwhile in Europe, the rank and file will be chomping at the bit in Spain after a three week hiatus from normal tournament play. This year's tournament is being held on one of the best courses in Spain at Valderrama and Sergio Garcia is headlining and hosting the event.


*The verbose full name is the Real Club Valderrama Open de España, hosted by the Sergio Garcia Foundation!

2016 - Week 14 Winner

Danny Willett (ranked 9th by Golf Predictor) won the first major of the year, The Masters (European/US PGA Tour). The 28 year old Englishman won his first major after the dramatic collapse of the defending champion, Jordan Spieth. After a fairly unexciting first 63 holes, the tournament came alive on the back nine on Sunday when runaway leader Spieth bogeyed the tenth and eleventh holes before quadruple bogeying the short twelfth. That calamity catapulted Willett into the lead and the Sheffield man finished with aplomb to take the title. Spieth made a mini comeback and had a chance to catch Willett with a strong finish, but it was not to be. An emotional Willett took the title just a week after welcoming his first child into the world. Had the baby arrived on time, Willett would not have played at all! Our top ranked player, Jason Day, didn't fire on all cylinders, but still finished in tied 10th place. Overall, we had nine of the top seventeen plus ties (9/20).

Monday, 4 April 2016

2016 - Week 14 Predictions/Statistics Online

The predictions and statistics for this week, The Masters (European/US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. Only one tournament this week, but it's the big one! It's that time of the year again and excitement is mounting among golf fans ahead of the first major of the season at Augusta. It's wide open this year with many top players showing good form ahead of the tournament. It promises to be an exciting week's golf and I, for one, will be glued to the TV!

Sunday, 3 April 2016

2016 - Week 13 Winner

Jim Herman (ranked 101st by Golf Predictor) won the Shell Houston Open on the US PGA Tour. The 38 year old American journeyman won his first title with an impressive final day performance. With a strong field bunched around him, Herman edged ahead on the back nine. He then showed admirable composure under intense pressure to complete a fairytale one shot victory over runner up specialist Henrik Stenson. Our top ranked player, Jordan Spieth, charged early on the final day, but finished poorly for tied 13th. Overall, we had eleven of the top nineteen plus ties (11/26).

There was no event on the European PGA Tour this week.