Monday, 21 August 2017

2017 - Week 34 Predictions/Statistics Online

The predictions and statistics for this week, the Made in Denmark (European PGA Tour) and The Northern Trust (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. It's the first week of the lucrative FedEx Cup play-offs on the US PGA Tour and once again, there is an impressive line up for the re-branded event. Sergio Garcia is the only top ten player in the world not teeing it up at Glen Oaks Club. That doesn't leave much top talent for the European Tour event, but Thomas Pieters is back to defend his title in Denmark.

Sunday, 20 August 2017

2017 - Week 33 Winners

Adrian Otaegui (ranked 13th by Golf Predictor) won the Saltire Energy Paul Lawrie Match Play on the European PGA Tour. The 24 year old Spaniard stunned local favourite Marcel Siem with a 2&1 victory in Germany. Despite being three down at the turn and two down with five to play, Otaegui reeled off three late birdies to turn the match around and snatch his first tour title. Our top ranked player, Bradley Dredge, fell at the first hurdle in the restricted field match play event.

Jason Norris (ranked 75th by Golf Predictor) won the Fiji International on the European PGA Tour. The 44 year old Australian won his first tour title with a fairytale victory in the South Pacific. Norris shot a final round 67 to win by four shots and secure the biggest victory of his twenty one year career. In doing so, he overcame two near death experiences, including an horrific accident in which his jaw was broken in fourteen places. He also is battling the yips on the green and almost gave up the game several times, contemplating a career as a forklift driver! Our top ranked player, Scott Hend, finished in tied 24th and we only had eight of the top twenty four plus ties (8/29) in this weak fielded event.

Henrik Stenson (ranked 1st by Golf Predictor) won the Wyndham Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 41 year old Swede won his first title since his sensational 2016 Open Championship victory with an impressive display at Sedgefield Country Club. Stenson finished strongly with four birdies in his last six holes for a one shot winning margin over fellow fast finisher Ollie Schniederjans. Stenson was our top ranked player and in an event where most of the bigger names failed to perform, we had only a disappointing four of the top sixteen  plus ties (4/23) in total. 

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Spider/Radar Charts added to Golf Predictor

Jordan Spieth's average finish in multiple historical metrics ahead of the 2017 US PGA Championship. Shows him relatively strong in his last five events and relatively weak in similar weather.

Comparing the field rankings for multiple golfers (tee-off group) ahead of the 2017 US PGA Championship. Love in particular doesn't have FR data for many metrics, so he is assigned the large default value for those.

As above, but with Padraig Harrington's data highlighted for extra legibility.

I am pleased to announce the addition of useful new spider (also known as radar and less commonly, star) charts to Golf Predictor. Spider charts are a type of statistical chart that show the difference in multiple parameters visually at a glance and as such, are very useful for comparing certain stats on Golf Predictor. This can be seen in the screenshots above, for the 2017 US PGA Championship. The main components of a spider chart are:
  1. The spokes emanating from the centre of the chart. The spokes are displayed equidistant from each other and there is one spoke per parameter displayed.
  2. The data points are shown on the spokes. The further away the point is from the origin at the centre, the bigger the value is. On Golf Predictor, this means the worse the stat is.
  3. The points (the parameter values that make up the data set) are joined together to form a polygon. The number of sides to the polygon and its shape depends on the number of parameters displayed on the chart and their values.
  4. There may be more than one data set (polygon) displayed on the same chart, e.g. the data for more than one golfer may be displayed with different colour polygons. This is shown in the second screenshot above, where the polygons for the golfers in a tee-off group for the 2017 US PGA Championship are plotted in different colours.
  5. The concentric grid lines on the spider chart are for scale purposes. It is possible to number this scale, but it doesn't look good and was somewhat confusing with the charting library (see below) that was used.

While ideally, a golfer should have the best statistics possible, in the real world, most top golfers will have some mixture of relatively good, so-so and bad stats. A spider chart tells you immediately where a golfer's relative strength and weaknesses are. For example, the first screenshot above, you can see the average finishing position for Jordan Spieth in multiple relevant historical categories. This shows that his recent performances (last five events) have been relatively good as this value is close to the origin. This, of course, is thanks mainly to his win in The Open! You can also see at a glance that his results in similar weather to what was forecasted for Quail Hollow are relatively bad, being furthest from the origin of the chart.

The ideal spider chart for golfer performance (where small values are good) is a polygon with all data points being as close to the origin as possible. Spieth's chart above is not that far off this, except for his similar weather performance. Some notes on these new spider charts:
  1. There has to be at least three data points to draw a spider/radar chart (you can not draw a polygon without at least three points!).
  2. Initially, I wasted a lot of time trying to use the Flot spider charts plug-in (Flot is used for all the other charts on site, bar the box plots), but I was not happy with the features or the documentation. Eventually I found RGraph, which has some attractive and easy to use spider charts, so I switched to them instead.
  3. Zero data points (i.e. missing values) are left off the single polygon spider (i.e. single golfer) charts. This proved to be the best way to handle this situation. The number of omitted zero point categories is printed above the chart. Leaving them in caused readability issues for certain data sets, as did defaulting them to a high number, e.g. 250.
  4. Zero data points are included on the multiple polygon (i.e. multiple golfers) spider charts, as some of the golfers charted may have a value for that parameter. In this situation, the best option was to have the missing values default to a value slightly above the highest value plotted. When this happens, a message is printed above the chart with the default value. 
  5. Despite the above point, some of the polygons (i.e. data for some golfers) on a multiple polygon spider chart may be difficult to read, depending on the values for the golfers chosen. For example, if you chose to compare stats for someone like Rory McIlroy and someone with poor or no stats, McIlroy's polygon will be hard to read, due to having to plot very good and very bad stats on the same chart. The only workarounds for this are to omit the golfer(s) with poor/no stats from the comparison or compare the stats for similar level golfers (this obviously is not an option if you are comparing a tee-off group!).
  6. Similar to above, a polygon on a spider chart with one or two bad values may be hard to read if all other values are good values. For example, the field ranks stats for Jordan Spieth ahead of the 2017 US PGA Championship are unbelievable, except for his tournament history rank (and his cut streak rank to a much lesser extent). This makes his field rank chart somewhat difficult to read.
  7. On multiple polygon (i.e. multiple golfers) spider charts, you can click on the golfer names in the legend (key) to highlight the values for that golfer. That is very useful for charts with data for more than one golfer, especially where the data overlaps considerably. This is shown in the third screenshot above, where the polygon for Padraig Harrington in the tee-off group for the 2017 US PGA Championship has been highlighted.
  8. The number of polygons (i.e. golfers) on a spider chart is limited to a maximum of four for legibility reasons. However, any more than two can be difficult to read,  but as mentioned above, you can highlight a polygon to see the data for a golfer more clearly.
  9. Also for legibility reasons, polygons on multiple polygon spider charts are not filled in, while they are on single polygon charts.
  10. It was not possible to show the data point values on the chart. However, you can hover over a point to see its value, as shown in the first two screenshots above.
  11. The chart scales automatically, based on the biggest value to display. They may mean that a spider chart for a golfer with all good values may look similar to a chart for a golfer with all bad values. Clicking on a data point will indicate whether the values or all good or bad.
  12. Some of the new spider charts have average values displayed above the chart, where this is useful, e.g. the overall average on the early/mid/late season chart (see below).
  13. I have added a new icon for spider charts. At the very small size (14x14 pixels), it was difficult to create one that didn't just look like a blob! 
  14. You may have to reload any page you have opened in the recent past in order to see these new chart links.
  15. The overview table on the Compare Groups page had slightly different columns from its counterpart in the Compare Golfer page. That has been corrected and the same region performance has been added to the table on the Compare Groups page instead of the world ranking (this is available by choosing the last option in the 'Stats to Compare' dropdown list.
  16. Only subscribers can see the great new multiple polygon charts on the compare pages (see below), so sign up today to see these useful new golfer comparison charts.
There has been a total of six new spider charts added to the pages on the site that show statistical information for a golfer or set of golfers. Specifically, the spider charts have been added to the following pages:
  1. Prediction Data page: two single polygon (i.e. single golfer) spider charts; one for field ranks and one for historical performance (e.g. same course, season, last five events etc.) for each golfer in the field. These two new charts are accessible from the General panel.
  2. Golfer Data page: one single polygon spider chart for regular/major/WGC/FedEx average result in each golfer's career.
  3. Season Segment Data page: one single polygon spider chart for early/mid/late season performance for each golfer.
  4. Compare Golfer/Compare Groups page: one multiple polygon (i.e. multiple golfers) spider chart for the historical performance (e.g. same course, season, last five events etc.) of the chosen golfers/tee-off group.
  5.  Compare Field Ranks/Compare Groups page: one multiple polygon spider chart for the field ranks of the chosen golfers/tee-off group (see last two screenshots above).
This brings the total number of charts on the site to 485. I trust you will find these new spider charts useful as a graphical representation of (multiple) golfer performance in certain key metrics. Just another way to make Golf Predictor even better!


    Monday, 14 August 2017

    2017 - Week 33 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Saltire Energy Paul Lawrie Match Play (European PGA Tour), the Fiji International (European PGA Tour) and the Wyndham Championship (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. While there aren't many big golfing names teeing it up in either European Tour event (especially in Fiji!), there is a solid list of European Tour stalwarts teeing it up at the relocated Paul Lawrie match play event. Although Golf Predictor is designed primarily for stroke play tournaments, the match play event in Germany has also been put through the prediction engine. Note that the course in Fiji has been significantly updated since last year by local hero Vijay Singh. There are not many big names competing in America either this week, with the Wyndham Championship coming straight after the last major of the season However, there is a host of middle tier guys trying to improve/maintain their place in the FedEx Cup standings ahead of the upcoming play-offs..

    2017 - Week 32 Winner

    Justin Thomas (ranked 32nd by Golf Predictor) won the US PGA Championship on the European/US PGA Tour. The 24 year old American secured his first major title with an impressive final day performance at Quail Hollow. When most faltered after the turn on Sunday, Thomas came into his own and won by a comfortable two shots, even with a closing bogey. Our top ranked player, Hideki Matsuyama, finished poorly on the back nine for tied 6th. Overall, we had ten of the top thirteen plus ties (10/21) on the tough layout.

    Tuesday, 8 August 2017

    2016 - Top 5 Hardest Courses/Tournaments on the European PGA Tour

    Based on the average score in relation to par in the tournaments hosted on them, these were the 5 toughest courses on the European PGA Tour in the 2015 GP Season (calendar year):
    1. Club de Golf Valderrama (Real Club Valderrama Open de Espana)
    2. Oakmont CC (US Open)
    3. Four Seasons GC at Anahita (AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open)
    4. Augusta National GC (The Masters)
    5. Royal Golf Dar Es Salam (Trophee Hassan II)
    Granted, the weather and relatively weak fields may have played a part in some of these events, but on the other hand, the list is similar to lists from previous years. You can get more detailed information by looking at the 'Highest Average Round vs Par' chart on the 'Other Stats/Tourn. Stats' page in the member section of Golf Predictor.

    Click on the "Lists" category opposite to see more such lists.

    2016 - Top 5 Easiest Courses/Tournaments on the European PGA Tour

    Based on the average score in relation to par in the tournaments hosted on them, these were the 5 easiest courses on the European PGA Tour in the 2015 GP Season (calendar year):
    1. Oceânico Victoria Clube de Golfe (Portugal Masters)
    2. Earth Course, Jumeirah Golf Estates (DP World Tour Championship, Dubai)
    3. Golf Resort Bad Griesbach (Porsche European Open)
    4. GC Milano (Italian Open)  
    5. Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort (Turkish Airlines Open)
    This is somewhat similar to the same list in previous seasons. You can get more detailed information by looking at the 'Lowest Average Round vs Par' chart on the 'Other Stats/Tourn. Stats' page in the member section of Golf Predictor.

    Click on the "Lists" category opposite to see more such lists.

    2016 - Top 5 Hardest Courses/Tournaments on the US PGA Tour

    Based on the average score in relation to par in the tournaments hosted on them, these were the toughest courses/tournaments on the US PGA Tour in the 2015 GP Season (calendar year):
    1. Oakmont CC (US Open)
    2. Augusta National GC (The Masters)
    3. Royal Troon (The Open Championship)
    4. PGA National - Champion Course (The Honda Classic)
    5. Innisbrook Resort & GC (Valspar Championship)
    As usual, the US Open is the hardest tournament, but it's joined at the top by two of its fellow majors. You can get more detailed information by looking at the 'Highest Average Round vs Par' chart on the 'Other Stats/Tourn. Stats' page in the member section of Golf Predictor.

    Click on the "Lists" category opposite to see more such lists.

    2016 - Top 5 Easiest Courses/Tournaments on the US PGA Tour

    Based on the average score in relation to par in the tournaments hosted on them, these were the 5 easiest courses/tournaments on the US PGA Tour in the 2016 GP Season (calendar year):
    1. The Plantation Course (Hyundai Tournament of Champions)
    2. PGA West and sister courses (Humana Challenge in pship with the Clinton Foundation)
    3. Kuala Lumpur G & CC (CIMB Classic)
    4. RTJ Golf Trail (Grand National) (Barbasol Championship)
    5. Waialae CC (Sony Open in Hawaii)
    The top three retain their positions in the list from the previous year and Hawaii is obviously the place to go for a birdie-fest!! You can get more detailed information by looking at the 'Lowest Average Round vs Par' chart on the 'Other Stats/Tourn. Stats' page in the member section of Golf Predictor.

    Click on the "Lists" category opposite to see more such lists.

    Monday, 7 August 2017

    2017 - Week 32 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the US PGA Championship (European/US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. It's the final major of the season and the PGA Championship heads to Quail Hollow for the first time. It's the last chance for eight months for a golfer to land one of those prestigious titles, so competition is bound to be fierce!

    2017 - Week 31 Winners

    Hideki Matsuyama (ranked 4th by Golf Predictor) won the WGC - Bridgestone Invitational on the European/US PGA Tour. The 25 year old Japanese star won his second WGC title with a tour de force in Ohio. Matsuyama put on an exhibition of ball striking on the final day to set a new course record of 61 (-9). In doing so, he blew away the field and won by five shots. Our top ranked player, Jordan Spieth, finished in tied 13th and we had twelve of the top seventeen plus ties (12/23) in total.

    Chris Stroud (ranked 64th by Golf Predictor) won the Barracuda Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 35 year old American secured his first tour title at the 290th time of asking with a play-off  win in the modified Stableford event. After Stroud finished with a five point eagle to post 44 points, he was matched by Greg Owen and Richie Werenski. However Stroud wasn't to be denied his first win and he prevailed at the second extra hole over Werenski. Our top ranked player, Daniel Summerhays, finished in tied 27th and we had only eight of the top eighteen plus ties (8/25*) in the second tier event. 


    *Due to non-finishes, Barber and Flores are promoted to the top 25 of the GP rankings

    Monday, 31 July 2017

    2017 - Week 31 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the WGC - Bridgestone Invitational (European/US PGA Tour) and the Barracuda Championship (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. The WGC event has been moved back to its regular slot after being moved to facilitate the Olympics last year. Fences seem to have been mended as it is once again sanctioned on the European Tour and boasting its usual strong field. Meanwhile, the second string Stableford event in Reno has to make do with only one golfer from the top one hundred in the world rankings as all the big names playing this week are teeing it up in Ohio.

    Sunday, 30 July 2017

    2017 - Week 30 Winners

    Jordan Smith (ranked 14th by Golf Predictor) won the Porsche European Open on the European PGA Tour. The 24 year old Englishman won his maiden tour title in a play-off in Germany. After swapping the lead with defending champion Alexander Levy all day, Smith birdied the last to force a play-off. After Levy missed a short birdie putt to win on the first extra hole, Smith holed his on the next hole to take the title. Our top ranked player, Charl Schwartzel, finished in tied 12th, but we had eleven of the top nineteen plus ties (11/27*) in the weather affected event.

    Defending champion Jhonattan Vegas (ranked 44th by Golf Predictor) won the RBC Canadian Open on the US PGA Tour. The 32 year old Venezuelan won his third tour title in a play-off in Canada. After posting -21 with a closing par, Vegas and to watch and hope he wasn't overtaken by Charley Hoffman. When the American narrowly missed his eagle putt on the last for the win, they went back to the eighteenth to decide the winner. Both found sand off the tee, but Vegas was still able to power it to the back of the green in two, to a similar spot to regulation. However, this time he made a better fist of it and got up and down for the winning birdie. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, finished in tied 8th and we had nine of the top nineteen plus ties (9/22). 


    *Due to non-finishes, Fisher Jr is promoted to the top 27 of the GP Rankings.

    Monday, 24 July 2017

    2017 - Week 30 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the RBC Canadian Open (US PGA Tour) and the Porsche European Open (European PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. World number one Dustin Johnson and Open Championship runner-up Matt Kuchar are among those who have jetted over from England to tee it up in Canada this week. Not many big names at the European Open, where Charl Schwartzel makes a rare appearance at a European event. The South African is joined by three Americans, including major winner Jimmy Walker, who are staying on this side of the pond after Royal Birkdale.

    2017 - Week 29 Winners

    Jordan Spieth (ranked 3rd by Golf Predictor) won The Open Championship on the European/US PGA Tour. The young American won his third major with an amazing finish at Royal Birkdale. Despite leading by three overnight, Spieth started poorly, relinquishing his lead and even ending up among a group of trucks after taking an unplayable on the thirteenth. Having somehow escaped with a bogey on that hole, Spieth put on the afterburners and covered the next four holes in five under par. That allowed him to keep his three shot margin at the end and complete the third leg of the career grand slam at the ripe old age of 23! Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, finished poorly on Sunday for tied 54th and we had eight of the top fourteen plus ties (8/19) in the wind affected tournament. 

    Grayson Murray (ranked 5th by Golf Predictor) won the Barbasol Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 23 year old American won his maiden tour title by a single shot in sweltering Alabama. Murray became the latest first time winner (the eleventh this season) by letting his clubs do the talking, rather than his controversial Twitter account!! Despite his well documented issues with anxiety, Murray showed great composure down the stretch to take the lead on the sixteenth and par in for the victory. Indeed, it took a ballsy par putt on the last o seal the win. Our top ranked player, Daniel Summerhays, finished in 63rd and we had twelve of the top eighteen plus ties (12/26) in total in this second tier event.

    Monday, 17 July 2017

    2017 - Week 29 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, The Open Championship (European/US PGA Tour) and the Barbasol Championship (US PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. The excitement is mounting this side of the pond for the most venerable major of them all, which returns to Royal Birkdale for the first time since 2008. World number one Dustin Johnson leads the strong field and he will be aiming to add the claret jug to his burgeoning trophy cabinet! Meanwhile, a second string field is once again lining up for the US PGA Tour event in Alabama.

    Sunday, 16 July 2017

    2017 - Week 28 Winners

    Rafa Cabrera Bello (ranked 11th by Golf Predictor) won the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open on the European PGA Tour. The 33 year old Spaniard finally won his third tour title with an impressive final day performance in Scotland. Cabrera Bello closed with a course record 64 (-8) and after Callum Shinkwin took four to get down from about 10 yards over the final green, the duo finished level on -13. Shinkwin played the par five eighteenth in a similar manner again and after the Spaniard hit a great second shot to about twelve feet, it was all but over. Shinkwin still had a chance to prolong the play-off, but left his putt criminally short for the second time. That allowed the happy Cabrera Bello to end his five and a half year wait for another title. Our top ranked player, Henrik Stenson, finished tied 26th and in an event where many of the top players failed to perform in the sometimes difficult conditions, we only had six of the top nineteen plus ties (6/25).   

    Byron DeChambeau (ranked 5th by Golf Predictor) won the John Deere Classic on the US PGA Tour. The 23 year old American became the tenth first time winner on the PGA Tour this season at TPC Deere Run. DeChambeau finished superbly with two birdies for what he believed would be a tie at best. However, after Patrick Rodgers bogeyed the seventeenth and failed to bounce back at the last, the title went to the golfing scientist! Our top ranked player, Daniel Berger fading slightly on the back nine, but finished with two birdies for tied 5th. Overall, we had nine of the top nineteen plus ties (9/24).


    Monday, 10 July 2017

    2017 - Week 28 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open (European PGA Tour) and the John Deere Classic (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. It's the final week before The Open Championship and it's the last chance for a competitive tune up. There is a strong field playing in Scotland this year, with five of the top fifteen in the world rankings hoping to get some competitive links practice before heading to Royal Birkdale. However, there aren't many big names in Illinois, where Daniel Berger is headlining the field.

    Sunday, 9 July 2017

    2017 - Week 27 Winners

    Jon Rahm (ranked 4th by Golf Predictor) won the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open Hosted by the Rory Foundation on the European PGA Tour. The 22 year old Spaniard secured his first win on the European Tour at Portstewart at his first time of asking as a professional. Despite bogeying the last, Rahm won by six shots on a tournament record -24 with an impressive display on Sunday in difficult conditions. In doing so, Rahm joined his heroes Seve, Olazabal and Garcia as Spanish winners of the Irish Open. Our top ranked player, Hideki Matsuyama, finished in tied 14th and we had six of the top fourteen plus ties (6/19) in the latest Rolex Series event. 

    Xander Schauffele (ranked 28th by Golf Predictor) won the Greenbrier Classic on the US PGA Tour. The 23 year old American won his first tour title with a great final tee shot at the restored Old White TPC. Tied for the tied on the last tee, Schauffele hit his tee shot to three feet to set up what turned out to be the winning birdie. Once Robert Streb wasn't able to emulate him on the last, Schauffele became the eight first time winner this season. Our top ranked player, Patrick Reed, finished in tied 20th and we had thirteen of the top twenty plus ties (13/28*) in total.


    *Due to a non-finish, Mackenzie Hughes is promoted to the top 28 of the GP rankings. 

    Monday, 3 July 2017

    2017 - Week 27 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open Hosted by the Rory Foundation (European PGA Tour) and the Greenbrier Classic (US PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. There are not many big names teeing it up in West Virginia this week, where the tournament makes a welcome return to the schedule after being cancelled last year due to devastating floods. Meanwhile, here in Ireland, Rory McIlroy is defending the tournament he is hosting at Portstewart. As it is now part of the Rolex Series and just two weeks before The Open Championship, there is a stellar field this year in Co. Derry. Five of the top fifteen in the world will be hoping to get their links game in shape for the big one in two weeks time!

    2017 - Week 26 Winners

    Tommy Fleetwood (ranked 8th by Golf Predictor) won the HNA Open de France on the European PGA Tour. The 26 year old Englishman continued his impressive recent form by winning his third tour title in Paris. Fleetwood finished with an impressive bogey free 66 on the 2018 Ryder Cup venue and although his lead was four shots on the back nine at one point, a strong finish by Peter Uihlein meant he won by just a single shot in the end. Our top ranked player, Alex Noren, finished in tied tenth and we had only seven of the top sixteen plus ties (7/22) on the testing layout.

    Kyle Stanley (ranked 19th by Golf Predictor) won the Quicken Loans National on the US PGA Tour. The 29 year old American won his second tour title in a play-off with Charles Howell III. After both golfers had finished level on -7, Stanley won with a par on the first extra hole. It was an emotional win for Stanley, who had to endure a five year wait for his second tour win. Our top ranked player, Rickie Fowler, finished strongly for tied 3rd and we had ten of the top twenty two plus ties (10/25) in total.  

    Monday, 26 June 2017

    2017 - Week 26 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the HNA Open de France (European PGA Tour) and the Quicken Loans National (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. There aren't many big names at Tiger Woods' tournament this week, including the man himself, who is getting help for his addiction issues. However, Rickie Fowler makes his first appearance since contending at the US Open. The French event sees the European Tour début of rookie sensation John Rahm, thanks no doubt to its updated status as a Rolex Series event and the venue being the host of the next Ryder Cup.


    2017 - Week 25 Winners

    Andres Romero (ranked 147th by Golf Predictor) won the BMW International Open on the European PGA Tour. The 36 year old Argentinian won his second tour title with a birdie burst on the back nine to edge out Sergio Garcia, Thomas Detry and Richard Bland by a single shot. Ten years after his only other victory which was also in Germany, Romero relied on a sponsor's invite after falling to 837th in the world rankings. Indeed, he is the lowest ranked golfer ever to win on Golf Predictor (147) and he did it with an impressive blemish free final round 65 (-7). On a tightly packed leaderboard, Romero posted his score and after Garcia missed a tiddler on sixteen and Bland bogeyed seventeen, both needed an eagle on the last to tie. It wasn't to be and a grateful Romero returned unexpectedly to the winner's circle. Garcia was our top ranked player and we had ten of the top twenty plus ties (10/25)

    Jordan Spieth (ranked 3rd by Golf Predictor) won the Travelers Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 23 year old American became the second youngest after Tiger Woods to register ten wins on the PGA Tour season in his first appearance at TPC River Highlands. Despite a good start, Spieth didn't play well on Sunday and was lucky not to find the water three times on the closing nine holes. He was caught by Daniel Berger, who played well on Sunday to come from five shots back to force a play-off. However, Spieth was not to be denied and he holed out spectacularly from the bunker on the first extra hole to get over the line. Our top ranked player, Rory McIlroy, finished strongly for tied 17th, despite swapping putters several times during the week! Overall, we had eleven of the top seventeen plus ties (11/25) in total.

    Monday, 19 June 2017

    2017 - Week 25 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the BMW International Open (European PGA Tour) and the Travelers Championship (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. After the excitement of the US Open, it's back to the grind! Unusually for a week after a major, there are a fair number of the top players teeing it up this week. Six of the top twenty in the world are teeing it up in Connecticut and a couple more are making the trip from Wisconsin to Germany to compete.

    2017 - Week 24 Winner

    Brookes Koepka (ranked 15th by Golf Predictor) won the US Open on the European/US PGA Tour. The 27 year old American won his first major with a tremendous display at Erin Hills. Trailing by a shot overnight, Koepka blew the field away with a display of power, accuracy and putting to win by four shots over Hideki Matsuyama and Brian Harman. In doing so, he equalled Rory McIlroy's record score to par (-16), albeit on the long par 72 in Wisconsin. Koepka opened up with two birdies on Sunday and never looked in trouble after that. A burst of birdies on the back nine all but guaranteed him the title and he duly eased to the prestigious title. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, was one of the unusually large number of top ranked players who missed the cut. As a result, we only had six of the top twenty one plus ties (6/22*) on what turned out to be an atypical US Open layout. 


    *Mickelson famously and eventually withdrew, promoting Steve Stricker to the top 22 in the GP Rankings.

    Tuesday, 13 June 2017

    2017 - Week 24 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the US Open (European/US PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. The excitement is mounting for the second major of the season on the relatively new Erin Hills layout in Wisconsin. All eyes will be on the USGA, who will be keen not to make it a hat-trick of calamities after the Chambers Bay and the DJ moving ball debacles! The long par 72 layout will feature wide fairways, fast greens and penal rough, if golfers veer too far off-line (as demonstrated by Kevin Na!). Defending champion, Dustin Johnson, will be on a high after becoming a father for the second time this week. Let's hope there are no controversial rulings for him this year!

    Sunday, 11 June 2017

    2017- Week 23 Winners

    Dylan Frittelli (ranked 9th by Golf Predictor) won the Lyoness Open powered by ORGANIC+ on the European PGA Tour. The 27 year old South African won his maiden tour title in a bunched finish in Austria. Frittelli got his nose in front on the back nine on Sunday and held his nerve to win by a single shot from David Horsey, Jbe Kruger and Mikko Lorhohen. Our top ranked player, home favourite Bernd Wiesberger, didn't quite fire, but finished in tied 15th. Overall, we had seven of the top fifteen plus ties (7/19) in total.

    Daniel Berger (ranked 6th by Golf Predictor) won the FedEx St. Jude Classic on the US PGA Tour. The 24 year old American won his second event on tour with a successful title defence in Memphis. On a strange final day where none of the third round leaders made any progress, Berger closed with a 66 (-4) for a come from behind victory. Our top ranked player, Rickie Fowler, had an uncharacteristic bad week and missed the cut. Overall, we had eight of the top eighteen plus ties (8/23).

    Saturday, 10 June 2017

    Design Update for Golf Predictor!


    Old Golf Predictor Design

    New Golf Predictor Design
    I am pleased to unveil a brand new look for Golf Predictor! This new look is now live on the site and I hope you will agree that it is a significant improvement on the existing design. Both the old and new designs are shown in the screenshots above. Gone is the now antiquated page metaphor and in comes a cleaner, more modern responsive design. Some notes on this new look:

    1. As my design skills are somewhat limited, I had to procure a new theme for the upgrade. As my budget was also somewhat limited, I used the free Corlate theme! Although this theme is a few years old, I found it appealing and I adapted it to my needs. 
    2. Unlike the debacle of the recent European Tour website upgrade, no functionality is lost or significantly changed. Indeed, most pages should look much the same within the new theme. The only change is that some menu items had to be moved (see below). Hopefully, this update will be smoother than the shambles of the European Tour one!
    3. I had to move some menu items to fit in with the new design. Many links that were in the main menu have been moved to the new bottom menu on each page (e.g. the blog/contact/links pages on the public facing site and the "My GP" Menu in the member section). The link to the search page in the member section has been moved to top right of the page and changed to a search icon.
    4. Unfortunately for me, updating the design was a much bigger job than simply changing the template. Although the content part of each page looks similar to before, almost all the CSS had to be rewritten and tested on various browsers and devices. The good news for me is that the site CSS is now much cleaner and the site will be much easier to update in the future.
    5. I have tested the new design on Windows on FireFox, Chrome, Edge and IE11, in addition to iOS Safari/Chrome (iPhone/iPad) and Android Chrome (phone and tablet). There are some minor issues with mobile devices and with iOS in particular (see below).
    6. The main problems with iOS are the pop-up charts and Features images hover text on home page. The latter doesn't work and the former is only an issue on iPhones (iPads are fine), mainly in portrait mode. Rotating the iPhone and using the extreme left or right to scroll up and down is an acceptable workaround for the iPhone 6 and above. However, viewing the pop-up charts on smaller/older iPhones may still present problems. 
    7. Chrome on iOS appears to have less of the minor display issues than Safari.
    8. I have been able to fix several minor bugs in the system which I found while testing the new design.
    9. Because this new look offers the ability to display much more text in an attractive manner, I have removed the text pop-ups from public pages and incorporated the text into the main body of the page. This also helps with page loading times, as fewer JavaScript files are loaded in the background.
    10. I have removed the breadcrumb from the top left of the content area, as it is not necessary, being beside the page title!
    11. Some compromises had to made to keep the site loading times to a minimum. For example, the home page images are the lowest acceptable quality and I threw out the fancy viewer for the Features images to save loading two more JavaScript files for a marginally better experience than the built in browser one.
    12. Similar to the tweaks outlined here, I consolidated and minimised the JavaScript and CSS files to minimise loading time for the new home page (and the other public facing pages). The new design has many more images than the old home design, but as stated above, I have saved them in the lowest quality possible without sacrificing quality.
    13. In case you're wondering, the three slider images on the new home page are from photos I took myself! The first is from the Oceânico Victoria Golf Course in Vilamoura (Portugal Masters), the second is from Carne (my home course in County Mayo, Ireland) and the final one is the eighteenth green in Fota Island in Cork (Irish Open).
    14. You will have to refresh/reload any page you recently viewed on the site to see the updated version.
    15. Every web page on the site should have been updated and tested. If you spot any overlooked pages or other errors, please contact me via the support link below.

    A lot of work has gone in to this new Golf Predictor design and I really hope you like it. As usual, any feedback is welcome, via the Contact GP page or commenting on this post. Just another way to make Golf Predictor even better!

    Friday, 9 June 2017

    Site Upgrade Tomorrow - Access Disabled

    To facilitate the implementation of a brand new design, logging in to and registering for Golf Predictor will be temporarily disabled tomorrow morning, Saturday, 10th June at approximately 9am Irish time (4am EST). Unlike the recent debacle with the European Tour website update, this update is a facelift rather than a whole new site! All the existing functionality in the member section will work as before, but just look a little nicer! Except for a few menu items, all functionality will be accessible from the same locations as before. The public facing section of the site will get the biggest overhaul, with a much more attractive façade, with nicer effects and graphics.

    All going well, the process should not take more than a couple of hours, so I would ask for your patience during this time. If you are already logged in to the site, please log out or do not use it until I have completed the process, as you may experience errors or other inconsistencies. I will tweet and post on this blog when the new look Golf Predictor is ready. I hope you will like it - a lot of hard work has gone into updating the entire site!

    Monday, 5 June 2017

    2017- Week 23 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Lyoness Open powered by ORGANIC+ (European PGA Tour) and the FedEx St. Jude Classic (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. Although it's the last chance for a tune up before the US Open, there aren't many of the top golfers playing this week. Rickie Fowler areAdam Scott are probably the biggest stars teeing it up in Memphis, while former winners Chris Wood and Bernd Wiesberger are the only members of the world's top sixty playing in Austria.

    2017 - Week 22 Winners

    Renato Paratore (ranked 85th by Golf Predictor) won the Nordea Masters on the European PGA Tour. The 20 year old Italian captured his first tour title with a gutsy one shot victory in Sweden. Paratore took the lead on the back nine and finished with three gutsy pars to edge defending champion Matthew Fitzpatrick and third round leader Chris Wood. The latter had a chance to win or make a play-off, but a wild drive on the last into the woods put an end to his chances. Our top ranked player, Alex Noren, finished in tied 15th and we had nine of the top fifteen plus ties (9/20)

    Jason Dufner (ranked 19th by Golf Predictor) won the Memorial Tournament pres. by Nationwide on the US PGA Tour. The 40 year old American recovered from a poor moving day to take his fifth tour title. After opening up with a tournament record thirty six hole total (130), Dufner squandered his five shot halfway lead with a third round 77 to fall four behind. However, despite a suspect putting stroke on the front nine on Sunday, Dufner steadied the ship and finished with a great par save in front of host Jack Nicklaus to win by three shots. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, surprisingly missed the cut and we had seven of the top eighteen plus ties (7/21) in this event.

    Monday, 29 May 2017

    2017 - Week 22 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Nordea Masters (European PGA Tour) and the Memorial Tournament pres. by Nationwide (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. As usual, there's a strong field for Jack's tournament, with half of the world's top twenty teeing it up in Ohio. Meanwhile, the field in Sweden is obviously nowhere near as strong, with local favourites Henrik Stenson and Alex Noren the marquee names in the event.

    Sunday, 28 May 2017

    2017 - Week 21 Winners

    Alex Noren (ranked 3rd by Golf Predictor) won the BMW PGA Championship on the European PGA Tour. The 34 year old Swede won his ninth tour title with a spectacular final round at Wentworth. Noren finished with a fantastic eagle on the last hole to shoot a course record 62 (-10) and set a respectable clubhouse target. He then had to endure a two hour wait as all his rivals fell away one by one in the rain, as if intimidated by his performance. Our top ranked player, Henrik Stenson, stalled somewhat on the back nine Sunday, but still finished tied third. Overall, we had eight of the top fourteen plus ties (8/20) on the testing and redesigned Wentworth layout. 

    Kevin Kisner ranked 15th by Golf Predictor) won the DEAN & DELUCA Invitational on the US PGA Tour. The 33 year old American won his second tour title by a single shot from a trio of golfers, including Spanish Sensation Jon Rahm and defending champion Jordan Spieth. Kisner went two clear down the stretch with a run of four birdies in six holes after the turn. However, a bogey on sixteen cut his lead to the minimum and he had to sweat a twelve foot birdie attempt on the last for Rahm and a bunker shot from Web Simpson before taking the title. Our top ranked player, Sergio Garcia, had a poor weekend and finished in tied 12th. Overall, we had only seven of the top eighteen plus ties (7/23).

    Monday, 22 May 2017

    2017 - Week 21 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the BMW PGA Championship (European PGA Tour) and the DEAN & DELUCA Invitational (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. It's the flagship event on the European Tour this week and even though there is no Rory McIlroy, many of the European stars are teeing it up on the redesigned Wentworth layout. However, a couple of big name European stars, Masters champion Sergio Garcia and rookie sensation Jon Rahm, are among the biggest names in the field in Texas, where they'll have to battle home favourite and defending champion Jordan Spieth for the title.

    2017 - Week 20 Winners

    Alvaro Quiros (ranked 13th by Golf Predictor) won The Rocco Forte Open - Verdura on the European PGA Tour. The 34 year old Spaniard won his seventh tour title with a closing day performance in Sicily. Despite being seven shots clear after six holes on Sunday, Quiros leaked shots on back nine in the windy conditions and needed a play-off to defeat Zander Lombard. It was a welcome return to the winner's circle after six years for the Spaniard, who has struggled with his game. Our top ranked player, Jordan Smith, finished in tied 48th and we had only four of the top eighteen plus ties (4/22) in the weak fielded event in difficult conditions.

    Billy Horschel (ranked 66th by Golf Predictor) won the AT&T Byron Nelson on the US PGA Tour. The 30 year old American won his fourth tour title in a play-off with Jason Day. Horschel overcame poor recent form to take his fist title in almost three years in a close battle with Day and James Hahn. However, after Hahn finished one shot short, Horschel won when Day surprisingly missed a four foot par putt at the first extra hole. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, finished in tied 13th and we had eleven of the top twenty plus ties (11/26) in total.

    Monday, 15 May 2017

    2017 - Week 20 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, The Rocco Forte Open - Verdura (European PGA Tour) and the AT&T Byron Nelson (US PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. There are several big names teeing it up in Texas this week, where world number one Dustin Johnson and Masters champion Sergio Garcia join local hero Jordan Spieth at the Byron Nelson. As to be expected, the field in Sicily is not as impressive, but it does have young Jordan Smith headlining the event.

    2017 - Week 19 Winners

    Matt Wallace (ranked 12th by Golf Predictor) won the Open de Portugal at Morgado Golf Resort on the European PGA Tour. The the 27 year old Englishman won his maiden tour title with an impressive wire to wire victory at the resurrected event. After opening with a 63 (-10), Wallace closed out his win with his third blemish free round of the week. Despite that, he didn't have it all his own way and after a slow start Sunday, he was almost caught by a fast finishing Julian Suri. However, Wallace was able to raise his game and close out a three shot win. Our top ranked player, Ricardo Melo Gouveia, disappointed the home fans by missing the cut and we had nine of the top twenty two plus ties (9/25) in the weak fielded event on a new course in winy conditions.

    Si-Woo Kim (ranked 63rd by Golf Predictor) won The Players Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 21 year old South Korean rank outsider won his second tour title with an impressive final day performance at Sawgrass. After hitting the lead on the front nine, the young Korean showed great composure and a brilliant touch around the greens. That allowed him to keep the high quality field at bay and become the youngest ever winner of this prestigious event by a three shot margin. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, finished strongly for tied 12th. Overall, we only had five of the top sixteen plus ties (5/21) in an event where many of the bigger names floundered on the tough layout.

    Monday, 8 May 2017

    2017 - Week 19 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, The Players Championship (US PGA Tour) and the Open de Portugal at Morgado Golf Resort (European PGA Tour) are now available on Golf Predictor. As usual, there's a very strong field for the so called "fifth major" in Florida, with forty eight of the top fifty in the world rankings teeing it up at a redesigned Sawgrass. That doesn't leave much top talent for the European Tour, which heads back to Portugal for the return to the schedule of the Portuguese Open. In the event co-sanctioned with the Challenge Tour, only one golfer is inside the top one hundred and fifty in the world rankings.

    Sunday, 7 May 2017

    2017 - Week 18 Winner

    Brian Harman (ranked 36th by Golf Predictor) won the Wells Fargo Championship on the US PGA Tour. The 30 year old American captured his second tour title with a dramatic putt on the par five final hole. After half duffing his pitch to the green, Harman rolled in an unlikely thirty foot downhill putt to pip the condensed field. Our top ranked player, Dustin Johnson, finished strongly for tied second in his comeback from that famous slip and narrowly failed to win four events in a row. Overall, we had eight of the top eighteen plus ties (8/23) in total on the impressive, but tough, Eagle Point layout.
    There was no individual stroke play event on the European PGA Tour this week.   

    Tuesday, 2 May 2017

    2017 - Week 17 Winner

    Alexander Levy (ranked 6th by Golf Predictor) won the Volvo China Open on the European PGA Tour. The 26 year old China specialist won this title for the second time after catching third round leader Daniel Frittelli in Beijing. The South African will be disappointed not to build on his three shot overnight lead, but a closing 74 allowed Levy to make up seven shots and force a play-off. The Frenchman went on to win with a birdie on the first extra hole. Our top ranked player, Bernd Wiesberger, finished in tied 4th, and we had eight of the top eighteen plus ties (8/23).
     
    The Zurich Classic of New Orleans on the US PGA Tour was not covered this year due to its transition to a team event. Unfortunately, this makes it unsuitable for Golf Predictor.


    Monday, 1 May 2017

    2017 - Week 18 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions for this week, the Wells Fargo Championship (US PGA Tour)  are now available on Golf Predictor. The event moves to a different course this year as Quail Hollow will host the US PGA Championship in August. That makes the event harder to call, as does the somewhat weaker field than normal. However, there are still six of the top twenty in the world teeing it up in North Carolina, led by world number one, Dustin Johnson. 

    There is no individual stroke play event on the European PGA Tour this week.    

    Monday, 24 April 2017

    2017 - Week 17 Predictions/Statistics Online

    The predictions and statistics for this week, the Volvo China Open (European PGA Tour), are now available on Golf Predictor. No big names are teeing it up in China this week and the tournament has only one year of course history. Neither of these facts make it very easy to call, but Bernd Wiesberger will be hoping to complete a Chinese double in Beijing. The Zurich Classic of New Orleans (US PGA Tour) will not covered this year due to its transition to a team event. Unfortunately, this makes it incompatible with Golf Predictor.

    Sunday, 23 April 2017

    2017 - Week 16 Winners

    Bernd Wiesberger (ranked 3rd by Golf Predictor) won the Shenzhen International on the European PGA Tour. The 31 year old Austrian won his fourth tour title with a play-off victory over the fast finishing Tommy Fleetwood. Despite having a three shot lead overnight, Wiesberger needed a gritty finish to match Fleetwood in the clubhouse, after the Englishman had closed with an excellent 63 (-9). Wiesberger almost went into the water both times on eighteen, but a fantastic second shot at the first extra hole set up a winning birdie. Despite a great start, our top ranked player, Bubba Watson, faded over the weekend and finished tied 26th. Overall, we had twelve of the top twenty one plus ties (12/24*) in the weather affected event, which finished on Monday.

    Kevin Chappell (ranked 11th by Golf Predictor) won the Valero Texas Open on the US PGA Tour. The 30 year old American finally won his first tour title at the 180th time of asking in San Antonio. Chappell was put under pressure by the fast finishing Brooks Koepka and needed a birdie on the last hole to record a one shot victory. Our top ranked player, Matt Kuchar, finished in tied 40th and we had seven of the top eighteen plus ties (7/21) in an event partially played in difficult conditions.


    *Dubuisson withdrew, promoting Bourdy into the top twenty four of the GP Rankings.

    Monday, 17 April 2017

    2017 - 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 five of the top twenty five in the world teeing it up in Texas. 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, 16 April 2017

    2017 - Week 15 Winners

    Edoardo Molinari (ranked 80th by Golf Predictor) won the Trophee Hassan II on the European PGA Tour. The 36 year old Italian won his first tour title in almost seven years, defeating Paul Dunne in a play-off. Molinari had an impressive birdie-eagle finish to overtake long time leader Dunne, but the Irishman rallied to birdie the last and tie the Italian. After a poor drive on the first extra hole, Dunne was in trouble, but still missed a six foot putt to extend the play-off. Our top ranked player, defending champion Jeung-Hun Wang, was fighting his game this year and missed the cut. Overall, we had only seven of the top nineteen plus ties (7/26) on the testing layout.

    Wesley Bryan (ranked 40th by Golf Predictor) won the RBC Heritage on the US PGA Tour. The 27 year old American completed his amazing journey from trick shot specialist on the mini tours to PGA Tour winner in just a few short years with an assured final day performance. On a bunched leaderboard, Bryan broke away on the back nine and became the first South Carolina native to win at Harbour Town, beating course specialist Luke Donald into yet another runner-up finish. Our top ranked player, Matt Kuchar, finished strongly for tied 11th and we had seven of the top eleven plus ties (7/21) in total.