It makes sense that No. 1 player and defending champion Dustin Johnson would be the favorite at the World Golf Championship Mexico event, but the longshots might be a better bet.
The WGC-Mexico Championship begins Thursday, and the sportsbools are making it seem like an outing filled with longshots who carry a big upset potential in their bag. The course in Chapultetec, Mexico, is at 7,870 feet above sea level, meaning shots will carry farther than usual, and it could take a little work for golfers to acclimate to the added length they’ll experience.
Johnson is a 6/1 selection to win at Club de Golf Chapultepec, west of the Mexico City. Justin Thomas, who captured the Honda Classic last week is next at 7/1.
Winning last year by a stroke, Johnson could easily defend his title. He has played well the last two months with a first-place finish at the Tournament of Champions and a tie for second at the Pebble Beach Pro-Am.
In addition to Thomas’ victory at Honda, he tied for ninth the week before at the Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club. He also tied for fifth at this event in 2017.
Longshots Could Pay Off
There is a big drop off after those two players. The next golfer is Jon Rahm and Jordan Spieth at 12/1. Both of them warrant consideration.
Rahm won the opening event of the West Coast Swing in January, capturing the Career Builder Challenge. He was second at the Tournament of Champions to Johnson. He also tied for third at WGC Mexico last year.
Spieth finished tied for ninth in the last event he entered, the Genesis Open. He tied for 12th in last year’s tournament.
The most attractive long shot could be Tommy Fleetwood at 16/1. He finished second here in 2017, missing out on a playoff with Johnson by a stroke. He has also had some positive results this year. He defended his title at Abu Dhabi in January and finished fourth last week at Honda.
“My game is getting better all the time,” Fleetwood said to reporters on Tuesday. “I feel like I’m always doing the right things. My confidence is up. You still have to play well no matter how confident you are. You still have to put the ball in the right places and put the ball in the hole.”
Going Deeper Down Board
Another 16/1 pick that might pay off is Rickie Fowler. The 29-year-old has been up and down so far this year. He finished tied for fourth at the Tournament of Champions and then missed the cut at the Farmers. His next event he tied for 11th. Last week he missed the cut. He might be ready to go low again this week.
A real daring pick might be Thomas Pieters. He is at 40/1, but may be worth a look. He finished tied for fifth against a strong field at Abu Dhabi and tied for 11th at another European Tour event. He tied for 13th at the Honda Classic. He was tied for fifth in Mexico last year.