The PGA Tour's Florida Swing continues and Dave Tindall has three each-way selections for the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill with eight places paid on the Betfair Sportsbook...
"He's played it seven times, never finished outside the top 35, ranked in the top 10 on four occasions and scaled the very top of the mountain with a superb victory on his last appearance in 2019 when closing with a 64."
Main Bet: Francesco Molinari each-way @ 29.028/1
Francesco Molinari's return to form on the PGA Tour over the last few months has been a welcome storyline.
After rather vanishing in 2020, he's started 2021 with a pair of top 10s on the West Coast Swing with T8 at The American Express and T10 at the Farmers Insurance Open.
There was an extra string of logic to that as the Italian now lives in California.
Then came an interesting test at Riviera. He'd struggled badly at the L.A. course previously with four cuts and a T52 in his previous four appearances. So could being a member there change the script?
It certainly did. Molinari fired a closing 67 to finish tied eighth - a sign that his extra knowledge helped but also a vindication of his impressive current form.
Now he carries that revived current form to a venue, Bay Hill, where he's had a string of excellent results.
He's played it seven times, never finished outside the top 35, ranked in the top 10 on four occasions and scaled the very top of the mountain with a superb victory on his last appearance in 2019 when closing with a 64.
One interesting stat at Bay Hill is that the champions excel on the demanding set of Par 3s. Molinari was third in that category when he won in 2019 and each of the last seven winners were in the top six.
A check of the current Par 3 Scoring Average stats shows Molinari in tied fifth (2.94) so that's a reassuring statistical tick.
Molinari was asked about why he likes Bay Hill so much. He said last year: "I can't really point one single thing. I think if you ask a lot of the guys out there they are going to tell you that it's more of a bomber's course, but I seem to like it pretty much from the first time I came.
"I don't know, maybe part of it has to do with the fact that I was watching it on TV when I was growing up and obviously, like I said many times, in Italy the exposure to golf was limited and Mr. Palmer and Mr. Nicklaus were two obviously of the few figures that reached all the way out to Italy and they were really mythological figures.
"So to come here and to play in Arnie's tournament has always been special to me and it's always been a week that I've enjoyed a lot and I obviously still do."
No amazing insights there but it's a big week for him and he approached it in great spirits thanks to those three top 10s in his last four tournaments.
This has always been a good event for repeat winners so Molinari looks a backable each-way price at 28/1.
Next Best: Kevin Na each-way @ 51.050/1
Kevin Na continues to be underrated and, once more, he has lots in his favour for a 50/1 shot.
Let's start with some course form. Na was 11th in 2009, runner-up in 2010, fourth in 2012 and sixth in 2015.
He's not been as strong since but Na comes back into the crosshairs thanks to a strong finish in last week's WGC-Workday Championship.
The Korean-born American started slowly at The Concession but then fired 69-69-67 over the final 54 holes to climb up to tied 11th.
Na's short game was on point as he ranked third for SG: Around The Green and 17th in SG: Putting. He also split over 85% of the fairways.
When he took victory in the Sony Open a couple of months ago, that was Na's fifth PGA Tour victory. He'd been stuck on one for seemingly forever but now has a win in each of the last four seasons. That puts him in elite company.
Also a contender in Saudi after opening rounds of 69-63 before a couple of back-nine slips on the weekend left him T21, Na is doing plenty of good things right now.
Na was also tied 13th in November's Masters so based on how he's playing and his solid bank of course form, there's easily enough there to get involved at 50/1.
The other in the mid-range price bracket I like is Marc Leishman at 40s.
Once more, course form is a big reason as he has a win, a second and a seventh at Bay Hill in the last four years.
At the top end, preference would be for last year's winner Tyrrell Hatton.
The Englishman has shown he can defend a title when winning back-to-back editions of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship and just doesn't deserve to be twice the price of Rory McIlroy.
Final Bet: Luke List each-way @ 101.0100/1
As an outsider, the one that appeals most at a three-figure price is Luke List.
The American has played the API on three occasions and performed strongly each time.
He was T17 on debut in 2017, landed some each-way cash when T7 in 2018 and added T10 on his latest appearance in 2019.
List has ranked ninth (2019) and third (2018) respectively in both SG: Approach and SG: Tee To Green in his last two visits so he definitely likes what he sees at Bay Hill.
The 36-year-old has yet to win on the PGA Tour but Florida has always seemed the most likely place for him to make the big breakthrough.
He lost a play-off to an inspired Justin Thomas at the 2018 Honda Classic and List's last start in the Sunshine State saw him win the second tier's Korn Ferry Challenge in August 2020.
That play-off was contested after both had shot 8-under while he won the Korn Ferry event with 12-under so the former US Amateur runner-up has shown he can thrive on tough tracks in Florida.
As for current form, he narrowly missed the cut at Riviera but before there was a T30 in Phoenix, T10 at the Farmers Insurance Open and T21 at The American Express.
Putting has been his problem but he's recorded positive figures in his last two events so that's an encouraging. Take him at 100/1.
Dave's 2020/2021 P/L
2019/2020 P/L: +£13.83
2018/2019 P/L: -£338.25
2017/2018 P/L: +£362.84
2016/2017 P/L: +£1179.89