BMW Championship a poor event for longshots
Challenge Tour players could hold an advantage
As highlighted in the preview, the BMW Championship has been a poor event for outsiders and the 2018 winner, Keegan Bradley, is the only triple-figure priced winner in the last 15 years.
I did have a good look at all the longshots in the 50 strong field and I was mildly tempted to play Harris English, who really likes a tough test, but he's not quite playing well enough at present so I'm happy to swerve the event altogether.
I'm especially happy to give it a wide birth given the DP World Tour event looks nicely primed for a longshot winner...
There have been three DP World Tour events staged at the venue - Galgorm Castle - in the last three years.
The 2020 edition of the Irish Open and the first two editions of this event - the ISPS Handa World Invitational - and the three winners have gone off at 65.064/1, 140.0139/1 and 27.026/1, so it hasn't been an outstanding venue for outsiders. However, we could very easily get another triple-figure priced winner this time around.
There has been no DP World Tour action since the Open Championship and many in this week's line up didn't qualify for that event anyway so that may hand the advantage to the many Challenge Tour players in the field this week.
DP World Tour players that didn't play in the Open and that didn't journey to the States to play in the co-sanctioned events held while the Scottish Open and Open Championships were being staged are going to be lining up on Thursday having not played competitive golf in over a month.
The Challenge Tour players have had an event to compete in every week since May. I'm happy to take a chance on two of them and first up is England's Tom Lewis.
As highlighted in the preview, the ISPS Handa World Invitational is staged over two courses.
The field will play Galgorm Castle and the Mussenden Course at Castlerock Golf Club over the first two days before the tournament is decided over the weekend at Galgorm.
This is the first time that Castlerock has been used for the event and that's going to be a big plus for anyone that plays links golf well given it's a traditional links layout.
Lewis, who won the Boys Amateur Championship at Royal St Georges' in 2009 and the St Andrews Links Trophy in 2011, famously tied for the lead on his Open Championship debut after round one, having played alongside Tom Watson, so we know he loves links golf.
Lewis played in the Northern Irish Open at Galgorm in 2016 (his only previous appearance here) and he finished ninth and on the only other occasions he's played in Northern Ireland, he finished 11th behind Shane Lowry in the Open at Royal Portrush so he should have very positive vibes this week.
A two-time DP World Tour winner and a winner on the Korn Ferry Tour, Lewis is a very good player on his day and it's only two years since he was contending strongly in a World Golf Championship event at last week's FedEx Cup Championship venue - TPC Southwind.
I wouldn't describe him as being in tip-top form, but he's been on the go on the Challenge Tour since he missed the cut at the British Masters at the start of July, producing form figures that read 47-19-18-34-12 so he's going to be sharp and raring to go.
Place order to lay 8u @ 10.0 & 12u @ 2.0
Like Lewis, Jonathan Caldwell has been on the go on the Challenge Tour, and he's been faring slightly better than the Englishman.
Since missing the cut at the German Challenge, a week after the Open Championship, Caldwell has finished ninth, 17th and third last week in the Scottish Challenge and he has plent of experience at Galgorm.
Cadwell, who's from County Down, has form figures at Galgorm stretching back ten years reading 9-12-36-13-54-MC and I'd be very surprised if he wasn't familiar with the Mussenden at Castlerock too.
Like Lewis, Caldwell is superb links exponent and his sole success on the DP World Tour - the Scandinavian Mixed in 2021 - was at the links-style layout at Vallda Golf & Country Club in Sweden.
In form and playing at home, Caldwell looks primed to cause a bit of a surprise.
Place order to lay 8u @ 10.0 & 12u @ 2.0
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