Previews and pre-event analysis from Golf Betting System's PGA Tour and European Tour coverage
To read Steve Bamford's Quicken Loans National Tips for 2014 click here. Follow Steve on twitter: @bamfordgolf
The PGA Tour makes it's annual visit to the United States capital when the Quicken Loans National takes place at Congressional Country Club. This tournament is organised by the Tiger Woods Foundation and is held in honour of the United States Military. The tournament is now an established part of the Tour schedule; it's been established since 2007, with a prolific group of winners including Woods who has captured the title in 2009 and 2012. Read Steve Bamford's Quicken Loans National tips for 2014 click here.
Tournament Facts & Scheduling
The Quicken Loans (formerly AT&T) National always attracts a high quality field as it's the fifth (and final) invitational status tournament. The very best courses tend to attract the best players and there aren't many better old style classical courses than Congressional Country Club, which hosted the U.S. Open in 2011. Whilst Anthony Kim, Justin Rose and Tiger himself have used this tournament to catapult themselves into the Ryder Cup; the timing of the tournament is also key for players further down the food chain as they can qualify for The Open. 2014 sees the start of the Open Qualifying Series, where 4 players, who have not already qualified and who finish in the top 12 at Congressional, will secure places in The Open Championship.
Quicken Loans National Course Details
Blue Course, Congressional Country Club, Bethseda, Maryland. Designer: Designer: Devereux Emmet 1924, with Rees Jones renovation 2009; Course Type: Classical Technical Par: 71 Length: 7,569 yards Bunkers: 99 Fairways: Bentgrass Rough: Fescue Greens: 5,600 sq.ft average featuring Bentgrass Stimpmeter: 13ft Scoring Avg 2012: 73.05 Ranked 3 of 49 courses for difficulty on the 2012 PGA Tour 2013: 72.12 Ranked 8 of 43 courses in 2013 for difficulty.
Previous Champions: 2013: Bill Haas; 2012: Tiger Woods; 2011: Nick Watney; 2010: Justin Rose; 2009: Tiger Woods; 2008: Anthony Kim. 2013: -12/272; 2012: -8/276
Winners Prices: 2013: Haas - 40/1 2012: Woods - 11/2 2011: Watney - 14/1 2010: Rose - 30/1 2009: Woods - 2/1
Pre-Tournament Key Summary
It's worth remembering that this tournament has been played at different venues over the years. Tiger Woods has always wanted the tournament to be played in the Washington D.C. so Congressional has hosted the tournament between 2007-2009 and then from 2012 onwards. Trent Jones inspired renovation work for the 2011 U.S. Open meant that the tournament moved to Aronimink for the 2010 and 2011 renewals; and next year sees the tournament move to Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Gainesville, Virginia. That course hosted the 2005 President's Cup.
This tournament tends to deliver a quality winner; all of whom can hit the ball a long way. The Blue Course at Congressional is a beast of a Par 71, so look for players who can hit plenty of greens in regulation and who have a track record on classical golf courses. Long irons are extremely important here as 7 Par 4s measure over 460 yards, with the signature 18th measuring 523 yards. The 6th hole is the shortest Par 5 at 555 yards and 2 of the course's Par 3s measure 218 and 233 yards respectively.
It's also likely that non Open Championship qualifiers will feature now with the establishment of the new Open Qualifying Series.
Below we track the results of Golf Betting System PGA Tour tipster Steve Bamford who has been producing weekly tips since 2009. You can also follow him on Twitter @bamfordgolf.