OHL Classic at Mayakoba – Fantasy Golfanac

Course Details

El Camaleon Golf Club in Playa del Carmen, Mexico
6,987 yards – Par 71 – Seashore Paspalum Greens
Course Architect: Greg Norman

Green Sizes: 7,000 square feet… Larger-than-Average Greens
Strength of Field Rating: < 100 OWGR ...Weak Field Strength Fairways Hit (Field Average): ~63% … Average Fairways to Hit
Greens in Regulation (Field Average): ~67% … Easier-than-Average Greens to Hit

Tournament Angles

#1 Short Courses
#2 Seashore Paspalum
#3 Weak Field Events
#4 Easy-to-Hit Greens
#5 Easy Courses

Previous Winners

2017: Pat Perez -21 over Gary Woodland -19
2016: Graeme McDowell -18 over Jason Bohn, Russell Knox in a playoff
2015: Charley Hoffman -17 over Shawn Stefani -16
2014: Harris English -21 over Brian Stuard -17
2012: John Huh -13 over Robert Allenby in a playoff
2011: Johnson Wagner -17 over Spencer Levin in a playoff
2010: Cameron Beckman -15 over Brian Stuard, Joe Durant -13

54-Hole Leaders

2017: Gary Woodland -18
2016: Derek Fathauer -16
2015: Jason Bohn -15
2014: Robert Karlsson -16
2012: Daniel Summerhays -12
2011: Johnson Wagner -13
2010: Joe Durant -14

36-Hole Leaders

2017: Gary Woodland -13
2016: Graeme McDowell -12
2015: Michael Putnam -12
2014: Harris English, Robert Karlsson, Kevin Stadler -12
2012: Daniel Summerhays, Will Claxton, Greg Owen -8
2011: Chris Stroud -11
2010: Joe Durant -12

Important Interview Quotes

Q. This is a course that absolutely suits your game well. Do you enjoy being here in this environment, the whole aspect of it?
I do. I consider my driver one of my best assets of my game and you’ve got to drive it straight out here. But if you do drive it straight out here, you have number of wedges and a number of other clubs you can attack with. That’s what I was able to really do. I only had one bad drive really today that got me out of position. If you can do that out here, you’re going to have a lot of looks at birdie, which I did this week. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. I feel like you really have a game plan out there. You’ve been very disciplined in course management. You haven’t used the driver very often, that 2-iron has been a really good club for you. I imagine it’ll be the same strategy in the final round?
Yeah, I don’t see any reason to change. I’m very comfortable with where my golf swing is and I’m going to rely on it and run it out. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. How does this golf course suit your game? It’s tight, you don’t have to be very long.
Yeah, I think it just fits my game really well. I don’t hit it very far, but I feel comfortable out here. You don’t have to bomb it out here, you’ve just got to place it, and once you’re in the fairway, you’ve got a good chance of making birdie. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. And then lastly, can you talk a little bit about the tee shots and how tight this golf course is?
Yeah, I mean, this is a very tight golf course. You know, after maybe 10 to 15 yards of rough on each side, it’s just jungle, right? When you get some crosswinds, you’ve got to hit solid tee shots and you’ve got to really control your ball. You really want to be able to flight your ball because you really don’t want to be curving it down on that crosswind downwind, right, because it’s going to curve so much.

It’s a very demanding course off the tee, but if you are able to get the ball in play on this golf course, with the time of year that we’re playing, the course is fairly soft so you’re going to be able to be aggressive coming into the greens. And the course is in great shape, so even this afternoon after a lot of traffic, the greens are just perfect. Yeah, but it’s a very demanding course off the tee. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. Given your preferred style, that punch-draw ball flight, perfect for this golf course? Do you feel like you really suit this place?
Yeah, I definitely grew up hitting shots and hitting a lot of punch shots. I used it quite a bit today off the tee and some second shots. Fairways are still a little soft so I’m not getting that roll with the low one so I’ve got to be careful. But it’s good, man. I had a nice day. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. What’s the biggest challenge on this golf course?
For me it’s definitely off the tee. If I get the ball in play, it seems pretty vanilla around the greens. The greens aren’t too quick so I’m able to make a bunch of birdies. But the hardest part for me is keeping my driver and my 3-wood in play on this golf course. If I do that, I’m going to shoot some more good scores. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q: Have you had a chance, I guess you did, to get out and see the course here?
Yeah, I played 18 yesterday. I like the golf course. Different grass than we usually play on with the paspalum, at least I think it’s paspalum. Interesting, different. Ball sits up perfectly in the fairways. The greens seem to roll pretty good. Yeah, it’s in great shape.

I think that it’s kind of what everyone told me. It’s not an overly long golf course but you have to drive the ball well here. If you can get the ball in play and put the ball in the fairway a lot, I think you can then get a lot of opportunities. But if you miss the fairways here, miss the corridors, it’s going to be a tough day. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q: Can you talk a little about how this course suits your game and what you like about it?
Well, technically it doesn’t suit my game. I mean, it’s really a course for shorter hitters, it’s not really long off the tee. You need to — there’s a lot of emphasis and importance on keeping the ball in play off the tee, so that means I’m not able to use my driver as much as I would like to, which is one of my main tools. But it’s not like my 3-wood goes short, so that’s what I’m going to do mostly this week like I did last year, hit more shots just to put it in the fairways instead of going for distance. I’ve got the par 5s where I can take care of my distance, but with the par 4s just being in the fairway or being in grass is number one objective for the week.

Obviously just trying to eliminate big numbers. Double bogeys happen here very fast, just a ball that goes in the hazard off a tee, out of bounds, the wind just takes it. It’s something that happens very quickly and try to avoid mistakes like that and hopefully have a pretty organized four rounds. -2016, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. Regarding the golf course, El Camaleon, what are your reactions? It’s a short course but the winds can make it a little bit tough.
Yeah, the biggest key to this golf course is hitting the fairways simply because if you don’t, you’ll probably be in a hazard or in the woods or something. I think hitting the ball in the fairway this week is so important and if you can do that, you can shoot low scores -2015, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. What is it about this place that has you so comfortable? Runner-up a year ago, off to another great start here at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.
Well, it’s reminds me of Houston where I’m from. It’s hot, humid and paspalum grainy greens. So grew up on stuff like this, used to the kind of weather and it just kind of has kind of a hometown feel to me even though we’re down in Mexico. I love it here, loved it here last year and we’ll probably come back here every year. -2015, Tee-Scripts.com

Q. What’s the key to playing this golf course?
Definitely got to be in the fairway. You know, not definitely, but you get some good lies in the rough, but you’ve got to putt well around here. The greens are kind of tricky where you have some of the pins, but you’ve got to putt well out here. -2014

Q. Fairways are playing a little narrow to looks like.
They’re narrow. There’s a lot of hazards out there, and you have to be very focused off the tee, pick a good target and hit it because you can look at all the trouble and start guiding it. -2014

Q. One of your greatest weapons is your length off the tee. I’m guessing you didn’t hit many drivers out here, though?
No, but I’m still able to use my length by hitting 3-woods and 2-irons and moving it up the fairway still where most guys would have to hit driver and things. I hit one driver today, so I definitely wasn’t able to use my driver length, but I still use my length off the tee just in different ways. -2014

Q. Are you surprised the way the golf course played today?
Yeah, I’ve never played this golf course with this little wind. Some of the shots were a little weird, starting it kind of dead center of the fairway instead of starting it left center or left edge of the rough, but that’s why you saw so many low scores today. I think the wind is supposed to pick up maybe this weekend, and this golf course should get pretty fun. -2014

Q. Did you hit many drivers off the tee, because this golf course is playing a little faster, you’re getting some run-out?
I think I hit maybe two drivers all day. It’s just kind of one of those courses where you’ve got to hit the fairway. Super tight off the tee, so just put it in play and you’ve got some birdie opportunities. -2014

Q. 17 out of 18 greens for Shawn Stefani on Friday. You seemed really comfortable out there. How did you get into a good rhythm?
You know, I’ve been hitting the ball really well for quite some time now. The last few days really has been credit to my putter. I kind of figured something out on Wednesday and just kind of focused on that. I’ve kind of come from slow, kind of grainy Bermuda greens, which these are Paspalum, but I’ve kind of grew up on this. I felt really comfortable on the greens and therefore I made a lot of putts. That’s kind of what’s put me where I am today. -2014

Q. You finished tied for third here last year. You’re in a similar spot halfway through. What is it about this layout that has you so comfortable?
I think what I like about this layout, obviously length is always an advantage. But here it’s about positioning yourself in the middle of the fairway or right side of the fairway or trying to attack some of these flags. That’s one of my strengths is just getting the ball in play. If I can get my putter hot, we’ll see what happens. -2014

Q. What was going good today?
You know, I kept it in the fairway quite a bit. Just not much going on out there. In the fairway, on the greens, which was pretty good considering the wind was going pretty good.
Had a little bit of side winds. Made a few key par saves. All in all, pretty good. -2013

Q. Conditions out there, what was the course like?
Very soft. I mean, I remember playing here in the years past hitting three, four drivers, and now about every hole is a driver because the ball is just hitting and stopping.
But, I mean, fairways are good, not much rough. Kind of get a good lie in the rough when you hit it there. Greens are good as well. -2013

Quotes found at ASAPsports.com unless otherwise noted.