Honda LPGA Thailand 2024 Tips: Brooke Henderson leads Jamie’s E/W Picks

 | February 21 | 

15 mins read

jamie LPGA

It is a full week for our Golf Tipster Jamie Worsley and his final full preview comes from the LGPA Tour where he takes a look at the Honda LPGA Thailand for us at Betfred Insights.

He has picked out five women for each-way betting consideration, so check out his Predictions and Picks along with all his reasoning below...

Honda LPGA Thailand 2024 Betting Tips:

  • Brooke Henderson 14/1 – 1/4 5 places – 3 pts ew
  • Haeran Ryu 28/1 – 1/4 5 places – 1.75 pts ew
  • Maja Stark 60/1 – 1/4 5 places – 1 pt ew
  • Nanna Koerstz Madsen 150/1 – 1/4 5 places – 0.75 pts ew
  • Eila Galitsky 200/1 – 1/4 5 places – 0.5 pts ew

Following a four-week break after the LPGA’s season-opening double-header in Florida, the tour returns to action this week. With the Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club’s Old Course beginning a three-week stint in East Asia.

TOURNAMENT HISTORY

The Honda LPGA Thailand was the first LPGA event to be staged in Thailand when it debuted on tour in 2006. Amata Springs Country Club hosted that first renewal, though barring 2009, every other edition has been held here, at Siam Country Club’s Old Course.

It boasts a very impressive list of winners, with eight major champions lifting the trophy. However it’s the major-less Amy Yang who has collected the most titles, with three victories coming in 2015, 2017 and 2019.

Five-time major winner, Yani Tseng is the only other player to record multiple wins, winning the event in back-to-back years in 2011/2012.

Last five winners:

  • 2023 – Winner: Lilia Vu (-22); runner-up: Natthakritta Vongtaveelap (-21)
  • 2022 – Winner: Nanna Koerstz Madsen (-26, playoff); runner-up: Xiyu Lin (-26)
  • 2021 – Winner: Ariya Jutanugarn (-22); runner-up: Atthaya Thitikul (-21)
  • 2019 – Winner: Amy Yang (-22); runner-up: Minjee Lee (-21)
  • 2018 – Winner: Jessica Korda (-25); runners-up: Lexi Thompson, Moriya Jutanugarn (-21)

Lilia Vu won the event in 2023 to start an incredible twelve months, in which she would go on to win a further three times, two of them majors and finish the year as the world #1. She is back to defend her title this week.

THE COURSE

Siam Country Club’s Old Course was originally built in the 70s by Japanese architect Isao Mazumi. However it was extensively renovated by the Curley/Schmidt design team in 2007, with the culling of numerous trees acting as the most significant change as they looked to open up the playing corridors.

This attractive, tree-lined venue is 6576 yards long and plays as a par 72. It possesses 10x par 4s (320-422 yards), 4x par 5s (482-543 yards) and 4x par 3s (153-184 yards).

Whilst tree-lined it is still spacious; with the fairways around average in width and a lack of troublesome rough, it is left to the strong strategic bunkering to provide the defence off-the-tee.

Paspaslum covers most of the course, except the speedy greens, which use bermudagrass. There is plenty of variety on show across these often raised putting surfaces; some small and some big, whilst

they can be made to feel smaller, with the irregularly-shaped greens enabling them to tuck some pin positions. As with the fairways, it is left to the abundant bunkering to give them some protection.

That being said, this is a very straightforward course. It is predominantly flat and despite there being several lakes dotted around the property it is used sparingly as a danger, only really coming into play on a couple of holes and players have been allowed to be aggressive in their approach to this event.

This has certainly been evident in the seven most recent renewals here, with each of those being won with a score in the -20s; Nanna Madsen setting a -26 tournament scoring record when winning that 2022 edition.

The length of the holes certainly plays a part in this low scoring, with all par 5s reachable and lacking risk, whilst eight of the ten par 4s come in at under 400 yards. It simply requires conditions to play a part to make scoring remotely difficult.

THE WEATHER

The typically warm, sunny and humid conditions in Thailand means a small chance of thunderstorms over the weekend. There is some breezy weather forecast throughout the week too, with constant winds of around 12mph and gusts up to 20mph enough to make things a little more interesting.

THE STATS

Key stats:

  • § SG: Off-the-Tee/Driving Distance
  • § SG: Approach
  • § Greens-in-Regulation
  • § SG: Putting (Bermudagrass)
  • § Par 5 Scoring

The course tempts players to hit driver at almost every turn and with that, it’s not a surprise to see big-hitters excel at Siam CC.

Last year’s winner, Lilia Vu was a top-40 driver on tour last year and she produced some of that quality in this event when winning, ranking 27th OTT and top 20 in driving distance. The need for powerful driving was more evident from her nearest challengers, with Natthakritta Vongtaveelap in 2nd ranking 5th in driving distance, and Atthaya Thitikul in 3rd ranking 5th OTT and 8th in driving distance.

The big-hitting Nanna Koerstz Madsen was excellent OTT when winning in 2022, ranking 2nd and was also the 2nd-longest driver that week. Lexi Thompson and Jessica Korda are two further winners who fall into this category; as is three-time winner, Yang, who ranked as one of the longest hitters on tour in the years she won.

Iron play is rarely not important. Whilst Lilia Vu defied an off week in this regard to win last year, six of the top 8 there ranked inside the top 10 in greens-in-regulation and four were inside the top 10 in approach.

Madsen ranked 3rd for GIR in 2022, whilst runner-up, Xiyu Lin was 3rd in both GIR and approach. Again we can look to winners further back, with Jessica Korda, Lexi Thompson, Anna Nordqvist and Inbee Park all excellent iron players.

Strong bermudagrass putters should of course be respected. Indeed, Lilia Vu led the field on the greens when winning last year and with the ease in which chances can be gained on the par 5s, you have to make the most of those holes to contend.

CORRELATING EVENTS (COURSES)

Chevron Championship (Mission Hills Country Club – Dinah Shore Course)

Up until 2023, every previous edition of the Chevron Championship was played at Mission Hills. As a tree-lined but spacious course, with similarly sized and speedy bermudagrass greens, it saw many previous performers carry form over to Thailand.

Notable correlating form:

Yani Tseng:

Honda LPGA (1st, 1st) / Chevron (1st)

Inbee Park:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Chevron (1st)

Lexi Thompson:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Chevron (1st)

Nanna Koerstz Madsen:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Chevron (3rd, 8th)

Amy Yang:

Honda LPGA (1st, 1st, 1st) / Chevron (4th, 8th, 10th)

Anna Nordqvist:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Chevron (4th, 7th)

Ariya Jutanugarn:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Chevron (4th, 4th)

Stacey Lewis:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Chevron (1st)

So Yeon Ryu:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Chevron (1st)

Mirim Lee:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Chevron (1st)

Celine Boutier:

Honda LPGA (3rd, 4th) / Chevron (4th)

Evian Championship (Evian Resort)

The quirky Evian Resort isn’t easily comparable but it’s another tree-lined course that has plenty of room out there, and has developed some strong correlating form with Siam CC as a result.

Notable correlating form:

Ai Miyazato:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Evian (1st, 1st)

Inbee Park:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Evian (1st)

Anna Nordqvist:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Evian (1st)

Ingee Chun:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Evian (1st)

Minjee Lee:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Evian (1st)

Amy Yang:

Honda LPGA (1st, 1st, 1st) / Evian (8th, 10th)

Brooke Henderson:

Honda LPGA (4th, 6th) / Evian (1st, 2nd)

Celine Boutier:

Honda LPGA (3rd, 4th) / Evian (1st)

Sei Young Kim:

Honda LPGA (3rd, 5th) / Evian (2nd, 5th, 6th, 8th)

Arkansas Championship (Pinnacle Country Club)

Following a similar theme, Pinnacle Country Club is both tree-lined yet spacious and has generally been home to lower scoring renewals in recent years.

Notable correlating form:

Yani Tseng:

Honda LPGA (1st, 1st) / Arkansas (1st, 1st)

Ai Miyazato:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Arkansas (1st)

Inbee Park:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Arkansas (1st)

Stacey Lewis:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Arkansas (1st, 1st)

So Yeon Ryu:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Arkansas (1st)

Atthaya Thitikul:

Honda LPGA (2nd) / Arkansas (1st)

Amy Yang:

Honda LPGA (1st, 1st, 1st) / Arkansas (2nd)

Anna Nordqvist:

Honda LPGA (1st) / Arkansas (2nd, 3rd)

Celine Boutier:

Honda LPGA (3rd, 4th) / Arkansas (5th)

Danielle Kang:

Honda LPGA (4th, 8th, 9th) / Arkansas (2nd, 2nd)

Jenny Shin:

Honda LPGA (4th) / Arkansas (3rd, 5th)

THE FIELD

As always we have a high-class field in this event, which includes six of the world’s top 10.

The head of these is reigning champion and current world #1, Lilia Vu, who is one of five former winners in attendance; along with Nanna Koerstz Madsen (2022), Ariya Jutanugarn (2021), Amy Yang (2015, 2017, 2019) and Anna Nordqvist (2014).

Last year’s KPMG Women’s PGA Championship winner, Ruoning Yin makes here debut in the event; with Hae Ran Ryu and Alex Pano also making their debuts after winning for the first time on tour in 2023.

The local challenge is typically strong, with Patty Tavatanakit hoping to carry over the momentum following her impressively emphatic seven-shot win in Saudi last week; and watch out for the top-ranked Thai amateur at the moment, Eila Galitsky, who won the prestigious Women’s Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship last year.

SELECTIONS

Market leaders: Xiyu Lin 11/1, Lilia Vu 12/1, Brooke Henderson 14/1, Celine Boutier 14/1, Hyo Joo Kim 14/1

Due to the high-class winners that this event usually delivers, I’m going to kick off right near the top of the betting this week and after starting this season strongly, it’s Canada’s Brooke Henderson who gets the nod as the headline selection in Thailand.

Brooke Henderson - 14/1 - 1/4 5 Places (3pts ew)

Henderson had a positive second half of the 2023 season. She recorded eight top 25 finishes in her final twelve starts, two top 10s - including a runner-up finish in the Evian Championship - and missed just two cuts.

She has picked up where she left off at the beginning of this year, finishing 3rd in the season-opening Tournament of Champions and followed with a 16th-place finish in the LPGA Drive On Championship.

The Canadian did most things well in the ToC, though especially excelled with the driver, ranking 4th. Whilst she again looked solid tee-to-green in her 16th-place finish, she was at her best with the putter, ranking 15th. All of her game looks in good shape and as a lengthy driver, she’s well suited to Siam CC.

No guesswork is required there however. Henderson has played here five time and after failing to break 70 on her debut 45th-place finish in 2017, she responded by recording finishes of 7th, 6th and 4th on her next three starts; shooting ten of twelve rounds in the 60s.

Her latest effort was a 44th-place finish last year but I’m happy to ignore that. If the three prior efforts to that aren’t evidence enough of her potential to perform in this event, correlating form which includes 1st and 2nd-place finishes in the Evian Championship, and a runner-up finish at Mission Hills should do the job.

Henderson’s tally of thirteen wins at just 26-years-old has her on track to be one of the most prolific winners in the tour’s history – she’s already in the top 50 - and she can add another one to her cabinet this week.

Haeran Ryu - 28/1 - 1/4 5 Places (1.75pts ew)

Haeran Ryu finally got the win that the consistency she’d shown in her rookie season deserved, when taking home the Arkansas Championship towards the end of 2023. Now playing in the Honda LPGA for the first time, she can lean on that winning experience to take to Siam CC at the first time of asking.

Since turning pro in 2019, Ryu had plied her trade almost exclusively on her home tour – the KLPGA. Five wins in four seasons during her time there made people aware of the talent she possesses and after taking medalist honours at the 2022 LPGA Q-Series, she earned her first stab at this elite level; immediately looking right at home.

She played twenty-five times last year and aside from that win in Arkansas, the Korean recorded fifteen further top-25 finishes, six of them top 10s, including a first in a major when 8th in the US Women’s Open.

Ryu is a solid all-rounder but she especially excels with the ball-striking, ranking 4th in greens-in-regulation, 10th in approach and 24th off-the-tee last season, where she is both accurate and not short on length.

That quality ball-striking has continued to fire in her opening two starts of the year, when finishing 12th in the ToC and 35th in the LPGA Drive On Championship. When combined with that attractive piece of correlating form in Arkansas, it should make her a contender this week.

Maja Stark - 60/1 - 1/4 5 Places (1pt ew)

Maja Stark made an impressive debut when finishing 4th here last year and as a high-class ball-striker, she looks a big price to go even better on her second visit.

Stark may have played the latter part of 2022 on the LPGA after her win in the ISPS Handa World Invitational earned her a tour card, but last year was her first full year as an LPGA player.

She made a great start to 2023, finishing 2nd in the ToC on her first start and 4th here two starts later; going on to record a further four top 10s and missed five cuts of twenty-two starts on tour.

The ball-striking was the key, as she ranked 19th in approach and 33rd OTT; another player who possesses both length and a reasonable level of accuracy. As a top-30 par 5 scorer, her profile appears a great one for this challenge.

She showed this to be the case with that 4th last year, opening with rounds of 66 and 67, and followed with a pair of 3-under-par rounds over the weekend to finish five shots adrift of Lilia Vu.

Stark was the strongest tee-to-green player in the field there, which was especially aided by her field-leading approach play and if she’d found a little more on the greens, she’d have run Vu close. Again looking in good form tee-to-green at the start of this year, I see little reason why we can’t see a repeat display this time around.

Nanna Koerstz Madsen - 150/1 - 1/4 5 Places (0.75pts ew)

Nanna Koerstz Madsen missed the cut when I put her up in the Saudi Ladies International last week. However, that shouldn’t take away too much from the encouraging start to the season she made on the LPGA. Coming to a course where she has not only won but holds the tournament record score, this price was too good to turn down.

After a disappointing year in 2023, Madsen has been able to put that to the back of her mind in 2024 and had looked much improved prior to last week’s missed cut. She finished 12th in the ToC to kick off the year - despite starting that event with a 2-over 74 - and finished 23rd on her next start in the LPGA Drive on Championship.

She putted well in both of those starts, combining it with some quality ball-striking that included her best approach display in over six months at the LPGA Drive On. As a player who possesses plenty of power she fits this setup.

Madsen obviously showed this with that superb win here in 2022, beating China’s Xiyu Lin in a playoff after both finished tied on -26. She also played well in both other visits to Siam CC, finishing 17th on debut in 2021 and putting up a solid defence last year, finishing 38th. Where she shot -9 over the weekend and once again putted these greens well.

Eila Galitsky - 200/1 - 1/4 5 Places - 0.5pts ew

Finally, I couldn’t help but take a chance with 17-year-old amateur, Eila Galitsky. Who looks like being the next big thing to come out of Thailand.

She currently ranks 41st in the World Amateur Golf Rankings and had a good year in 2022, where besides her amateur exploits she finished 22nd in the Asian Mixed Cup; a pro event staged between the men’s Asian Tour and the Ladies European Tour. Though she really stepped it up last year.

Her emphatic five-shot win in the Women’s Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship followed another impressive win at home in Thailand and got her into several high profile professional tournaments.

The first of these was a first major appearance in last year’s Chevron Championship, where she finished 28th to end the week as the top amateur. She then helped Thailand to the team gold medal in the Asian Games; finishing 7th on the individual leaderboard, with this week’s favourite in Thailand, Xiyu Lin only four shots ahead and 2023 major winner, Ruoning Yin a shot behind.

Galitsky finished her year with back-to-back 11th-place finishes. The first in the prestigious amateur event, the Espirito Santo Trophy and she repeated that result in the Women’s Australian Open, in a field that included several major winners.

She describes the driver as her biggest asset, where she’d rank around the top 10 on the LPGA in driving distance. With that being a key ingredient to success in this event she should enjoy this course.

Looking in good form at this venue’s Waterside Course in defence of her Women’s Asia-Pacific Amateur title on her only start this year, finishing 26th, Galitsky looks ready to once again make an impact at pro level this week.

Jamie Worsley previews the PGA, LPGA and DP World Tours for us at Betfred Insights. You can check out all of his previews and latest Golf Betting Tips on our Golf homepage...

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