Travelers Championship 2024 First Round Leader Tips: Three to start hot on Thursday

 | Wednesday 19th June 2024, 15:18pm

Wednesday 19th June 2024, 15:18pm

jamie worsley pga tour

Jamie Worsley has already given us his Travelers Championship Betting Tips but he's also picked out three players who he expects to go low on Thursday in Washington State. Here are his Travelers Championship First Round Leader Tips. 

Travelers Championship First Round Leader Tips

  • 0.75 pts Taylor Pendrith each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 55/1
  • 0.75 pts Mackenzie Hughes each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 66/1
  • 0.75 pts Davis Riley An each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 70/1

*Click on the linked odds to add the selections directly to your betslip on betfred.com (or app)

The Travelers Championship begins tomorrow and with what looks a fairly significant bias in terms of the forecast, I’ve been tempted into the first-round leader market.

Temperatures are predicted to be relatively hot, especially in the afternoon, at which time conditions may get uncomfortably humid. When we also counter in the fact that the wind is set to whip up substantially later in the day, with gusts of around 8mph for the morning starters replaced by 24mph gusts for the later starters, it looks as though those teeing off early will have the best of the first-round conditions.

With that, I’ve gone with three players who all tee-off before 10am; two of them among the first five groups onto the course.

0.75 pts Taylor Pendrith each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 55/1

Start time: 08:35

First up is Taylor Pendrith, who has been firing low rounds for fun in the last couple of months and should be in buoyant mood after recording his first major top-20 last week in the US Open.

Pendrith has had many strong performances this year but the undoubted highlight would have to be his first PGA Tour victory in the CJ CUP Byron Nelson in Texas six starts ago. He has continued to play well since then, recording three top-25s in his last five starts and comes into this week after an excellent 16th-place finish at Pinehurst.

His win in Texas included four rounds of 67 or better. He fired a 64 in the first round to sit 2nd after 18 holes and then recorded the second-best round of the week in round three, shooting a 63.

Pendrith is currently enjoying the best putting season of his career, ranking 5th and it’s this ability to get hot on the greens that make him a danger in this market. He struggled on the greens here on debut last year to miss the cut but a second-round 66 showed that he can go low at the course, and with that new-found standard of putting he’s showing this year, I fancy him to kick off his second attempt at the Travelers Championship in better fashion tomorrow.

0.75 pts Mackenzie Hughes each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 66/1

Start time: 09:40

Mackenzie Hughes has twice held the first-round lead in this event and I believe he looks well placed to do so again from his early tee-time on Thursday.

Prior to his last two missed cuts in tough, elite-field events, Hughes had been enjoying a hot period of form, recording three top-10 finishes in his previous seven starts: 3rd in the Valspar Championship, 6th in the Wells Fargo Championship and 7th at home in the Canadian Open.

He’d also been starting well across some of these starts, recording consecutive first-round finishes of 13th in the Valspar, 6th in the Houston Open and 4th in the RBC Heritage. Whilst not as swift out of the blocks in recent starts, his weeks have been littered with low rounds, with a pair of 64s in the Byron Nelson, a 66 to close in the Wells Fargo Championship and a second-round 64 in the Canadian Open.

Hughes has played here seven times and made the weekend on the first six occasions, before withdrawing after a poor start last year. Across these starts, he’s shot four rounds of 67 and two 66s, though his two best rounds at the course came when opening with a 64 to share the first-round lead in 2019, and the following year, he fired an incredible 10-under-par 60 to lead by three after round one. Hopefully he can record his third FRL at the Travelers Championship tomorrow.

0.75 pts Davis Riley An each-way (1/4 - 5 places) @ 70/1

Start time: 08:45

Davis Riley has had three first-round top-3s in his last six solo starts and after shooting a couple of low rounds here last year, I fancy him to finally turn one of those into a first-round lead this week.

Riley had been having a poor year before a 14th-place finish in the Houston Open. He then built on that positivity two starts ago in the Charles Schwab Challenge, recording a first solo PGA Tour victory by an impressive five strokes.

That performance in Houston was started by an opening 65 to sit 3rd after round one. Two starts later in the CJ CUP Byron Nelson, he fired a superb 64 to finish the first round in 2nd place and repeated that feat the week he won at Colonial, shooting 66 in the opening round to again sit 2nd after 18 holes.

Riley has played here twice and though not sniffing the first-round lead yet, I was impressed by his play in rounds two and four last year, where he fired rounds of 63 and 64 to record the second and fourth-best rounds of those days respectively. This shows that he has the capabilities to go low enough here and with those recent fast starts, I’m encouraged to take him to find another one on Thursday.

You can find all Jamie's latest Golf Betting Tips over on our dedicated golf Insights hub.

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