After taking last week off, the PGA Tour is back in North America this week for the Mayakoba Classic in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.
El Camaleon Golf Course plays host for what will be the 13th year in a row and the name of the game at this track is ball-striking. The Greg Norman design has pretty much everything when it comes to scenery with the jungle, coastal views, and legitimate swampland.
It’s a resort layout, but that doesn’t mean guys can spray it off the tee on the under 7,000-yard course with trouble lurking on more than a handful of holes. Players that want to be in contention come the weekend will need to have their ball-striking in check in every facet.
Matt Kuchar won last year’s event at 22-under.
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Scheffler has had a strong start in the Fall swing with a T-28 at the Houston Open and is fresh off of a T-3 at the Bermuda Championship in his last start.
The Texas product is a ball-striking machine and this course should fit his eye extremely well. He leads the Tour in strokes gained: tee-to-green and sits fourth in strokes gained: approach. It’s his debut here, but I wouldn’t let that shy you away.
The 28-year-old Mexican will feel right at home at El Camaleon and should enter the week with major confidence after qualifying for the Presidents Cup International Team and finishing T-3 at the WGC-HSBC Champions at the start of the month.
He finished T-21 here a year ago and has found early success off the tee this season ranking 10th on Tour in strokes gained: off-the-tee.
This course clearly fits Lee seeing as how he finished T-2 a year ago. He also enters the week off of back-to-back Top 10 finishes.
Ball-striking has never been a problem for Lee, rather the putter has let him down in season’s past. A winner on every major professional tour, the 29-year-old is someone that always tends to fly under the radar but in a weaker field event like this week, it’s a perfect spot for him to grab PGA Tour win No. 2.
A former winner of the event, Gay already has three Top 25 finishes under his belt this new season including a T-3 in his latest start in Bermuda.
His lack of distance off the tee won’t hurt him on this week’s short track, but he’ll be looking for the irons to catch a bit of fire to compete come Sunday. His putter is capable of catching fire at any time and given his great history here, a total of four Top 25’s, you can’t overlook him.
Mark is a New York City-based writer and editor at Brobible. You can follow him on Twitter @MarkAndHisWords.