High stakes and challenges: Betting on the most difficult golf courses around the world

Home > 19th Hole > High stakes and challenges: Betting on the most difficult golf courses around the world
The toughest golf courses in the world will give the some of the most exciting betting options.
Posted on
June 23, 2024
Andy Newmarch in
Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Golf is a classic sport of precision and strategy, but some courses test the skills of even the most seasoned players. These challenging layouts frequently feature striking landscapes and some unique hazards.

While thrilling to play, they can also become a treasure trove for golf lovers looking for an exciting bet. Get ready to take a trip around the globe to learn about some of the most difficult golf courses, all while learning how to get your bets ready for the next big tournament.


How to bet on golf's biggest champions

You may have noticed that sports bettors are often drawn to the more difficult courses. That's because of the intense level of excitement and deep engagement these greens provide. There's a higher chance of upsets as top golfers wrestle with unforgiving terrain and unpredictable conditions.

You could even encounter situations where less famous players, possessing a unique set of skills, might surpass recognized professionals. The complexity and unpredictability of these courses give bettors a more thrilling and dynamic experience, making the potential rewards even more satisfying. Make sure that the sportsbook you choose has detailed live golf odds and a wide variety of betting options, including PGA golf odds on futures, head-to-head, 3-ball, and real-time wagering.


PGA Championship course difficulty

This year's PGA Championship took place at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky from May 16th to the 19th. It was a thrilling event thrilling for golfers and spectators. Jack Nicklaus, created Valhalla's design which spreads across more than 500 acres of Kentucky's hilly terrain and streams, posing a tough grueling challenge requiring some serious skill.

The course was created with two unique aspects in mind. The first nine wind through a floodplain, marked by rolling landscapes and open winds. The last nine holes have a park-like vibe with narrower paths surrounded by trees and strategically placed water obstacles, making the game more challenging. This variety keeps golfers on their toes, calling for flexibility and accurate shots. You can imagine that this well-maintained course and picturesque surroundings make Valhalla the perfect spot for golfers and a true test of championship quality.

Bryson DeChambeau, famous for his powerful drives, entered the championship with +2800 odds. He faced tough competition and took a T-3rd place in the championship showcasing strength and skill. Scottie Scheffler's game impressed at Valhalla with odds of +4000. His stable play resulted in an outstanding 2nd place, proving his reputation as a rising professional golfer. Both Collin Morikawa and Xander Schauffele stayed to their reputation as big championship contenders. Thanks to his accurate iron play and pressure handling, Morikawa emerged victoriously winning the PGA Championship title. In contrast, Schauffele matched DeChambeau's spectacle sharing T-3rd spot.


Narrow fairways and ocean breezes

There are several golf courses around the world that exhibit extreme difficulty. The Rezekne Golf & Country Club in Latvia is one of them. There, golfers can evaluate their abilities on the narrowest fairway in the world, a slender five yards wide, cutting through a thick pine forest. The task is considerable, and reselling lost golf balls creates an additional income stream for the club. On a different note, the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island in South Carolina presents a unique challenge. Famous for its coastal beauty, this course too is infamous for its endless winds and numerous sea holes that call for accurate shot control.

Carnoustie 1st Hole
1st hole on the Championship Links at Carnoustie

Overseas, Carnoustie Golf Links in Scotland has earned its reputation as "Golf's Hardest Test." The course features narrow fairways, deep sand traps, and the ever-present Barry Burn, dishing out severe penalties even for minor errors. The weather brings another hurdle as high winds can alter the lay of the course from day to day. Going in line with this pattern, Whistling Straits in Wisconsin echoes elements of a traditional links course. Large open spaces, deep sand pits, and strong winds from Lake Michigan create a significant challenge.


Gusting winds and dangerous cliffsides

Whistling Straits in Wisconsin, an iconic golf course, features a links-style design. It's famous for its large greens, deep sand traps, and strong winds from Lake Michigan. Success at Whistling Straits, like at Kiawah Island, depends on a golfer's ability to deal with harsh weather and the clever course layout. People placing bets should look for players who have done well in windy situations on this tough course.

Overlooking Hawke's Bay in New Zealand, Cape Kidnappers presents stunning views along with a hard golf experience. The course features deep gaps and fairways that edge along ridges requiring tactical shots and a lot of bravery from golfers. Some golfers might find the cliffside layout stressful while others may enjoy the unique test it offers. With these varying factors, Cape Kidnappers makes for an interesting dynamic between golfers and bettors.

The artistry of a difficult wager

What's the secret to placing a successful bet on a challenging golf course? Information matters. Look for golf players with a track record of performing well on that particular course. The player's current performance level is also key. A golfer in top shape is more prepared to manage mental and physical challenges. Pay attention to weather forecasts too. You should choose golfers who can cope with harsh conditions if high winds or rain are expected.

Accuracy is more critical than sheer power when dealing with tough courses. Golfers who reliably hit the fairway, such as Xander Schauffele, gain noticeable benefits. Other important factors include Greens in Regulation (GIR) and scrambling skills. Accurate iron shots are essential for reaching the putting green, while the ability to recover par from challenging situations often distinguishes champions on these demanding courses.


A rewarding challenge

Placing a bet on a difficult golf course all comes down to considering a number of factors. Course awareness is top priority, giving an edge to players who have previously done well there. A player's current form and weather resilience are also key factors. Backing up golfers known for accurate driving, good scrambling, and mental strength can provide gamblers with an advantage in such difficult environments.

Golf provides an intriguing mix of grace and toughness, especially on the sport's toughest courses. By comprehending the unique trials these designs offer and what leads to victory, fans of golf and bettors can better appreciate the challenges of the sport and admire the skilful players who conquer these tough courses.

Avatar photo

About Andy Newmarch

Being one of the original owners of the ‘Top 100 Golf Courses’ website enabled Andy to travel far and wide playing and rating courses, with the numbers somewhere around 1200 courses in 40 countries. Although now away from the day-to-day grind of course ranking, having a keen eye on course developments is still high on the agenda. Currently hanging on to a handicap index of 9.9 he is probably as competitive on the course than ever but more often than not will compliment this by relaxing at the 19th hole to make up for the hard work!

Read Next

Rory McIlroy looks dejected on the fourth hole during day two of The Open at Royal Troon

Rory McIlroy & Justin Thomas among victims of strong winds

Tiger Woods equalled his worst number of shots for two rounds in a major.
Tiger Woods covers his face with his right hand while holding his putter in his left

Tiger Woods planning to return to Open after Troon disappointment

The three-time champion missed the cut at 14 over.
Shane Lowry raises his cap after a birdie on the 18th

Shane Lowry ready for Troon challenges as he chases second Open title

The 2019 champion is seven under after two rounds at Royal Troon.
Tiger Woods of the United States acknowledges the crowd following his round on the 18th green on day two of The 152nd Open championship at Royal Troon

Tiger's torment – now ours

M. James Ward reviews the continued ineffectual play of the 15-time major champion and why the prognosis is hardly promising.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram