Willett taking in a slice of Americana in preparation for the US Open

The former Masters champion has rented an RV to stay close to Pebble Beach

Danny Willett believes he is in good form heading into the US Open. (John Walton/PA)
Danny Willett believes he is in good form heading into the US Open. (John Walton/PA)

No player is better placed to win the US Open in terms of form than Rory McIlroy following his commanding victory in the Canadian Open on Sunday.

But when it comes to the best place to be based for the third major of the season at Pebble Beach, former Masters champion Danny Willett may just have found the ideal solution.

“We’ve got ourselves parked a mile away, right on the Cypress Point peninsula in a little RV (recreational vehicle),” Willett told Press Association Sport.

“There are a few places around here you can stay in but the majors are always the same. The traffic can be horrendous. You can be five miles away and it takes you an hour so we’re staying as close as possible with as little hassle as possible.

“We spend so much of our lives in hotels so we try and get houses a lot of the time. This is just that on a slightly smaller, more American scale.”

Willett has been based in America this season and comes into the US Open on the back of a tie for eighth behind McIlroy in Canada, his first top-10 finish on the PGA Tour since he won the Masters in 2016.

That statistic overlooks his superb victory in the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai in November but does offer further proof that 18 months of injuries and poor form appear to be firmly behind the former world number nine.

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“I haven’t played lots of golf so it’s nice to get into a run of a few events in a row,” the 31-year-old added. “Memorial turned out to be a really good week, and Canada the same kind of thing.

“It was nice to have a couple of nice results in the run-up to a major. In the past, I’ve liked to just do the majors on their own, but for getting game-ready and in a better place for scoring, I think a couple in a row might help that.

“We’ve had a lot of top 25s so far this year, just not quite pressed on. If you take Rory out of it last week we’ve finished five back from second so we’re getting close and will just keep on doing what we’re doing and see what’s on the horizon.”

Willett has never played Pebble Beach before but is expecting a typical US Open test with thick rough surrounding narrow fairways on a 7,075-yard layout which is short by modern standards, although the course’s small greens are one of its main defences.

Willett revealed that, after a number of controversies over course set-up in recent years, tournament organisers, the USGA, are keeping them well-watered – for now at least.

“US Open rough is always synonymous with being a bit ridiculous and from what I’ve seen on Twitter it’s the same this week, but at least it’s not like that while having to hit four irons in,” Willett added.

Pebble Beach is renowned for its tough rough. (David J. Phillip/AP)
Pebble Beach is renowned for its tough rough. (David J. Phillip/AP)

“In my head, this is back to old-school US Opens where the fairways are going to be nipped in certain areas, the greens are going to be firm, the weather’s set to be pure all week.

“We’ve already had a text through saying they are going to syringe the greens, make sure they stay watered because the weather has been so good.

“But then come Thursday you can see the sprinklers being turned off and the course changing like it always does.”

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