With the popularity of golf surging over the past few years, sportsbooks have begun to capitalize as well, offering more options than ever for bettors to get in on the action. One such option, the first-round leader (FRL) bet, is among the new markets offered each and every week on the PGA Tour.
Let’s take a closer look at the First-Round Leader bet and some ways you can potentially cash in on it.
What is a Golf First-Round Leader Bet?
A golf first-round leader bet is just like what it sounds; picking which golfer will lead the field after completing the first round. Unlike traditional outright bets, the first-round leader can be more than one person, as two or more players can have the same score in the second round. In the event of a first-round leader tie, most sportsbooks will apply the “dead heat” rule, meaning they will split the odds by the #s of players tied.
As you should with all bets you place, make sure you are aware of your sportsbook’s rules regarding things like this.
Strategy for Making Golf First-Round Leader Bets
While there are a handful of factors you’ll want to consider when making your FRL bets, the most important are course conditions and weather. For most sportsbooks, FRL odds are posted on Monday and available until the first tee-off on Thursday morning, making the weather forecasts for Thursday critical. It’s also worth checking how the weather will be in the days leading up to the first tee box, as the course conditions will follow suit.
Taking this a step further, whether it be high winds or wet conditions, it’s worth studying which players excel in those conditions and which players excel early on in tournaments. With no shortage of data and player history when it comes to golf, a player’s history in the first rounds at the given course is also something you’ll want to have done your research on.
Lastly, I like to check how the player did the week prior if they played, considering the travel schedule in the lead-up to the first round in the current week. If the player had missed the cut in the previous week or took the week off, their performance on Thursday could vary versus if they played late into Sunday and had to fly across the country on Monday to prepare for this week.
Whether you’re new to sports betting or a betting pro, our How To Bet and Sports Betting Strategy and Advice pages are for you. You can get started with our 101 section — including How to Bet on Sports — or head to more advanced strategy — like 10 Tips to Become a Sharper Sports Bettor — to learn more.