Quail Hollow Key Fantasy Stats

Wells Fargo Championship

May 3rd – 6th, 2018

Quail Hollow Club

Charlotte North Carolina

Par: 71 / Yardage: 7,554

Purse: $7.7 million

with $1,386,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Brian Harman

by Sal Johnson

Founder, Chief Data Officer, GOLFstats

E-mail me at:

Quail Hollow is back at the Wells Fargo after hosting the PGA Championship just nine months ago. This course has a lot of history in the last 15 years of hosting events in golf and it will continue hosting not only the Wells Fargo, but in 2021 the Presidents Cup and who knows, in future years it could hold another PGA Championship (maybe as early as 2025) and possibly a Ryder Cup down the road.

So this week’s information is based on the most important stats for Quail Hollow, based on data from last years PGA Championship, and using data from all the players in the field with stats from 2018. What we do is take their rank for each stat and then add up the four categories.
The scoring average of the field at Quail Hollow in the 2017 Presidents Cup was 73.47, so with par being 71 (for that week) which meant the average score was two and a half shots over par, making Quail Hollow the hardest course to score on in 2017. For the PGA Championship, there were changes made to the course, first a new type of Ultradwarf Bermudagrass was planted. They also cut down several thousands of trees, so Quail Hollow is a lot sparser than before. They also have come up with four holes that will be totally different as the 1st and 2nd holes are now one long, 540 yard, par 4. The 5th hole was changed from a par 5 to a par 4 and a new second hole was built, it’s now a par 3. Also, major work was done on the 11th hole. The famous finish wasn’t touched, but the course is now a par 71 compared to it being a par 72. Even with the reduce par, the course picked up 25 more yards and played at 7,600 yards. For this year’s Wells Fargo the course will play 46 yards shorter with most of that yardage coming off the first hole (29 yards, from 524 last year to 495 this year). The other change comes at the 4th hole (184 down to 167). Now the big difference players will see this week compared to what they saw last August at the PGA Championship is the rough and condition of the course. During the PGA at the end of summer, the course was bone dry and ran faster, the summer heat help grow the rough and make it thicker, while this year the course will be softer and rough not as tough.

From year to year Quail Hollow is demanding and tough, you look at the list of winners who are some of golf’s best ball strikers like Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods, Jim Furyk, Vijay Singh and Lucas Glover. Yes, some weird winners like Derek Ernst, Joey Sindelar, and James Hahn have won They are on the list, but most of the time you’re going to get a quality winner, someone that plays well in major championships and WGC events. So in looking at our four categories, they are all related to ball-striking, except for the last category which I think will be very important and that is scrambling.
First is driving accuracy, the field at the PGA Championship hit a total of 58.59% of the fairways and was the 19th hardest fairway to hit on the PGA Tour. But when the Wells Fargo was played at Quail Hollow in 2016 it was the 5th hardest as only 51.01% of the fairways were hit. At the PGA Championship, winner Justin Thomas hit 50.00% of the fairways and ranked T-62nd.
The course is also long, so players have to hit drivers off the tee and you don’t see many players lay back with a 3 wood or long iron. Our second category is proximity to hole, this is the cousin to greens in regulation which Quail Hollow was the hardest to hit last year, but it’s important to see how close a player can get to the hole and at Quail Hollow last year it was a bit over 43 feet and ranked 1st on tour in 2017. As for Thomas, he was T-29th. Our third category is strokes gained tee to green, again this gives an overall look at a player from the tee to the green, last year Thomas was 22nd which makes you wonder how Thomas didn’t seem to do very well tee-to-green but still won. That’s because he putted well, made lot’s of birdies and even though scrambling was the number one stat making Quail Hollow the hardest to scramble on in 2017, Thomas was T-30th. Still what Thomas did last year really didn’t conform to the average player which over the years has proven to be important elements in the victory.

So the secret is that this week a ball striker or a very good putter will rule and take the championship. I go more towards ball striking because the course usually in the past is important.

*Driving Accuracy: Important because the fairways are close to U.S. Open length and if you drive it into the rough, it’s tough.

*Proximity to hole: Hitting greens is important, last year Quail Hollow ranked 19th, but in proximity to hole, which tells how close players get to the hole, Quail Hollow ranked 1st as the players averaged getting it 44 feet.

*Strokes Gained tee-to-green: You need to hit it long and straight along with hitting lots of greens. Last year the course was 36th in driving distance and 19th in accuracy. So this is important to find a player that will do this

*Scrambling: The percent of the time a player misses the green in regulation, but still makes par or better. Last year Quail Hollow was 1st on the PGA Tour showing how tough it is to scrambling at Quail Hollow.

Here are the 137 of 156 players from this year’s field with stats from 2018

Click any column title in the table header to sort columns.

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