Torrey Pines South Key Fantasy Stats

Farmers Insurance Open

January 28th – 31st, 2021

Torrey Pines South Course

La Jolla, CA

Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,765

Purse: $7.5 million

with $1,350,000 to the winner

Defending Champion:
Marc Leishman

by Ed Pattermann

E-mail me at:

This is based on the most important stats for Torrey Pines South Course, based on data from last year’s Farmers Insurance Open, and using data from all the players in the field for stats from 2021.
The event is played on two courses, so the data are only for the rounds played on the South Course, not the one round data from the North Course.
The scoring average of the Torrey South Course field in 2020 was 72.53, and it was the 7th hardest course on tour. In 2019 was 71.73, making it the 18th hardest course on the PGA Tour. That is the first time that the South Course played under par since 2001, when it played to an average of 71.82. Days after that event, bulldozers came in, and the course was completely renovated for the 2008 U.S. Open by Rees Jones. So why did the course play so easily in 2019? Weather, it couldn’t be better, warm all four days with wind under 10 mph each day. With that, Justin Rose was able to shot 21 under par, the lowest winning score since Tiger Woods shot 22 under in 1999. Of course, the wind is always a factor, in 2018, with low temperatures the first three days and winds gusting up to 25 mph, the scoring average was 72.81, the 8th hardest course for the year. In 2017 it was windy each day, and the average was 72.77, making it the 14th hardest course on the PGA Tour. It was almost 2 shots easier than in 2016, when it was the 2nd hardest course on tour with a 74.50. That year, they had high winds so severe that they had to finish the round on Monday, so that is the reason for the change. 73.066 has been the south course average since 2015, but the overall tournament average has been 72.27. That’s because one round is played on the North Course, which has been a layup in past years, but the course had some changes done to it. Last year the north course played to a 70.57 average, while in 2019, it played to a 69.84 average, which was down, again because of the excellent weather conditions. Yes, the course was changed in 2016, which has made it a shot tougher, but the course has historically been about two shots easier.
Our course key is based on the South Course, which underwent another renovation before the 2020 event as it gets ready for the 2021 U.S. Open. There have been numerous subtle changes on the south course, but the most striking alterations were made to the 4th, 9th, 10th, 15th, and 17th holes. Tees were moved to make it harder to drive in the fairway, and new bunkers were added to make players think more about a shot.
Still, with the course lying on a bluff over the Pacific Ocean, mother nature always plays its part with possible fog this time of year, rain, and wind. For this year, temperatures will be mild in the low-60s each day, and rain is in the forecast for Thursday and Friday. Hard to believe that it can rain in San Diego, though it was sunny 365 days a year. The weather gets better on Saturday and perfect on Sunday, but it’s not going to be warm as the high will only be 61 degrees. The good news, winds will be light, 12 mph on Thursday and Friday, and below 10 mph over the weekend, so expect good scoring.

In looking at the stats for Torrey South last year, driving is essential. Last year it ranked 21st on the PGA Tour in driving distance but 8th in driving accuracy. This stat has always been important, it also ranked 1st in 2019 and ’18, and since 2014 it hasn’t ranked over 9th inaccuracy. So you think that you have to drive it straight to play well on the South Course? Not really, in looking at all the champions of the Farmers going back to 1997, only three were in the top-ten in driving accuracy. Phil Mickelson was T-7th in 2000, Ben Crane was T-8th in 2010, and Justin Rose was T-8th in 2019. But in looking at the driving distance, it’s a different story. Of the 22 winners since 1999, 13 of them were in the top-11 as last year’s winner Marc Leishman was T-34th, but 2020 winner Justin Rose was 11th. So driving is essential, the combination of hitting it far and straight.
Another vital stat is proximity to the hole, both for those that hit the fairway. Last year the field hit an average of 37 feet, 10 inches to the hole, making it the 9th hardest on tour. As for rough proximity, the course was 4th hardest, with the field hitting it an average of 48′ 11 inches. So with hitting into the fairway and hitting it far, our second important stat is Strokes Gained Approach-the-Green. Last year’s winner Marc Leishman was 5th, the same as 2019 winner Justin Rose. But the difference, Leishman was T-14th in greens hit while Rose was 2nd.
Our third category is putting inside 10 feet. In 2020 it ranked 2nd hardest as it’s always in the top-ten, matter of fact, the greens were the hardest to putt in 2017 and 2016. Several factors have made Torrey Pines the most challenging greens to make putts inside 10 feet over the years. The main reason that this stat is so extreme is the fact that the greens are Poa Annua, and since it’s close to the ocean, the greens are hard to judge and tend to get bumpy, especially late in the afternoon. Last year Leishman was 28th making 44 of 51 attempts inside ten feet. The year before, Justin Rose was T-39th in that stat, completing 46 of 53 putts. But in 2018, Jason Day shined in this stat, ranking 1st in the field making 49 of 51 tries for the week.
Our last category is scrambling manly because of its history, in which lots of greens are missed, and Torrey is adamant about getting it up and down. Last year it was the 4th hardest, but in previous years it was the 15th hardest in 2019, in 2018 it was 19th, but in 2017 it was the 5th hardest, the year before it was 2nd and over the previous six years, the course had been in the top-ten in this stat every year. As for winner Marc Leishman, he was T-4th in this stat on the 20 greens he missed he got up and down 15 times.

So here are our four choices for the most critical stats from players to do well at Torrey Pines South:

*Strokes gained Tee-to-Green: It’s a combination of hitting it straight and hitting it far. Since Torrey is so long, you have to hit the driver off of most tees. But the fairways are narrow, and the rough is hard if you get into it.

*Strokes Gained Approach-the-Green: It’s a combination of hitting the green from either the fairway or the rough.

*Putting inside 10 feet: This gauges how many putts a player makes inside ten feet. With Torrey having Poa Annua greens making all of these putts is essential and a challenge for players.

*Scrambling: The South Course is hard in this stat before 2018 it was historically very high in this stat as it was in the top-ten on tour between 2011 and 2017. But in 2018 it ranked 19th and last year it was 15th.

147 of the 156 players from this year’s field with stats from this year:

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

Speak Your Mind

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.