LIV Golf returns this weekend with its first event of the 2023 season at El Camaleón Mayakoba in Mexico. Picking up where it left off in 2022, the controversial tour’s inaugural event of the calendar year will feature a star-studded field, beautiful tropical vistas, and of course, a massive purse of $25 million. Let’s break down the betting odds for this tournament and detail our best bets to win, place, and prevail head-to-head.
No matter your stance on LIV and its backers, this weekend should certainly provide some entertaining golf. The weather projects to be sunny and 86 degrees every day, and the star-studded field will include Dustin Johnson, Cameron Smith, and Brooks Koepka. The loot won’t be bad, either — the overall prize money for the 2023 LIV tour has been increased by 63 percent to $405 million, with the tour schedule expanding from eight events to 14. That’s quite a way to make a splash for LIV’s inaugural event in Latin America.
“Each LIV Golf event will have a purse of $25 million — $20 million for the individual event and another $5 million for the team event. The individual winner will take home $4 million, while the winning team adds $3 million ($750,000 per player). So the top-rated player on the top-rated team in a given LIV Golf event would make $4.75 million for a single event.”
The style takes some getting used to, especially for traditional fans of the PGA, but many have welcomed the unique 54-hole, no-cut format — and LIV’s massive payouts — with open arms. And one thing’s for sure: the golfers will be playing to win.
Yeah, it’s chalky, but as we have learned so often this betting year, betting chalk frequently translates to winning money. Johnson remains one of the best golfers in the world, having compiled a spectacular 2022 highlighted by multiple tournament wins and a unique combination of driving power and accuracy. His biggest win came at LIV’s individual championship — more formally called the LIV Golf Invitational Series individual title — for a whopping $18 million bonus. The guy never seems to feel any kind of pressure, and he’s head and shoulders above the rest of the LIV player pool.
LIV Golf Mexico: Top value bet
Carlos Ortiz (+3300)
A Guadalajara native, Ortiz has plenty of experience playing El Camaleón. He last played at the gorgeous course at the World Wide Technology Championship at Mayakoba in 2021, finishing as the tournament’s runner-up at -19. He has the course knowledge, driving accuracy, and around-the-green skills to come away from this weekend as the first LIV champion of 2023.
LIV Golf Mexico: Best sleeper
Branden Grace (+3500)
Wouldn’t it be something if Grace won the first LIV event of 2023, the year after he shot a final-round 65 to win LIV’s inaugural event in Portland? Hey, crazier things have happened. Grace has uncanny accuracy — he’s been a fairway-hitting machine his entire professional career — and a quick look at his highlight reel shows you how dominant he can be when he hits his groove. He has plenty of wins in tropical climates, including the 2021 Puerto Rico Open with an eagle-birdie finish. We think Grace once again has enough to make some noise at this event and would at least hunt down a top-20 prop with his name on it.
LIV Golf Mexico Betting Guide: Course overview
A pristine course originally designed by LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman in 2006, El Cameleón Golf Course measures 7,024 yards in length. The course features picturesque views of the surrounding Caribbean Sea, Mayan jungle, and dense mangroves. It has been referred to as a course that’s friendly to golfers of all abilities, but we’ll just call it a birdie dreamland. El Cameleón only has a few truly long holes, but even those are more geared toward the accurate than the powerful. Golfers with accurate irons and strong around-the-green play will have a leg up on the competition this weekend.