Gregory Bourdy, top-10 here last year and on two of his last four starts, look another with ideal conditions and would be first reserve if any of the other selections pulled out. Louis Oosthuisen also made the shortlist after his fifth in Austria, and would rate superb value at 66/1 if he could confirm a return to the form shown at the beginning of the year. This is very much his type of course, and the same could be said of Raphael Jacquelin.
 
Instead, the final selection is DANNY WILLETT, who scored particularly well across all this week’s key stats. As the Cabrera-Bello instance proved emphatically, and Noren to a lesser extent, these talented youngsters are worth sticking with until they break through. At least in Willett’s case, having earlier grabbed a place for us when starting at 90/1, he doesn’t owe us too much. He remains a quite outstanding prospect, and this course should suit his style much more than other recent venues, where he performed creditably anyway.
 
Finally, a quick word about three rank outsiders who came in for consideration. Oskar Henningson is a huge price on the basis of his form in July and August, and showed an impressive temperament for that win in the Czech Republic. Peter Lawrie is also massively over-priced given that he finished second in the similar standard KLM Open just three starts ago, and has a particularly strong record in this part of the world. He very nearly made the staking plan, though didn’t go down in my good books with that weak finish in Holland when carrying our cash. And Daniel Vancsik, twice a Euro Tour winner already and a massive hitter, is not without claims at 125/1.
 
Advised golf bets for the Madrid Masters:
 
2pts ew CHARL SCHWARTZEL @ 25/1 (TOTE, LADBROKES, CORAL)
1.5pts ew ALVARO QUIROS @ 35/1 (BET365, BETFRED)
1.5pts ew ALEXANDER NOREN @ 40/1 (GENERAL, 45/1 CORAL)
1pt ew RICARDO GONZALEZ @ 50/1 (GENERAL)
1pt ew DANNY WILLETT @ 66/1 (SPORTINGBET, LADBROKES)
 
LONG-TERM ALREADY ADVISED

RACE TO DUBAI

2.5pts ew ROSS FISHER @ 20/1
2.5pts ew PAUL CASEY @ 20/1
6pts win PAUL CASEY @ 8/1
1.5pts ew OLIVER WILSON @ 33/1

2008/2009 STATS: -191pts
2007/2008 STATS: +618pts

Where next?

Golf Monthly competitions: Win golf prizes 
Golf Tour news: Simon Dyson wins Alfred Dunhill Links Championship
Equipment news: New Cobra ZL driver
TaylorMade reviews: TaylorMade R9 TP irons review