Will Valhalla Golf Club Host Another Major Championship?

Will Valhalla Golf Club Host Another Major Championship?
Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

Once again, Valhalla produced drama for golf fans and Kentucky sportsbooks. Xander Schauffele went wire-to-wire, but he needed a six-foot birdie putt on the final hole to edge Bryson DeChambeau by a stroke to win the PGA Championship Sunday. His final-round score of six-under and total of 21-under gave the world’s No. 3-ranked golfer his first major championship.

The Jack Nicklaus-designed course is not without its critics. Many argue that Valhalla produces too many low scores for a major tournament. A decade ago, Rory McIlroy shot 16-under to beat Phil Mickelson by a stroke. In 2000, Tiger Woods and Bob May both shot 18-under.

Right now, Valhalla is not on the list for a future PGA Championship. With that in mind, BetKentucky.com has set odds on whether the 38-year-old course will host another major. Keep in mind these odds are unofficial. You will not find them at any licensed Kentucky sports betting operator, like Fanatics Sportsbook Kentucky.

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Odds of Valhalla Hosting Another Major

Decision 

Odds

Percentage Chance

Yes

-150

60%

No

+150

40%

First off, these odds do not take into account the tragedy that happened Friday, where a security worker lost his life after being hit by a shuttle bus hours before the second round started. That unfortunate incident, as well as the headline-grabbing events that took place after, could have happened anywhere. It should not be a factor in whether Valhalla gets another major.

The criticism about the scoring at Valhalla is completely fair, and it might be something that the Louisville businessmen who own the course examine in the not-too-distant future. It may not be possible to lengthen the course, but maybe some work on the greens could make it more difficult.

Then again, is it really an issue? 

People watch golf majors to see the world’s best duel it out over four days. Scores matter to some, but many just want to watch a competitive event that produces a thrilling finish. There’s no question Valhalla produces that. Of the four PGAs held there, two have been decided by a playoff, and the other two have been decided on the final hole.

The community has also embraced the event as well. All four PGAs held at Valhalla have produced large crowds, and course co-owner Jimmy Kirchdorfer told The Courier Journal that this year’s PGA Championship “was the all-time, most-attended and highest-revenue” in the major’s history.

Not only did ticket sales set records but there were also more than 700,000 square feet of hospitality tents. That includes the ESPN BET Lounge just off the 13th green.

USA Today photo by Matt Stone.

A Return Will Take Some Time

While we believe a major is likely to come back to Valhalla, there’s no guarantee it will be anytime soon. After going just four years between its first two, the PGA returned 14 and 10 years later. That’s a more realistic rotation.

The location for eight of the next 10 PGA Championships has already been settled. The next two available are in 2032 and 2033. Last week, PGA of America officials told WDRB-TV that Valhalla is among five courses under consideration for 2032.

In terms of a major, Valhalla has a next-to-nil shot at landing a U.S. Open, as the U.S. Golf Association prefers more demanding courses. So the next major, should it get one, would be a PGA Championship. However, it may also be considered for another high-profile event.

Valhalla hosted the Ryder Cup in 2008, where the U.S. team won back the Cup from Europe in part thanks to two Kentuckians – Kenny Perry and J.B. Holmes. The next open date for America to host the event is in 2037. Valhalla could be the perfect backdrop for Louisville native Justin Thomas to captain the U.S. squad.

Stick with BetKentucky.com for more golf coverage throughout the PGA Tour season, plus the top Kentucky sportsbook promos.

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Author

Steve is an accomplished, award-winning reporter with more than 20 years of experience covering gaming, sports, politics and business. He has written for the Associated Press, Reuters, The Louisville Courier Journal, The Center Square and numerous other publications. Based in Louisville, Ky., Steve has covered the expansion of sports betting in the U.S. and other gaming matters.

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