Four popular fan bets at PGA National’s 17th hole


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PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Cash wagers are a part of the party in the Honda Classic’s stadium seating surrounding the 17th hole at PGA National’s Champion Course.

Whether between groups of friends or complete strangers, fans attending Sunday’s final round are sure to see cash trading hands when viewing play on the final hole of the world-famous Bear Trap.

Here’s a look at four of the gallery’s most humorous and popular wagers from the first three rounds of the Honda Classic 2022:

Caddie racing

And they’re off!

Rowdy fans at No. 17 have pulled some caddies into the off-course competition, placing wagers on which caddie will walk from the tee box and step on the green first.

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With caddies wearing red, blue or white bibs, don’t be surprised to hear patrons calling out the colors of their wagered caddie as they pass in front of public grandstands that are pulsing with club music.

Helen Storey, the caddie and wife of Lee Westwood, said some caddies are well aware that fans have money riding on their walking pace and aren’t shy to influence the outcome of wagers.

“So we try to get there together and mess with them,” said Storey, who paused with her foot in the air just short of the No. 17 green on Thursday. “…We try and have fun all the time. When it stops being fun it’s not worth it.”

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Left or right of the hole?

This wager is as simple as it gets: Will the golfer’s tee shot land left or right of the hole?

The direction is based on the golfer’s perspective from the tee box. Astute wagers will consider hole placement and the shot trajectory of recent golfers to make this bet more of an educated guess.

Who pulls the pin?

The caddies are again the target of wagers as fans bet which caddie will be the first to pull the pin from the hole on No. 17. These rules can vary from first to touch the pin to which caddie returns the pin to the cup.

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Bingo, Bango, Bongo

Though not necessarily using this name, fans have placed wagers according to the rules of this classic golf gambling game.

Which player will be first on the green? Bingo.

Closest to the hole with all balls on the green? Bango.

First in the cup? Bongo.

Three points are available with each group that comes through No. 18, meaning players can assign values to each wager and carry wins from group to group.

With the difficulty of hitting the No. 17 green, it’s not as simple as picking the first golfer in a group while the rules of “Bango” allow opportunities for wins even if the initial tee shot finds the water.

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