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  • SBK – the sportsbook app powered by Smarkets – is delighted to announce the launch of the new SBK Betting Podcast, hosted by Jess Stafford of Racing TV.
  • Every episode will feature a new guest from the world of sport, starting with Lee Westwood, one of the most recognisable faces in golf for over 20 years.
  • Westwood is due to tie with Sir Nick Faldo’s record of 11 Ryder Cup appearances when he represents Team Europe at Whistling Straits this week and speaking exclusively to SBK on the podcast, he said:

“It’s ironic really that he set the record of 11 Ryder Cups in 1997 at Valderrama where I was his partner and that was my first one, so it’s all kind of gone full circle really. He’s obviously a legend of the game and it’s nice to be tying a record that he holds.”

  • The Ryder Cup veteran also commented on Brooks Koepka’s criticism of the ‘hectic’ event schedule:

“I can see where Brooks is coming from. Some people find it difficult to adjust to that team environment. We’ve all got into golf because we like the buck to stop with us at the end of the day. We like being individuals. A lot of us played team sports in our youth and we’ve kind of transferred to golf because it’s an individual sport and we like that environment, and then you get thrown into the team environment. The week of the Ryder Cup there is a lot to do, they cram a lot of media in, dinners etc. and practice rounds take a lot longer, and there aren’t a lot of hours in the day. And if you’re somebody like Brooks who likes to chill out going into tournaments it’s difficult; at a Major Championship he might play 18 holes on Monday, nine holes Tuesday, nine holes Wednesday, and really not do a lot but at the Ryder Cup it’s very full on!”

  • Team USA are 4/7 favourites with SBK to lift the trophy but Westwood does not believe these odds factor in the team element of the Ryder Cup enough:

“All the statistics that are used for compiling the odds take into consideration individual achievements. The world rankings are all based on individual achievements. But at the Ryder Cup you come together as a team so it’s completely different to what we do week in and week out. European teams seem to bond well and bond that little bit better (than the Americans). I always go into it not really thinking that either team is particularly the favourite. It’s a pretty level playing field and I think it’s just who holes the most putts at the right time, and generally just plays that last hole well when you need to under pressure; that’s who is going to come out on top at the end of the week.”

  • Westwood also announced that his son, Sam, would be taking over caddying duties from his wife Helen, who caddied for him at the recent BMW PGA Championship:

“Sam’s doing the Ryder Cup, my son. Helen’s doing all the wives and partners things and Sam’s doing the caddying. Sam’s caddied a lot for me this year, at the Masters and other events in Europe like the Scottish Open. They share it between the two of them.  Both know what to say to me, they don’t get involved in the yardage or picking clubs but they’re good on the psychology side of things. They just keep me in a good, nice, relaxed frame of mind which is even more important the week of the Ryder Cup.”

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