The 2016 Open Championship is upon us as the 145th edition of the famous tournament is set to take place at Royal Troon in Scotland from Thursday. It promises to be another enthralling renewal of the third major of the year as the event returns to Royal Troon for the first time since 2004 and history would suggest that American players are well worth following in the betting...

The Big Four

The last six winners at Royal Troon have all hailed from the USA and they will be relishing a crack at this traditional seaside links, where driving distance and accuracy have proven to be important factors over the years, albeit it goes without saying that a quality all-round game will be required when taking on this 7,064 yard, par-71 course.

Dustin Johnson heads to Scotland as the bookmakers' favourite as the American has turned the 'big three' into a 'big four' with his maiden major win at the US Open last month. Johnson is bidding to win back-to-back majors and a third tournament in a row following his success at Oakmont and the WGC Bridgestone Invitational. The American is a quality links player, as he showed when tying 2nd at the 2011 Open, and he can be backed at 9/1.

Johnson is joined by the form man of 2016, Jason Day (9/1), who has won three times during 2016 and the Australian will be looking to build on his top-five effort from twelve months ago.

Rory McIlroy (10/1) is the only one of the 'big four' to have won the Open and the 2014 champion will be keen to make up for lost time after missing last year's edition through injury.

Meanwhile, Jordan Spieth came close at St Andrews in 2015 but the 11/1 shot has been struggling for form of late and there are plenty of question marks surrounding a man who threw away a five-shot lead at the US Masters earlier this year.

Course Form

Royal Troon has hosted The Open eight times previously but the last was in 2004 so there is very little in the way of course form to go on. It is always worth treating the veterans with respect when it comes to this tournament and 2013 champion Phil Mickelson (45/1 with Coral) did tie 3rd here twelve years ago, while two-time Open winner Ernie Els (125/1 with Bet Victor) top-tenned in 1997 before losing out to Todd Hamilton in a play-off in 2004.

Lee Westwood also has past form here as he top-tenned in 1997 and tied 4th in 2004, although that elusive major win continues to blight his career - could this be his year? Bet 365 go 50/1 for the Englishman to lift the Claret Jug on Sunday.

The Best Of The Rest

Away from the 'big four', there are a cluster of players in contention as Adam Scott (28/1 with Coral) bids to build on his two wins during 2016, while a host of others are looking for a first major title.

Sergio Garcia (25/1), twice a runner-up at The Open, the in-form Branden Grace (28/1) and recent BMW International Open winner Henrik Stenson (28/1) are all looking to break their duck, as is Rickie Fowler (28/1), who has missed the cut in three of his last six major appearances.

2016 Open Championship Odds