The best players on the Champions Tour are in the mix after round one of the Toshiba Classic.
Bernhard Langer is in the lead by two strokes after an eight-under 63. Langer is carrying four wedges in the bag this week, and he executed his game plan perfectly:
I drove it great, I hit some good iron shots, hit pretty much every green or most greens in regulation, and putted pretty solid too…I was real happy with just about every club in my bag, didn’t make any major hiccups, rolled a couple of 15-footers in, missed a couple too, but that’s the norm out here.
Fred Couples, Chien Soon Lu and Jeff Hart are tied for second place at six-under.
After the round, Hart said he has played the course many times and felt the reasonable yardage (6,600 yards) suits him well because he does not hit the ball a long way. He finished with seven birdies and one bogey.
Couples got it to six-under through 12 holes, but he cooled off before making a birdie on the final hole for his 65.
Kenny Perry, Kirk Triplett, Michael Allen, Scott Simpson, and Duffy Waldorf are tied for fifth place at five-under par.
Kenny Perry overpowers Newport Beach Country Club with his length, but he failed to take advantage of a 300+ yard drive on the par-five 18th. Despite a three-putt par on 18, Perry is in prime position heading into the weekend, and remains one of the favorites to win.
Colin Montgomerie, Fred Funk, and Esteban Toledo are among six players tied for tenth place at four-under par.
The weekend forecast is 70s and sunny, so expect more low scores, and a sprint to the finish.
Hall of Fame watch:
1. Bernhard Langer (-8)
T2. Fred Couples (-6)
T10. Colin Montgomerie (-4)
T24. Hale Irwin (-2)
T55. Ben Crenshaw (E)
T55. Tom Watson (E)
T61. Sandy Lyle (1)
80. Curtis Strange (5)