Round 1 Notebook: Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn

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June 10, 2011
Phil Stambaugh, Champions Tour Staff

Weather: Sunny and hot with high temperatures in the mid-90s and very light wind from the SW at only 5 mph.

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• After seeing Mike Goodes shoot 8-under 28 on his front nine early in the day on Friday, Bob Tway knew he'd better get going if he wanted to keep pace. Tway did just that, picking up right where he left off at Rock Barn last year by posting a 9-under 63 in the opening round of the 2011 Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn. The round was only good enough for a one-stroke lead over a group of four players including Goodes. Like Goodes, Tway's round including 10 birdies and a run of four in a row to start his back nine. He came to the 18th in a tie for the lead, but managed to get up and down from just short of the green, holing a four-foot birdie putt to break out of the pack. Tway had posted a 10-under 62 in the final round of last year's event, his career-best score since joining the Champions Tour in May, 2009 at the Regions Charity Classic.

• Round 1 Leaderboard: 1) Bob Tway/63 (-9); T2) Tommy Armour III/64 (-8), Mike Goodes/64 (-8), Joe Ozaki/64 (-8), Mark Wiebe/64 (-8); T6) Mark Calcavecchia/65 (-7), David Eger/65 (-7), Mark O'Meara/65 (-7)

• Tway holds sole possession of the lead in a TOUR event for the first time since the 2006 Frys.com Open (T81) on the PGA TOUR. In his Champions Tour career, he's been tied for the first-round lead twice -- 2010 Toshiba Classic, 2010 Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic.

• First-round leaders/co-leaders have gone on to win three of the first 10 official events on the Champions Tour this year. In the previous eight events here in Hickory, only three first-round leaders/co-leaders have gone on to win -- Andy Bean (2006), R.W. Eaks (2007, 2008).

• Goodes' 8-under 28 on the front nine today set a Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn 9-hole record and was just one off the all-time Champions Tour record for nine holes (27 - Jay Sigel, 1998 Bell Atlantic Classic, front nine at Hartefeld National Golf Club, Round 2; Seiji Ebihara, 2002 Senior PGA Championship, front nine at Firestone CC, Round 4). R.W. Eaks (2008, Round 1) and Craig Stadler (2006, Round 3) previously held the front-nine record at Rock Barn with 7-under 29s.

• Goodes' front-nine score of 28 included a run of six birdies (Nos. 4-9) in a row, matching the best birdie streak of the 2011 season (Tom Lehman, Senior PGA Championship, Round 3).

Year Tournament Round Most Sub-Par Rounds
2000 Gold Rush Classic 3 63
2010 Allianz Championship 2 62
2003 JELD-WEN Tradition 3 62

• Of the 81 players in this week's field, there were an all-time record 69 sub-par rounds shot today on the Jones course at Rock Barn. Since records were first kept on the Champions Tour in 1983. here are the previous-best sub-par numbers for any round on the Champions Tour in a 54-hole event.

• 16 players had bogey-free rounds today -- Mark Calcavecchia, Mark O'Meara, Jerry Pate, Jeff Sluman, Vicente Fernandez, David Peoples, Steve Pate, James Mason, Nick Price, Loren Roberts, D.A. Weibring, Hal Sutton, Jim Gallagher, Jr., Mark McNulty, Lee Rinker and Peter Senior. Last year, eight different players had bogey-free opening rounds at this event.

• With virtually no wind and soft greens, the field scoring average today was 69.099, the lowest in tournament history for any round and the lowest for a full-field event on the Champions Tour since the all-time record of 68.051 was established in Round 3 at the par-70 Moors Golf Club during the 2005 Blue Angels Classic. The previous low for any round at the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn was 70.295 in Round 1 of the 2009 event. Last year, only 48 players in the field posted rounds below par on Friday and the field stroke average was 71.154.

Andy Bean, Bruce Fleisher, Tom Jenkins, Walter Hall, Larry Nelson, David Eger, John Harris and Bobby Wadkins all made the ninth consecutive appearance in the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn today, the only players who have appeared in every event since the tournament started in 2003.

• Defending champion Gary Hallberg had a tough day, shooting 1-over 73 today.

• Warren Jurkowitz, an open qualifier from Aventura, Fla., shot 1-under 71 in his Champions Tour debut today.

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