Round 1 Notes: Montreal Championship

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July 01, 2011
Dave Senko, Champions Tour staff

Weather: A mix of sun and clouds with highs in the mid-to-upper 70s. Winds were from the NNW at 5-10 mph. John Huston and John Cook each matched the tournament scoring record on Friday, crafting 9-under-par 63s to grab a share of the first-round lead. D.A. Weibring had set the record in the second round last year.

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John Huston and John Cook were part of a threesome that posted 27 birdies for the day. Huston and Cook each had 10 birdies, while Tom Lehman, the third member of the group, had seven on his way to a 5-under-par 67. Both Huston and Cook had impressive runs in their rounds. Cook birdied six of his first seven holes, while Huston finished with five consecutive birdies.

John Cook's 9-under-par 63 was one shy of his career best round on the Champions Tour (62 at the 2009 Charles Schwab Cup Championship/2nd round) but it did match his best opening round in a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event. Cook had a 63 (8-under-par) 26 years ago in the opening round of the 1985 Pensacola Open (10/20/85).

• This marks the second straight year John Cook has turned in a strong performance at the Montreal Championship. He was the 36-hole leader a year ago before finishing second, one stroke behind Larry Mize when Mize closed with an 8-under-par 64.

• The field matched the Champions Tour mark for sub-par rounds in a round when 69 of 79 players finished with rounds under par on Friday. It came just three weeks after 69 players finished under par in the opening round at the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn. Overall, the field averaged 68.911 in today's round. It was the lowest scoring average in an opening round since the 2005 Blue Angels Classic (68.346/par 70).

• The field posted 369 birdies and six eagles in the opening round.

• Defending champion Larry Mize finished with a flurry on Friday, making birdies on four of his final five holes to shoot a 7-under-par 65 and he is currently T3. Mize had just 11 one-putts over his final nine holes.

Corey Pavin was the only player to score a "hat trick" in the opening round, making birdies on the final three holes. The final three holes were given that moniker a year ago. Pavin shot a 6-under-par 66.

Jeff Sluman, Dan Forsman, Chien soon Lu, R.W. Eaks, Jay Don Blake, Bill Glasson, Mark Brooks, Eduardo Romero, Steve Lowery, David Eger, Roger Chapman, Morris Hatalsky and Tim Simpson all enjoyed bogey-free rounds.

Corey Pavin and Larry Mize all had 11 one-putts on Friday. Pavin one-putted seven of his final nine holes and finished with 11 putts on his back nine.

• Steve Lowery had the day's long drive, a 332-yarder at No. 11.

Rod Spittle and Jim Rutledge are the top Canadian players after the opening round. The two were T34. Yvan Beauchemin was T60 and Daniel Talbot was T70.

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