Cameron Tringale shot a course record equalling round of 61 to lead a star-studded field – which includes 14 of the top 15 players in the world – after round one of the Genesis Scottish Open.
The American took advantage of kind early conditions when he teed off in the third Rolex Series event of 2022 – the first tournament to be co-sanctioned by the DP World Tour and PGA TOUR – and was three shots clear of his closest challenger, Major winner Gary Woodland, at the end of an entertaining day.
After four straight pars to settle himself in, Tringale birdied nine of the next 11 holes. Every part of his game seemed to be working as he was in close with most of his approaches and when he was not, a 38-footer dropped at the eighth and another long one found the bottom of the cup at the 11th, before he closed his bogey-free nine under round with three pars.
Justin Harding sits in third place, four off the lead, while three players – Rasmus Højgaard, Mito Pereira and Kurt Kitayama – are one shot further back on four under.
Ewen Ferguson is the leading Scot alongside seven other players on three under par, with Major winners Jon Rahm, Jordan Spieth and Justin Rose amongst the group at two under par.
Cameron Tringale: “Golf is more fun when the putts are going in, and they were for me today. I had a great group of guys to play with and it was relaxed. Everyone more or less had some good shots, and the vibe was good in our group no doubt.
“I think I’m pretty creative when it comes to the shots around the greens and being able to visualise and imagine shots that are not traditional for us in the States. I just think it’s so much fun to have that kind of optionality and to have fun with those shots. There’s probably five ways you can play most shots. It’s fun to be an artist out here. In that respect, I like my chances here.
“Hard to learn when you have such a great day by I definitely learned the last couple days just how strong the wind is, like how much it’s moving the ball, particularly side-to-side and the crosswinds. So that was one thing that I was able to navigate pretty well today. Obviously continue to hope to do more of that.
“Honestly it feels good. I wasn’t thinking about my score. Wasn’t thinking about where I was in the tournament. Like I said, I got off to a slow start. I had to make a couple ten footers for par in the first few holes. I was just focused on playing my game.”
Gary Woodland: “I played beautifully, drove the golf ball great. Kept it in play. Pace, speed of the greens for me was as good as my face has ever been. Big emphasis this week on trying to get more familiar with that, especially for next week.
“I think the big deal is the pace of greens. They are usually typically so fast back home and over here you can’t get them that fast with the conditions.
“I’ve struggled coming over here. I played the Scottish once before, 2011, so it’s been a long time. But it’s nice to get over here and get familiar with the speed of the greens. That will be a big deal next week as well.
“Yesterday was brutal. Yesterday was a nice Scottish day with cold, windy, rainy — but today, the golf course is perfect. I drove the golf ball in the fairway, and that’s huge out here. There’s some tough driving holes. You’ve got to keep it in play. I did that today, and I gave myself a chance to be a little more aggressive into the green.”
Justin Harding: “Good. Quite pleased, actually. Obviously got off to an early start and played solid. I mean, felt like I managed my game pretty well. Look, it wasn’t short of a couple bad shots but I saved myself with the putter. The putter was solid, and yeah, I’m happy with it.
“It’s one of those golf courses that I funny enough have played it terribly over the years. I don’t think I’ve made a cut around here. So it seems to be getting progressively better and happy to have obviously kept a bogey off the card today. Yeah, see what happens tomorrow and see what tomorrow brings.”
Jon Rahm: “I’m happy with it. Obviously that six over there, that’s the one thing I wish I could have limited. I got really lucky, stayed short of the bunker, wasn’t an easy shot but first thing was getting it over the lip and that was a mistake. If I make a bogey, 67 is a really good round of golf. 68 is good, it’s just that six could have been avoided.
“You’ve got to control your spin a lot better. A lot of times we play tour in the U.S. even though it’s windy, you need to, the speed of the greens and how far you can hit it. Out here you can get more distance off the tee, and then coming into the green, you can avoid and you can use certain slopes and certain shots to get it close to the pin.
“There are a couple shots on the last few holes with short irons, I left myself a little bit too short. You’ve just got to be in control of the trajectory, right, pulling the right club and being committed to the shot.
“It’s good. I think everybody’s happy to be here. You have a lot more U.S. players than maybe wouldn’t have come and wouldn’t have had an opportunity, so it’s good to see them.”