2022 Mexico Open leaderboard: Jon Rahm joined by 5 others on the high after rounds of 7-under 64

The very best participant within the 2022 Mexico Open seemed the half on Thursday as world No. 2 Jon Rahm opened with a bogey-free 7-under 64. Off within the morning wave, the Spaniard was handled to little-to-no wind and took full benefit.

“Yeah, actually comfy off the tee,” Rahm mentioned. “You are not likely in actual hazard of being in dangerous place, however though it is beneficiant, after I’m hitting photographs the best way with the trajectory and the ball flight that I wished, it simply provides me extra confidence for each different shot. I used to be actually comfy on the market, so it mirrored on the rating.”

Main the sphere in strokes gained: tee-to-green and strokes gained: off-the-tee, Rahm’s enchancment within the short-game division was a welcome sight. Arriving at Vidanta Vallarta 173rd in strokes gained: around-the-green and 132nd in strokes gained: placing on the season, the 27-year-old was in a position to put these troubles to the facet in Spherical 1.

Kick-starting his spherical by holing a greenside chip on the par-3 thirteenth, Rahm capped off his day in an equally spectacular style with an eagle-2 on the par-4 seventh, his sixteenth gap of the day. Connecting on almost 100 toes of putts on Thursday, Rahm ought to really feel comfy with not solely his sport, however together with his probability to boost a trophy for the primary time for the reason that U.S. Open final summer time.

The co-leaders

Rahm will not be the one participant to sit down atop the leaderboard as he’s accompanied by 5 different golfers. Brendon Todd, Trey Mullinax, Jonathan Byrd, Bryson Nimmer and Kurt Kitayama additionally turned in rounds of 7-under 64 to affix the six-time winner on the PGA Tour.

Nimmer gained entry into the event by incomes medalist honors on the open qualifier, one thing Byrd has develop into conversant in the previous couple years. The five-time winner on the PGA Tour returned to Q-College final fall, enjoying his means into the second stage and finals.

“In case you’re enjoying the previous champion class, you may go 5 weeks with out enjoying a event and it is simply arduous to maintain momentum,” Byrd mentioned. “I am on the verge of getting within the subsequent two weeks, which might be 4 in a row, so I am simply form of tickled to simply have extra tournaments to play in. I began the 12 months pondering I’d get in 15, appears to be like like I’d get in additional like 20. I am simply comfortable to have begins.”

Rick Gehman and Jonathan Coachman are on “Tiger Watch” once more as Massive Cat tees it up in Tulsa for a follow spherical at Southern Hills. Observe & hearken to The First Minimize on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

Different contenders

T7: Aaron Sensible, Aaron Rai, Sahith Theegala, Scott Brown (-6)

T11: Sebastian Munoz, Charles Howell III, C.T. Pan, Alex Smalley, Greyson Sigg, Patrick Rodgers, Hayden Buckley, Brandon Hagy, Ryan Blaum, Andrew Novak (-5)

All of these inside the highest 10 are at the moment scheduled to tee off Friday afternoon with the exceptions of Brown and Kitayama. The 38-year-old has performed a number of the greatest golf of his profession in tropical places and sits solely 1-stroke off the lead. The winner of the 2013 Puerto Rico Open, Brown has bounced between the Korn Ferry Tour and PGA Tour this season posting high quality outcomes on the Bermuda Championship, The Bahamas Nice Exuma Traditional and Corales Puntacana Championship.

Not one, however two holes-in-one on the par-3 fifth

In its first public look, the Greg Norman design delivered early and sometimes within the first spherical with two holes-in-one. Off the golf equipment of Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Gutschewski, these at Vidanta Vallarta ought to stay well-hydrated Thursday night time. 

“I imply it was a extremely good quantity, a bit of bit serving to wind and hit it and it seemed actually good within the air and I used to be like wow, I hit that. It was an excellent one.” Gutschewski mentioned. “I did not like chunk it or blade it. Yeah, it seemed good the entire means. I used to be it like wow, that appears actually good.”

The youthful Ortiz leads the house cost

Most informal golf followers could also be unfamiliar with the Mexico Open, but it surely has been round since its first enjoying in 1944. A storied occasion, it has lastly reached the stage of the PGA Tour and boasts 10 Mexicans within the discipline — probably the most ever for a PGA Tour occasion. Surprisingly, it was not Abraham Ancer, or Carlos Ortiz who led the best way for the house devoted on Thursday, however quite, the defending champion, Alvaro Ortiz.

The youthful brother of Carlos, the 26-year-old Alvaro arrived to Vidanta Vallarta having missed 4 consecutive cuts on the Korn Ferry Tour. He grew up on the property as his father was a contractor for Vidanta for 25 years. Feeling at house, Ortiz carded a 3-under 68 to steer all Mexicans and sit in a tie for thirty fourth.

“It is a dream come true that we get to play right here that we have been coming for, man, I do not know the way lengthy. Since I’ve a reminiscence we have been coming right here to Puerto Vallarta,” Alvaro Ortiz mentioned.

Up to date odds and picks

Here is a have a look at the chances after the opening spherical, courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

  • Jon Rahm: 7-4
  • Aaron Sensible: 12-1
  • Brendon Todd: 14-1
  • Aaron Rai: 20-1
  • Kurt Kitayama: 20-1
  • Sebastian Munoz: 22-1
  • Gary Woodland: 22-1
  • Sahith Theegala: 22-1

I solely have curiosity in a single participant from the above listing and that’s Woodland who got here into the Mexico Open in sturdy type and did nothing to show in any other case in Spherical 1. Gaining strokes on the sphere in every tee-to-green metric, Woodland dissatisfied with the flat stick, however was nonetheless in a position to signal for a spherical of 4-under 67 within the afternoon to stay inside attain of the leaders. Tony Finau is one other participant to catch my eye, however after a disappointing even-par 71, a 3-ball play over Abraham Ancer and Kevin Na could be the sound funding for Friday.

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