CROMWELL, Conn. — Marc Leishman termed TPC River Highlands “as gettable as I have at any time observed this place.’’
Properly, Mackenzie Hughes went out and acquired it in Thursday’s opening spherical of the Travelers Championship.
The 29-calendar year-old Canadian established a scorching speed taking part in in the morning wave of tee instances, publishing a 10-below 60 to consider a three-shot guide into Friday’s second round.
In the span of a day, the discuss close to the Travelers went from the Wednesday withdrawals of Brooks Koepka and his brother Chase, Webb Simpson and Graeme McDowell since of COVID-19-associated problems to Hughes’ might and a 59 watch.
Hughes, who commenced his spherical on the 10th hole, shot a 29 on his opening 9 (the again) and had a seem at 59 with a birdie putt on No. 9, his last hole, but still left it limited.
Nonetheless, his 60, which incorporated 10 birdies and no bogeys, was good plenty of for a a few-shot direct over Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele and Viktor Hovland and a four-shot guide around several players, together with Phil Mickelson and Sergio Garcia.
For skilled golfers, 59 is a magical range — like breaking the four-minute mile barrier is for a runner.
“That 1 shot means a great deal additional than 61 to 60,’’ Hughes said. “That’s a big leap. I form of joked walking off there that 59 wasn’t even the record due to the fact Jim [Furyk’s] 58 [in the 2016 Travelers]. I imply,  is in all probability not even that unique around listed here. But for a individual milestone, it would have been actually, really neat. You just really do not get pretty quite a few odds in your daily life to do it.
“But … you’d choose 60 just about every day and operate.’’
Particularly when it arrives four times soon after he shot 18 pictures greater with his 78 in the last round of the RBC Heritage Championship on Sunday to end next-to-last.
“I in fact felt really fantastic on Sunday at Harbour City and was enjoying nicely in excess of there and … for what ever purpose it’s one of those people days where you’re variety of shoveling [expletive] uphill and absolutely nothing is heading correct,’’ Hughes claimed. “I don’t really know what to set a finger on it for. It is just one particular of those people points that golfing does occasionally. No distinction genuinely from Sunday to right here. Just 18 photographs.’’
And a three-shot guide.