Ricky Barnes stormed around the rain-soaked TPC Louisiana course, splashing his way to an amazing -8 under par round of 64 and topping the leaderboard at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.
Ricky Barnes / Graythen / Getty Images
Ricky spoke about his amazing stress free round, which included an Eagle, seven birdies and one bogey. Even more amazing is that Ricky did not arrive in New Orleans until late Wednesday afternoon, after the wonderful event of the birth of his daughter on Monday night. Ricky got his round started with the eagle at the par five second hole;
” That kind of got the round going, I was 3 under and those are the kind of starts I need. Today it was nice because it was a pretty stress-free round, I only had to chip once in eighteen holes so that’s nice. If you watch a lot of guys that putt cross-hand, their shoulders are able to stay very level. It’s a good way of getting the feeling of hitting down on the ball.”
Boo Weekley and Lucas Glover are tied in second place, both with rounds of -7 under par, 65. Boo said it could have been even better if he had got some putts to drop early on in the round;
“It was good. It could have gotten real good if some of them putts would have fallen early in the round. I left at least four on the front side that were good birdie putts. I had good looks at them.”
Lucas got off to a flier, with birdies at his first four holes, playing the back nine first;
“Any time you can climb up the board in the afternoon, it feels pretty good. I hit it like I’ve been hitting it and finally putted well.”
Guan Tianlang, the 14-year-old Chinese amateur opened his account here with an opening round of even-par 72, it was highlighted by a 5-wood approach shot that he hit to within a foot of the pin on the par-3 17th hole. He was pretty happy with the way he played, and is currently tied in 85th place, eight shots off the lead;
” I played pretty good golf, not the best but I made some ups and downs and a couple birdies.”
The weather once again this year played a major part in the opening round of this tournament, heavy rains spawned at least two tornadoes in the New Orleans area on Wednesday and left the TPC Louisiana course and it’s normally firm greens, soft and defenseless. Players have been given the option to lift, clean and place their golf balls in the fairways. This ruling especially benefited the later players of the day after an early morning mist gave way to beautiful and ideal sunny scoring conditions.