LEADERBOARD –9 Tringale; -6 Woodland; -5 Harding, Kitayama; -4 R. Hojgaard, Pereira SELECTED OTHERS –3 Ferguson; -2 Knox, Rahm, C. Smith, Spieth, Syme; E Fitzpatrick; +1 Morikawa, Thomas; +3 Scheffler, MacIntyre; +7 Lee.
Cameron Tringale’s course-record-equalling 61 was the story of the day as the Genesis Scottish Open began in style at the Renaissance Club.
Tringale made the most of the fortuitous draw which handed him an early tee time, shooting nine-under to race clear of the field.
In no small part down to a stunning run of six birdies in as many holes after the turn, Tringale’s display was as close to perfection as we are likely to see on the East Lothian links this week.
Now he is aiming to convert it into a first solo professional win in the first Scottish Open to be co-sanctioned by both the PGA and DP World tours.
“It was a lot of fun,” Tringale said following his round.
“I was really hot with the putter and my ball-striking matched. I gave myself loads of chances and they all seemed to find the hole.
“I’ve played [links golf] a few times so I’m not a total newbie. I just love links golf and coming over to this side of the pond.
“I didn’t really have any expectations. I just love being here and soaking it all up.
“I’ve had some flashes of brilliance in the last couple of months. This was a special day for sure.
“I haven’t had a win on my own and Scotland is where golf all started.”
The top of the leaderboard was comprised almost entirely of those who were out early, who had been able to capitalise on calmer conditions before the wind picked up in the afternoon.
Former US Open winner Gary Woodland was Tringale’s closest challenger on six-under. Justin Harding – who very nearly was unable to play but was handed a reprieve as one of the four LIV golfers whose bans were overturned in court – was one further back.
Ewen Ferguson was the pick of the home favourites on three-under, with Connor Syme and Russell Knox one further back. Robert MacIntyre started well but then endured a mid-round slump from which he was unable to recover and eventually finished three-over.
Thursday at Renaissance, however, was all about Tringale, whose wonderful round has set him on course for his best shot yet at a maiden victory.