Pat Perez carded a 63 at the Bob Hope Classic in California to set a new 36-hole PGA Tour record of 20-under-par after his opening round of 61 – all with his new TaylorMade R9 driver.

Despite the 32-year-old American’s record-breaking form, he will only take a two-shot lead into round three after compatriot Briny Baird fired a pair of 63s.

Perez was tied-fourth for greens hit in regulation largely due to his length and accuracy off the tee, not to mention some excellent putting.

“Overall I just I played two of the best days I ever have in a row. So I’m hitting my new TaylorMade R9 driver, I’m killing it,” said Perez.  

It was Tom Lehman’s record of 19-uder-par through 36 holes that gave way – a record that has stood since the 2001 Las Vegas Classic.  

World No.1 Tiger Woods, Mark Calcavecchia, Corey Pavin and Carl Pettersson have also posted 36-hole totals of 125 on the PGA Tour.

Meanwhile, Sergio Garcia, who also has the TaylorMade R9 driver in the bag, finished his second round at the Qatar Masters with another two-under-par 70, eight shots back going into the weekend.

Where next?

Tour news: English Open postponed until 2011
Equipment: New TaylorMade R9 range
Industry news: SkyCaddie joins forces with Hank Haney and Jim Furyk