1995 US Open champion Corey Pavin reached the turn in 26 strokes during his opening round at the 2006 US Bank Championship in Milwaukee on Thursday, writing himself a place in the records books for the lowest nine hole score in US PGA Tour history.
Former Ryder Cup star Pavin’s scorching start at the Brown Deer Golf Club eclipsed the previous US PGA Tour best of 27 – held jointly by Mike Souchak (1955), Andy North (1975), Billy Mayfair (2001) and Robert Gamez (2004).
Pavin, who hasn’t won a tournament for ten years, looked a safe bet after nine to also beat the long standing record of 59 for eighteen holes, currently held by Al Geiberger (1977), Chip Beck (1991) and David Duval (1999). However, the 46 year-old American was unable to continue his amazing form, coming back in 35 for a nine under-par total of 61 and a three stroke lead over the rest of the field.
“I hit good shots and converted the putts,” he reflected.
“It was a magical nine and very exciting for me. I was just trying to hit the shots as best I could. You get kind of nervous, obviously, but I was just trying to stay in a good rhythm and walk a good pace.”
“I don’t know if I heard anyone say 59, but they were definitely thinking it,” he said of his bid for the eighteen hole record.
“I’ve felt pretty good about my game for the last couple of years, I just haven’t been able to put it all together for four rounds. I’d like to get back into the winner’s circle someday – that’s my goal.”
Pavin hit sixteen greens in regulation over the entire round and had just twenty-five putts. He is best remembered for his 1995 US Open triumph, and the majestic 4-wood that he fired to five feet on the 72nd hole at Shinnecock Hills – thus enabling him to pip Greg Norman to the title.