Simpson leads by a shot at Firestone; Woods trails by two
The Associated Press
AKRON, Ohio — So much for course knowledge.
Webb Simpson, playing his first competitive round at Firestone Country Club, shot a 6-under 64 on Thursday to take a one-stroke lead in the Bridgestone Invitational.
It all came down to trust.
“Well, I knew it all through my caddie (Paul Tesori), who’s been here so many years,” Simpson said. “I just kind of had to listen to him.”
Tesori has caddied for years on tour, for Vijay Singh and Jerry Kelly, in addition to being a pro himself.
“It’s hard for us players to listen to our caddies, but he basically showed me where to go yesterday and told me where to hit it, where the lines were, what clubs to hit,” said Simpson, the 2012 U.S. Open champion. “I didn’t feel like it was my first time because he has so much experience here.”
Seven-time Bridgestone winner Tiger Woods did not have to rely so much on the man on his bag, Joe LaCava, while shooting a 66. Woods has 11 top-10 finishes in his 13 starts at the course, so he clearly knows where to go.
“I hit a lot of good shots. I had a really good feel for the distance today, and Joey and I really read the wind right today,” Woods said after his best opening round at the course since another 66 spurred him to a one-shot victory in 2005.
Henrik Stenson was alone in second with a 65. Defending champion Keegan Bradley, Puyallup’s Ryan Moore and Chris Wood, another first-time entrant, matched Woods at 66.
Park 3 back in Women’s British
ST. ANDREWS, Scotland — Inbee Park looked calm, but admitted she was nervous after her 3-under 69 in the first round of the Women’s British Open at St. Andrews where she will try win an unprecedented fourth straight major in one year.
Park wound up three shots behind Morgan Pressel and Camilla Lennarth.
Her pursuit of history looked more like a high-speed chase when the 25-year-old South Korean made six birdies in 10 holes. Three poor tee shots, two three-putt bogeys and one double bogey on the back nine made her realize there’s a reason no golfer has ever won four majors in a single year.
• Josh Teater took the first-round lead in the Reno-Tahoe Open, scoring five points with an eagle on the par-5 eighth hole and finishing with 15 in the modified Stableford event.
Gary Woodland and James Driscoll were a point back. Former UW Husky Chris Williams was tied for 12th with nine and another ex-Husky, Richard H. Lee, was tied for 27th with six. Seattle’s Jeff Gove was tied for 66th with two and Olympia’s Andres Gonzales was tied for 128th with minus-5.