While the leader fired a 13-under-par 57 on Thursday, Aldrich Potgieter started well with a five-under-par 66 in the opening round of the Lorn Ferry Tour’s Astara Golf Championship at Country Club de Bogota-Lagos and Country Club de Bogota-Pacos in Bogota, Colombia.
Potgieter, who played on the par-71 Pacos course, found himself eight shots off the lead which was held by Cristobal Del Solar of Chile, who carded the lowest round ever in a PGA Tour-connected tournament. Two eagles and nine birdies on the par-70 Lagos course put Del Solar four strokes clear of Americans Brian Campbell and Michael Johnson.
Potgieter started his round with a bogey, but he soon rectified that with three birdies on the front nine to help him turn in two-under-par 33. Three birdies in a row after the turn from the 10th seemed to suggest he might be on his way to an even lower score, but successive bogeys immediately after that on 13 and 14 set him back. He grabbed those shots back with birdies on 17 and 18.
The previous best 18-hole score in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event was 58 by Jim Furyk on the PGA Tour (2016 Travelers Championship) and Stephen Jaeger on the Korn Ferry Tour (2016 Ellie Mae Classic).
“Incredible, man,” said Del Solar of his achievement. “Honestly, I was just playing. I didn’t even know what I was at. I asked my caddie on the 18th after hitting my 18th tee shot, we were just walking and I told him, am I going to break 60, because I’ve never broken 60 before. He said you’re going to break a little bit more than 60.
“I played really good golf. I drove the ball well, chipped well and putted well. Yeah, I mean, I’m happy. It was a great round.”