Austin Smotherman takes opening lead

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Mexico Open at Vidanta R1
Posted on
April 28, 2023
by
The Editorial Team in ,
Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Austin Smotherman birdied his final four holes,Nos. 6-9, to card a bogey-free 8-under 63 on Thursday and take a one-shot lead in the Mexico Open at Vidanta.

"Just super steady. I made a few of those 10-, 12-footers middle part of the round, or that early part of the round. Middle part of the round it's not like I didn't have any good looks, some putts just didn't drop and some tougher holes in there as well which you're fine making 3s. The one I kind of felt let slip away was hitting that tee ball left on 18, having to lay up and then leaving myself 15 feet instead of being able to go for that green in two, that would have been that one in the middle just to kind of keep me on pace."

The American's best finish in 43 career starts entering the week is a solo eighth at the 2022 Barracuda Championship.

Smotherman won the event in 2018, it was held in Tijuana that year, when it was a PGA TOUR Latinoamerica event. The Mexico Open dates back to 1944 and among the past champions are Ben Crenshaw, Billy Casper and Lee Trevino.

“I mean, still get a little bit of some goosebumps thinking about it, for sure. Just the reception, winning an event like that, the Mexico Open, which has such a deep history. There are names on that trophy that are in the Hall of Fame and what it kind of means down here, a national open anywhere is very special.

"To have my name on a trophy like that, I mean the trophy's not small by any size either, so I think just having to kneel down, take some photos with all the people after the round is one of the memories I remember because lifting that thing's not easy.”

South Africa's Erik van Rooyen tied his lowest opening-round score with a 64 for a share of second place alongside PGA Tour rookie Tano Goya from Argentina, who stayed bogey-free in his lowest round of the season.

Mexico’s Raul Pereda posted a 65 in his PGA Tour debut as a sponsor exemption and sits in fourth place alongside Germany's Stephan Jaeger, Canada's Taylor Pendrith and Americans Eric Cole and Tony Finau.

"I just think more than the score I'm proud I was able to stay very present shot by shot," said Pereda. "My coach, my old coach from [Jacksonville University] just told me just enjoy shot by shot, and sometimes it sounds easier said than getting it done. I was just able to stay in the present and give myself opportunities and roll it very good today."

Defending champion and World No. 1 Jon Rahm played his first four holes in 1-over before rallying to post 4-under 67 and sits in T14.

Pos.PlayerTo ParR1
1Austin Smotherman-863
T2Erik van Rooyen-764
T2Tano Goya-764
T4Stephan Jaeger-665
T4Eric Cole-665
T4Taylor Pendrith-665
T4Raul Pereda-665
T4Tony Finau-665
T9Richy Werenski-566
T9Austin Cook-566
T9Sean O'Hair-566
T9Brandon Wu-566
T9Scott Harrington-566
T14Jon Rahm-467
T14Gary Woodland-467
T14Matt Wallace-467
T14Beau Hossler-467
T14Ben Taylor-467
T14Carson Young-467
T14Harry Hall-467
T14Kevin Roy-467
T14Trevor Werbylo-467
T14Vincent Norrman-467
T14Jimmy Walker-467
T14Andrew Novak-467
T14Andrew Putnam-467
T14James Hahn-467
T14Will Gordon-467
T14Sebastián Vázquez-467
T14Nicolai Hojgaard-467
T31Grayson Murray-368
T31Michael Kim-368
T31Emiliano Grillo-368
T31Mark Hubbard-368
T31Derek Ernst-368
T31Garrick Higgo-368
T31Cody Gribble-368
T31Dylan Wu-368
T31Akshay Bhatia-368
T31Cristobal Del Solar-368
T31Joseph Bramlett-368
T31Lanto Griffin-368
T31Maverick McNealy-368
T31Cameron Champ-368
T31Chez Reavie-368
T31Francesco Molinari-368
T31Brice Garnett-368
T31Ben Martin-368
T31Matti Schmid-368
T50Sung Kang-269
T50S.H. Kim-269
T50Martin Laird-269
T50Nate Lashley-269
T50Jonathan Byrd-269
T50Callum Tarren-269
T50Kevin Streelman-269
T50Ryan Gerard-269
T50José Toledo-269
T50Zecheng Dou-269
T50Bill Haas-269
T50Nico Echavarria-269
T50Brent Grant-269
T50Carl Yuan-269
T50Alejandro Tosti-269
T65Harry Higgs-170
T65Robby Shelton-170
T65Alex Noren-170
T65Doc Redman-170
T65Cameron Percy-170
T65Patrick Rodgers-170
T65Byeong Hun An-170
T65Adam Long-170
T65Geoff Ogilvy-170
T65J.B. Holmes-170
T65Arjun Atwal-170
T65Richard S. Johnson-170
T65Patton Kizzire-170
T65Aaron Baddeley-170
T65Trevor Cone-170
T65Derek Lamely-170
T81Greg ChalmersPar71
T81D.J. TrahanPar71
T81Jonas BlixtPar71
T81Wesley BryanPar71
T81Martin TrainerPar71
T81Lucas GloverPar71
T81Nick WatneyPar71
T81D.A. PointsPar71
T81Ben CranePar71
T81Tommy GaineyPar71
T81Kyle WestmorelandPar71
T81Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira(a)Par71
T81Camilo VillegasPar71
T81David LipskyPar71
T81Charley HoffmanPar71
T81S.Y. NohPar71
T81Augusto NúñezPar71
T81Aaron RaiPar71
T81Alvaro OrtizPar71
T100Doug Ghim+172
T100Fabián Gómez+172
T100Scott Brown+172
T100Ryan Armour+172
T100Jose Cristobal Islas(a)+172
T100Greyson Sigg+172
T100Lee Hodges+172
T100Kevin Tway+172
T100Matthias Schwab+172
T100Kevin Chappell+172
T100Scott Piercy+172
T100Harrison Endycott+172
T100Austin Eckroat+172
T100Zach Bauchou+172
T114Hank Lebioda+273
T114Wyndham Clark+273
T114Paul Haley II+273
T114Kelly Kraft+273
T114Ryan Moore+273
T114Brandon Matthews+273
T114Ted Potter, Jr.+273
T114Kyle Stanley+273
T114José de Jesús Rodríguez+273
T123Peter Malnati+374
T123Brian Stuard+374
T123Luke List+374
T123Brian Davis+374
T123Tyson Alexander+374
T123Kyle Reifers+374
T123Michael Gligic+374
T123Omar Morales(a)+374
T131Max McGreevy+475
T131William McGirt+475
T131Chris Stroud+475
T131Henrik Norlander+475
T131Satoshi Kodaira+475
T136Kevin Stadler+576
T136George McNeill+576
T138Alex Smalley+677
T138Roberto Lebrija+677
T138MJ Daffue+677
T141Boo Weekley+778
T141Dylan Frittelli+778
T141Ricky Barnes+778
144Steve Jurgensen+879
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Mexico Open at Vidanta 2023

Date: April 27th - 30th 2023

Location: Vidanta Vallarta, Vallarta, Mexico

Purse: $7,700,000

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