US PGA Championship - R1

Brooks Koepka makes flying start as Tiger Woods struggles

May 16-19
Bethpage State Park Black Course, Farmingdale, NY
$11,000,000
Live leaderboard
Round 2, Round 3, Round 4


Defending champion Brooks Koepka equalled the lowest round in tournament history to leave playing partner Tiger Woods trailing in his wake in the US PGA Championship at Bethpage State Park.

Brooks Koepka makes flying start to US PGA Championship as Tiger Woods struggles, © Getty Images
© Getty Images

Koepka carded seven birdies in a flawless opening round of 63 to set a new course record on the fearsome Black Course where Woods was the only player to finish under par in winning the 2002 US Open.

Masters champion Woods had threatened to recover from a nightmare start when he eagled the fourth, his 13th hole of the day, to get under par for the first time, only to drop three shots in the next four holes and finish two over, nine behind Koepka.

“My putter was hot today, I’m not going to lie,” Koepka said after becoming the first player in US PGA history to record multiple rounds of 63 in his career. “It hasn’t felt that good in a long time.

“This is a crazy day, seven under is not going to happen every day, but I parred two par fives and missed a five footer on number 11. It could have been a helluva round, I just need to clean a few things up.”


New Zealand’s Lee was the closest challenger after carding his best round at a Major thanks to a six under 64, with 2017 Race to Dubai Champion Fleetwood the next best after a three under 67. The Englishman came close to winning the U.S. Open at another Long Island venue, Shinnecock Hills, last year but a final round 63 saw him come up just short of winner Koepka.

Mike Lorenzo-Vera, meanwhile, shares fourth place in just his third Major appearance after the Frenchman signed for a two under par 68, and England’s Matt Wallace was the next best European a shot further back on one under.

England’s Tommy Fleetwood, who finished second to Koepka in last year’s US Open at another Long Island venue Shinnecock Hills, was four shots off the lead after recording six birdies and three bogeys in an opening 67.

Read next

WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational R3

Tours
By GT Editor

“It doesn’t always go right, but I enjoy the toughest courses and I enjoy getting in a dogfight out there with the toughest courses in the world,” Fleetwood said.

“It was a little more playable than the practice days have been but overall still a brutal golf course and as soon as you’re out of position, you’re going to struggle. Luckily enough, I hit plenty of good golf shots.”

Starting on the back nine alongside Koepka and Open champion Francesco Molinari, Woods missed the fairway on the 502-yard par-four 10th and could only lay up around 80 yards short of the green.


From there the 43-year-old flew his approach over the green and, after chipping to four feet, missed the bogey putt after Koepka had holed from 40 feet for an unlikely birdie.

Woods steadied the ship with a string of pars before holing from 15 feet for birdie on the 15th, only to three-putt the par-three 17th for another double bogey after his tee shot had plugged in a greenside bunker.

Koepka, who was joint second behind Woods at Augusta National, birdied the 14th and 18th to cover the back nine in 32 and fared even better on the front nine, birdies on the first, third, fifth and ninth giving him a place in the record books.

Woods gave the large crowds something to cheer with birdies on the first and second and an eagle from 30 feet on the fourth, his first in the US PGA since 2001, but three-putted the fifth and seventh and failed to get up and down from the edge of the next.

“I got off to not the best start today, fought my way back and unfortunately let a couple slip away at the end with some bad putts,” said Woods, who was understood to be suffering from a cold when he opted not to practice on Wednesday.

“It could have been a little bit better today and consequently I’m a long way back.”

England’s Matt Wallace had held the early lead after four birdies in his first six holes before having to settle for a 69, one shot better than world number two Justin Rose and Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell.


Pos.
Player
Nat
To Par
R1
1
Brooks Koepka
USA
-7
63
2
Danny Lee
NZL
-6
64
3
Tommy Fleetwood
ENG
-3
67
T4
Michael Lorenzo-Vera
FRA
-2
68
T4
Chez Reavie
USA
-2
68
T4
Luke List
USA
-2
68
T4
Sung-Hoon Kang
KOR
-2
68
T4
Pat Perez
USA
-2
68
T9
Rickie Fowler
USA
-1
69
T9
Matt Wallace
ENG
-1
69
T9
Patrick Cantlay
USA
-1
69
T9
Dustin Johnson
USA
-1
69
T9
Jordan Spieth
USA
-1
69
T9
Jason Day
AUS
-1
69
T9
Phil Mickelson
USA
-1
69
T9
Si-Woo Kim
KOR
-1
69
T17
Patton Kizzire
USA
Par
70
T17
Sam Burns
USA
Par
70
T17
Jason Caron
USA
Par
70
T17
Max Homa
USA
Par
70
T17
David Lipsky
USA
Par
70
T17
Erik Van Rooyen
RSA
Par
70
T17
Jimmy Walker
USA
Par
70
T17
Graeme McDowell
NIR
Par
70
T17
Louis Oosthuizen
RSA
Par
70
T17
Justin Rose
ENG
Par
70
T17
Hideki Matsuyama
JPN
Par
70
T17
Xander Schauffele
USA
Par
70
T17
Aaron Wise
USA
Par
70
T17
Ryan Vermeer
USA
Par
70
T17
Daniel Berger
USA
Par
70
T17
Paul Casey
ENG
Par
70
T17
Billy Horschel
USA
Par
70
T17
Joel Dahmen
USA
Par
70
T17
Tony Finau
USA
Par
70
T17
Gary Woodland
USA
Par
70
T17
Keegan Bradley
USA
Par
70
T17
Jon Rahm
ESP
Par
70
T17
Matt Kuchar
USA
Par
70
T17
Jazz Janewattananond
THA
Par
70
T41
Harold Varner III
USA
1
71
T41
Kyle Stanley
USA
1
71
T41
Adam Scott
AUS
1
71
T41
Kelly Kraft
USA
1
71
T41
Tyrrell Hatton
ENG
1
71
T41
J. B. Holmes
USA
1
71
T41
Lucas Bjerregaard
DNK
1
71
T41
Sung-Jae Im
KOR
1
71
T41
Danny Willett
ENG
1
71
T41
Zach Johnson
USA
1
71
T51
Beau Hossler
USA
2
72
T51
J. J. Spaun
USA
2
72
T51
Scott Piercy
USA
2
72
T51
Adam Hadwin
CAN
2
72
T51
Richy Werenski
USA
2
72
T51
Russell Knox
SCO
2
72
T51
Charles Howell III
USA
2
72
T51
Francesco Molinari
ITA
2
72
T51
Tiger Woods
USA
2
72
T51
Troy Merritt
USA
2
72
T51
Joost Luiten
NED
2
72
T51
Julian Suri
USA
2
72
T51
Marty Jertson
USA
2
72
T51
Cameron Champ
USA
2
72
T51
Lucas Glover
USA
2
72
T51
Ian Poulter
ENG
2
72
T51
Bryson DeChambeau
USA
2
72
T51
Kevin Na
USA
2
72
T51
Rory McIlroy
NIR
2
72
T51
Webb Simpson
USA
2
72
T51
Corey Conners
CAN
2
72
T51
Chesson Hadley
USA
2
72
T51
Tyler Hall
USA
2
72
T74
Charley Hoffman
USA
3
73
T74
Haotong Li
CHN
3
73
T74
Alexander Noren
SWE
3
73
T74
Shaun Norris
RSA
3
73
T74
Abraham Ancer
USA
3
73
T74
Adam Long
USA
3
73
T74
Adrian Otaegui
ESP
3
73
T74
Jason Kokrak
USA
3
73
T74
Branden Grace
RSA
3
73
T74
Ryan Moore
USA
3
73
T74
Thorbjorn Olesen
DEN
3
73
T74
Steve Stricker
USA
3
73
T74
Bronson Burgoon
USA
3
73
T74
Cameron Smith
AUS
3
73
T74
Kevin Tway
USA
3
73
T74
Satoshi Kodaira
JPN
3
73
T74
Jim Furyk
USA
3
73
T91
Ben Cook
USA
4
74
T91
Keith Mitchell
USA
4
74
T91
Thomas Pieters
BEL
4
74
T91
Andrew Putnam
USA
4
74
T91
Brandt Snedeker
USA
4
74
T91
Byeong-Hun An
KOR
4
74
T91
Henrik Stenson
SWE
4
74
T91
Justin Harding
RSA
4
74
T91
Sergio Garcia
ESP
4
74
T91
Patrick Reed
USA
4
74
T91
Brian Mackey
USA
4
74
T91
Shugo Imahira
JPN
4
74
T91
Cory Schneider
USA
4
74
T91
Lucas Herbert
AUS
4
74
T91
Ross Fisher
ENG
4
74
T91
Martin Kaymer
GER
4
74
T91
Ryan Armour
USA
4
74
T91
Marc Leishman
AUS
4
74
T91
Michael Kim
KOR
4
74
T91
Kurt Kitayama
USA
4
74
T91
Mikko Korhonen
FIN
4
74
T112
Rob Labritz
USA
5
75
T112
Richard Sterne
RSA
5
75
T112
Shane Lowry
IRL
5
75
T112
Lee Westwood
ENG
5
75
T112
Martin Trainer
USA
5
75
T112
Joaquin Niemann
CHI
5
75
T112
John Daly
USA
5
75
T112
Matthew Fitzpatrick
ENG
5
75
T112
Rafael Cabrera Bello
ESP
5
75
T112
Rich Beem
USA
5
75
T112
Padraig Harrington
IRL
5
75
T123
Kiradech Aphibarnrat
THA
6
76
T123
Jason Dufner
USA
6
76
T123
Bubba Watson
USA
6
76
T123
Rich Berberian Jr
USA
6
76
T123
Eddie Pepperell
ENG
6
76
T123
Emiliano Grillo
ARG
6
76
T123
Yong-Eun Yang
KOR
6
76
T123
Tom Lewis
ENG
6
76
T123
Jhonattan Vegas
VEN
6
76
T132
J. T. Poston
USA
7
77
T132
Casey Russell
USA
7
77
T132
Justin Bertsch
USA
7
77
T132
Michael Thompson
USA
7
77
T132
Rod Perry
USA
7
77
T132
Ryan Palmer
USA
7
77
T132
Brian Harman
USA
7
77
T132
Alex Beach
USA
7
77
T132
Shaun Micheel
USA
7
77
T132
Kevin Kisner
USA
7
77
T132
Jorge Campillo
ESP
7
77
T132
Dylan Frittelli
RSA
7
77
T144
Brendan Jones
AUS
8
78
T144
Ryan Fox
NZL
8
78
T144
Craig Bowden
USA
8
78
T144
Cheng Tsung Pan
TPE
8
78
T144
Danny Balin
USA
8
78
T149
John O’Leary
USA
9
79
T149
Brandon Stone
RSA
9
79
151
Alexander Bjoerk
SWE
10
80
152
Jeff Schmid
USA
11
81
T153
Stuart Deane
AUS
12
82
T153
Craig Hocknull
AUS
12
82
155
Andrew Filbert
USA
14
84
RET
Brian Gay
USA
Par
81