DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Tim Herron shot a 9-under 63 on Saturday to take a four-stroke lead in the PGA Tour Champions’ Principal Charity Classic.
Trying to win for the first time on the 50-and-over tour, Herron birdied the par-4 18th for a back-nine 30 and 14-under 130 total at Wakonda Club.
“I haven’t been in this situation for probably a decade,” Herron said. “Just go out and play each hole at a time. These guys are good. Someone else can shoot 9 under, so I’ve got to still kind of put the pedal down in the right spots. If I hit the fairway, I’ve got to go at the pin.”
The 51-year-old from Minnesota, a four-time winner on the PGA Tour, birdied three of the first five holes, then birdied Nos. 10-12, 15, 16 and 18 tp pull away.
“I got some really good breaks and I had some really good chances that I missed, but I made some great putts,” Herron said. “This is the most putts I’ve made in probably a decade. Hopefully, just going to keep it going and keep the putting stroke smooth.
He’s playing the event and Wakonda for the first time.
“It’s very hilly and it’s old school, it’s pretty crazy up-and-downs,” Herron said. “It’s what I grew up on. I’m from Minnesota, so it’s kind of the same grass around the greens. I get the feel on the reads.”
Shane Bertsch and Rod Pampling were second after 67s.
Doug Barron was 9 under after a 69.
First-round leader Thongchai Jaidee followed his opening 65 with a 71 to drop into a tie for fifth at 8 under with Mike Weir (66), Tom Gillis (69) and Dicky Pride (70).