David Skinns Takes Early Lead at RBC Canadian Open with an Impressive 62

David Skinns surged to the top of the leaderboard with an impressive 8-under 62 in the first round of the RBC Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf and Country Club. The 41-year-old Englishman delivered a stellar performance, highlighted by six birdies in a seven-hole stretch, taking advantage of the receptive greens after earlier rain in the week.

Key Highlights of Skinns’ Round:

  • Birdie Run: Skinns made six birdies in a seven-hole stretch, including a 47-foot birdie putt on the par-3 eighth hole.
  • Course Management: He attributed his success to excellent driving, which left him in favorable positions to attack the pins.
  • Notable Shots: A wedge to 4 feet on the par-4 12th, a 189-yard shot to 2 1/2 feet on the par-4 18th, and a 35-foot putt on the par-4 third hole.

Skinns, who has previously played on PGA TOUR Canada (now PGA TOUR Americas), expressed his fondness for playing in Canada. His familiarity with the country and the course seems to have paid off.

Other Contenders:

  • Sam Burns and Sean O’Hair: Both shot 63 and are just one stroke behind Skinns.
  • Robert MacIntyre: Posted a 64, taking advantage of the afternoon conditions.
  • Ryan Palmer: Opened with a 65, showing strong form.
  • Rory McIlroy: The two-time RBC Canadian Open champion shot 66, tied with Ryan Fox, Andrew Novak, Erik van Rooyen, Nick Hardy, and Trace Crowe.

McIlroy, the defending champion, enjoyed the energetic atmosphere, especially playing alongside Canadian favorites Taylor Pendrith and Nick Taylor.

Defending Champion’s Performance:

  • Nick Taylor: Shot a 72, failing to replicate the magic of his victory last year, where he made an 80-foot eagle putt to win in a playoff.
  • Taylor Pendrith: Also shot a 72, matching Taylor’s score in the first round.

Noteworthy Performances:

  • David Hearn: The low Canadian with a 67, showing that experience can still make a difference.
  • Mike Weir: The 54-year-old shot 68, demonstrating his enduring skill and competitiveness.

Course Conditions and Player Feedback:

The rain earlier in the week left the greens receptive, which the players capitalized on. Sam Burns highlighted the importance of the softer greens, particularly on par-5s where long irons or woods could stop the ball quickly.

Looking Ahead

As the tournament progresses, Skinns will aim to maintain his lead, while notable players like McIlroy and Burns will seek to close the gap. The RBC Canadian Open promises exciting golf and potential surprises, with both seasoned players and rising stars vying for the title.

Stay tuned for more updates as the tournament unfolds.