Taylor Moore and Peter Kuest set the pace at the Rocket Mortgage Classic, both firing impressive 8-under 64s in the first round. The leaderboard promises an exciting competition, with several players hot on their heels. Dylan Wu stole the show with a rare albatross, the third of the PGA TOUR season, and posted a 65 alongside Sam Ryder, Aaron Rai, Ludvig Aberg, Sam Bennett, Justin Suh, and Adam Schenk.
Collin Morikawa, a top contender, sits just two shots behind, while Rickie Fowler trails by three strokes at Detroit Golf Club. While many players took full advantage of the favorable conditions on the relatively easy course, some notable names are not in contention for the lead. Max Homa carded a solid 3-under 69, while Sungjae Im finished one stroke better.
Defending champion Tony Finau, who triumphed with a score of 26 under last year, struggled to find his rhythm and posted a 72. Major champions Hideki Matsuyama and Justin Thomas are also in jeopardy of missing the cut. Matsuyama struggled to a 75, while Thomas fared one shot worse, recording a double bogey and five bogeys. Currently ranked 66th in the FedExCup standings, Thomas, who claimed his second PGA Championship title last year, risks missing the FedExCup Playoffs, which only include the top 70 players. Thomas, who recently dropped out of the top 10 in the world rankings for the first time in nearly six years, missed the cut in two of his last three tournaments.
Wu stole the show with a remarkable albatross, sinking his hybrid from 262 yards on the 570-yard, par-5 14th hole. The shot created a roar from the crowd, although Wu himself couldn't witness it due to the hazy conditions. He also added an eagle on the 16th hole, a par-5 7th, to cap off an impressive round.
Kuest, a 25-year-old former BYU player who turned pro in 2020, showcased his skills in his 10th PGA TOUR event. Opting for golf over a day of fishing on a Utah river, Kuest recorded nine birdies and a solitary bogey to make his mark on the leaderboard.
Moore, 29, also had an outstanding round, carding eight birdies without dropping a shot. The duo's stellar performances have set a high standard for the rest of the tournament, promising an exhilarating battle for the Rocket Mortgage Classic title.