Date: January 18, 2007
Author: Sportal

Allenby on fire in California

Sportal Australian Robert Allenby has fired a scorching 9-under 63 to lead the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic at La Quinta Country Club in California. Fellow Aussie Andrew Buckle shot a five-under 67 and Paul Gow is one stroke back after a round of 68. Allenby is two strokes clear of Mark Calcavecchia and Craig Kanada who are tied for second at seven-under. Calcavecchia started slowly but came alive on the back nine as he had six birdies through his final 11 holes. Kanada was mid-pack for most of his round before three consecutive birdies between 14 and 16 fired him up to second. Play was delayed for about an hour due to frost on the course but once underway, the day belonged to Allenby who started with a birdie and never looked back. The 35-year-old posted a further four birdies on the front nine before creating a further four on the back, two of which came from sinking eight metre putts. The official leader board originally had the Victorian as 12-under, but it was soon discovered that a volunteer scorer had it wrong. Fortunately for Allenby, he had been marking his card correctly and the right score was posted soon after. Fellow Australian Nathan Green fired a solid two-under and Mark Hensby posted a round of 71 to sit one-under following the first round. Peter Lonard went around even with the card while John Senden and Stephen Leaney finished one-over. The 90-hole pro-am celebrity tournament is being played over four different courses of varying difficulty, so it&aposs likely that we will see numerous players drop in and out of contention as the tournament progresses. Leading scores after round one of the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic at La Quinta CC, California (par 72): -9: Robert Allenby (Australia) -7: Mark Calcavecchia, Craig Kanada -6: Charley Hoffman, Dudley Hart, Scott Verplank, Matt Kuchar, Jason Gore, Tripp Isenhour -5: Corey Pavin, Shane Bertsch, Anders Hansen, John Rollins, Justin Rose, David Duval, Andrew Buckle (Australia), Bob Heintz, Jason Wagner -4: Steve Flesch, Kevin na Also: -4: Paul Gow -2: Nathan Green (Australia) -1: Mark Hensby (Australia) E: Peter Lonard (Australia) +1: John Senden (Australia), Stephen Leaney (Australia) +2: Steve Elkington (Australia)