While it may not bring out the most exciting names in golf, the CareerBuilder Challenge features an interesting format that makes for some interesting action. The tournament is played over three courses, La Quinta Country Club, Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course and the TPC Stadium course. The field rotates between the courses over the first three days, and the cut is made after 54 holes. The final round is played at the Stadium Course. Phil Mickelson, who won the tournament twice in 2002 and 2004, made his 2017 debut Thursday after a pair of surgeries in the fall of 2016. Playing at La Quinta, Phil shot a 4-under 68-leaving him 4 shots off of the lead, in a round that included a vintage Mickelson chip-in to save par on the 16th hole. Reigning champion Jason Dufner shot a 1-under 71, also at La Quinta. Tour Rookie Domenic Bozzelli fired an 8-under 64 at the Stadium Course, the low round of his career thus far. Bozzelli’s round included a string of three consecutive birdies, as well as an eagle hole out from 110+ yards on the par 4 14th hole. The tournament is also known for its inclusion of amateur golfers playing alongside the pros. This years’ field includes former Chicago Bears and New York Giants kicker Robbie Gould, who shot an 11-under 61, and is currently tied for second among all amateurs.
First round highlights below ↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓
Over on the European Tour, Henrik Stenson leads the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship after round one at 8-under par. Rickie Fowler and Dustin Johnson are both at even par. Fowler, who is the reigning champ, will have to play some impressive golf over the next three rounds in order to catch up and defend his title.