Luke Guthrie takes four-shot lead after second round of BMW Masters
Luke Guthrie handled another day of strong wind and kept his distance in the BMW Masters in Shanghai with a one-under 71, giving the American a four-shot lead going into the weekend of his first golf tournament in Asia.
The relentless wind brought a drop in temperatures, yet Guthrie played the round in short sleeves. "I should have looked that up about Shanghai before I came here," he said. "I didn't know what the weather was going to be like. I only have one sweater. I'm wearing blue and pink today, so I'm kind of out there already. I didn't want to put a green sweater on top of it. So I just dealt with being a little cold."
Guthrie never let anyone get closer than two shots at Lake Malaren, and pulled away with a 20-foot birdie that broke three ways on the 17th. But he misjudged the speed of the 18th green on a long chip and narrowly missed a 10-foot par putt on the final hole.
That put him at eight-under 136, four shots clear of six players.
Ricardo Gonzalez did not make a bogey until the final hole and still had a 67, the lowest round of the day in chilly, blustery conditions. Also in a tie for second were Scott Jamieson (68), Paul Casey, Thongchai Jaidee, Craig Lee and Simon Dyson, who each shot 70.
John Daly showed plenty of power, but could not make a putt in his round of 74, which included a double bogey-birdie-bogey finish. He was six shots behind.
Peter Uihlein, who was two shots behind after chipping in for eagle at No7, made six bogeys over his next seven holes. He tried to salvage his round with two later birdies, only to catch a mound short of the 18th that sent his approach into the bunker for one last bogey and a 75. He was at 144.
For two days, Guthrie's first big trip in golf has been more than he could have imagined.
He closed with a 64 in Las Vegas to tie for fifth and flew straight to Shanghai, leaving him just enough time to get over jet lag and see the Jack Nicklaus design.
He received a sponsor's exemption, wanting to broaden his experience and learn to become a global golfer. It's already paying off. The only surprise was playing with Daly and Uihlein, the only other Americans in Shanghai.
Only 18 players in the 77-man field were under par.
Rafa Cabrera-Bello ran off five straight birdies late in his round for a 68, leaving him five shots behind. Ian Poulter got back in the game until two late bogeys forced him to settle for a 69. Poulter was at one-under 143, along with Rory McIlroy, who bogeyed the last for a 72, and Lee Westwood (71).
Graeme McDowell, in his first event since getting married in September, was trying to push his way up the leader board until he bogeyed three of his last five.