Peter Uihlein made a couple of bold statements Friday at the Dunhill Links Championship -- the first, by nearly holing a 40-foot putt for what would have been the first 59 in European Tour history, and the second, in his choice of colorful, Ian Poulter-like threads for the second round at Kingsbarns Golf Links.
Uihlein, the American son of Acushnet chief executive Wally Uihlein, missed by inches an eagle putt on the par-5 ninth hole (his 18th) that would have made him the only Euro Tour player to card a round in the 50s. Instead, the 24-year-old joined a group of 17 golfers to finish with 60, according to EuropeanTour.com.
Thanks to his near-record score, Uihlein shares third place at 13-under, two shots back of leader Tom Lewis of England. Despite his putt sliding by the hole, Uihlein was rather pleased with his day, which featured a round with four-time major champion Ernie Els.
What an awesome day at one of my favorite courses with one of my favorite players! Just a special day all around. Thanks for the love!!— Peter Uihlein (@PeterUihlein) September 27, 2013
Els recorded a 65 that he quipped seemed as if he "shot 90," compared with his youthful playing partner.
"I knew I needed to make an eagle and I thought I hit a good putt," said Uihlein about his attempt on his final hole. "I thought it would come back to the right but it kept going left.
"Today started off with me hitting it close and not making anything and then I started holing it from everywhere," added Uihlein, who posted a 31 on his outgoing nine and added a second eagle to a barrage of five birdies (eight overall) coming in. "It was just one of those days that went for me."
Across the Atlantic, Jim Furyk posted the sixth 59 in PGA Tour history in the BMW Championship earlier this month, while Phil Mickelson flirted with the magic number twice during the just-ended U.S. season -- in his first round at TPC Scottsdale, and again in the opener of the Deutsche Bank Championship.