Kevin Tway shot a 7-in-a-side 66 on Thursday to get a lead of one shot after the first round of the tournament of the champions in Maui, Hawaii.
Tway, who won the season opener Safeway Open in October for his first victory in the PGA Tour and a berth in the Tournament of Champions, won five birdies and made the turn in 31 shots. He then rolled in another two birdies on the back nine to complete a bogey-free card in windy conditions at the Par-73 Plantation Course at Kapalua Resort.
The defending champion Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas and Gary Woodland were one shot back after recording the 67s on Thursday. Johnson was 4-under on par-5s of the race, with the only blot on his scorecard a bogey at number 6 who came after he had driven the ball into the thick grass and had to cut the ball out.
Marc Leishman was only in fifth place on 5-under. Another review was a group of players who were Jason Day, Rory McIlroy – who played the event for the first time – Bryson DeChambeau, Andrew Landry, Patton Kizzire and Andrew Putnam.
DeChambeau was one of the stories of the day, using a new rule that allows players to keep the pin in the hole while standing on the pit surface. DeChambeau opted for countless holes.
Tway is the son of the eight-time PGA Tour winner Bob Tway and recalls the Plantation Course to help his father prepare for the event in 2004. And he needed all the knowledge he needed could get after a while after a while withdraw from the pro-am of Wednesday after only a few holes because of an ear and forehead infection.
"When you make a lot of birdies, it makes everything better," said Tway after the Thursday round. "I was just trying to drink a lot of water, but I did not think I would play so well, to be honest."
He added: "I hit the ball well, kept the ball in the game, made a few putts, controlled my ball in the wind.
"It's windy where I come from in Oklahoma, so it's like I was at home. Every stroke is difficult, so you are only focused on the route and where I have to land it and where I have to miss it. "