The first event in the US PGA Tour playoffs for the FedEx Cup got off to a soggy start with a three hour rain delay meaning 51 of the 125 starters failed to finish their rounds.
That could be the least of worries for organisers with Hurricane Irene possibly bearing down on the area. The weather is predicted as fine for day two but after that things could get hairy.
The Barclays is the first of four playoff events in the next five weeks that culminates with the last man standing taking home golf’s richest purse – US$10 million.
America’s Harrison Frazer opened on an already soggy course with a 7-under 64 at the Plainfield Country Club in Edison, New Jersey.
Matt Kuchar (16 holes) and the final qualifier William McGirt (11 holes) joined him on 7-under while Vijay Singh, Jonathan Byrd, Chris Stroud (13 holes) were a shot back on 6-under.
Adam Scott leads the contingent of 12 Aussie players after a 5-under 66 with Jason Day a shot back after 18.
Robert Allenby is also at 4-under after 17 holes and Aaron Baddeley on the same mark after 13.
Marc Leishman and Geoff Ogilvy are on 2-under, Greg Chalmers 1-under, John Senden, Rod Pampling and Nick O’Hern 1-over, Steven Bowditch 4 over and Stuart Appleby with a shocker on the back was 10-over.
Organisers will play catch-up on Friday (US time) and hope the Irene threat doesn’t materialise after that.
“[It] turned into a pretty long day today, but it’s a good start. 5-under around here,” Scott said after the rain delay hit the middle of his round. “I’m surprised generally by how good the scoring is. But I guess with the little bit of rain it softened it back up, and I think the pins were quite accessible today. It would be interesting to see how the rest of the week pans out for a lot of reasons, but very happy to start this way.”
Plainfield has already had about 10 inches of rain over the last few weeks and probably can’t take much more.
“If we get five or seven inches of rain here, we are probably dead in the water,” Slugger White, the Tour’s vice president of competition said.