Greg Chalmers has experienced many highs in a long and successful golf career, but even the 47-year-old Australian couldn't have imagined the exhilarating ride he was about to embark on at the Grand Reserve.
Chalmers experienced it all on Thursday in the opening round of the PGA Tour's Puerto Rico Open, where he shot a six-under 66 to be one behind leader Tommy Gainey.
He went on a four-hole birdie blitz starting on the 2nd, then had a hole-in-one on the 8th – the second of his career remarkably at the same course – before carding a double bogey on the 12th.
Chalmers then dusted himself off the canvas to birdie the 13th before making another on the 17th.
"I had a nice little eight-footer to give me confidence on the 1st for par and then honestly, for the next sort of seven holes after that I played really, really some of the best golf I have played in a long time," he said.
"Wasn't so much the same on the back nine, but then that culminated with a hole-in-one on No.8, which actually is my second hole-in-one at this venue.
"I played really, really some of the best golf I have played in a long time." – Greg Chalmers
"Anyway, so I have had two hole-in-ones here now. And it's always kind of a shock at the time, but I'm really pleased with the round."
Now residing in Perth, Chalmers said he enjoys playing at Grand Reserve with conditions similar to his home course Royal Fremantle.
"I grew up in Perth. It's the third windiest city in the world. So I'm used to playing in the wind.
"I enjoy moving the ball around and control, trying to keep it down. And that's how I like to play. If the wind is blowing, I'm okay with it."
Chalmers, a PGA Tour winner who also tied for fourth at the US PGA Championship in 2000, is in a seven-man posse chasing Gainey.
One behind him is compatriot Cameron Percy, who had seven birdies and two bogeys.
Aaron Baddeley and John Senden are also in contention, shooting two-under 70s.
Gainey birdied five of the last seven holes to earn the outright lead.
The tournament is being played opposite the World Golf Championship event in Florida. The winner will get into the US PGA Championship in May but not the Masters in April.
- Mohen Govender, Associated Press