Langer Flirts with 59 in ACE Group Classic

Bernard Langer fired a 10-under 62 to take a three-stroke lead after one round of the 54-hole ACE Group Classic. The $1.6 million Champions Tour event began Friday at the Talons Course at Twin Eagles Golf Club in Naples, Fla.

The 55-year-old German carded eight birdies and an eagle on the par-4 10th hole when his 9-iron from 141 yards struck the pin and found the cup. The World Golf Hall of Fame member is three shots ahead of Bob Tway and four in front of Tom Pernice Jr., Jay Don Blake and John Huston.

Langer wasn't sure what happened when his approach on No. 10 ended up in the hole. "Just heard a lot of noise when it hit the flag and cup," he told reporters. "Sometimes they bounce out and go all over the place, but this one stayed in, so that was nice."

Langer noted later that, after opening with four straight pars, he wasn't too worried. "It was just a matter of being patient, and it can happen in golf," he said.

He was in position to shoot a magical 59 but needed an eagle on the par-5 17th - a score he'd gotten all three times he played the hole last year - and a birdie on the par-4 closer.

"I was thinking even though it's wet and the course is playing much longer, if I really hit a great tee shot down there, might get there (in two) with a 3-wood, but slightly mis-hit my tee shot, and that was just about 10 yards too far away to go for it," he said of his strategy on the penultimate hole.

Chien Soon Lu, Fred Funk, Mark Wiebe and Mark O'Meara all carded 67s, while 10 players - including defending champion Kenny Perry - posted 68s.

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