Expectations were high for Victoria’s Jim Rutledge heading into this week’s PGA Seniors’ Championship of Canada at Connaught Golf Club in Medicine Hat, Alta.
That’s not only because his six wins at this event rails only Canadian legend Moe Norman’s mark of eight, but because just a few short months ago, Rutledge finished second at the BetRegal PGA Championship of Canada.
Firing 64 is a sure way to exceed even the loftiest expectations.
“I think the key to the game was getting out of the gate quick,” said Rutledge.
“I made birdie on two and three and then made some more on five, six and seven to play the opening nine five under. Overall, I drove the ball well, hit a lot of greens and gave myself a lot of chances,” he said. “
“I look forward to playing because I haven’t been playing a lot,” said Rutledge. “I’m looking forward to seeing all the guys and I think the game is more enjoyable now. The grind has gone away compared to when I was playing on tours, it was a lot of travel and I’ve enjoyed staying home more.”
Trailing Rutledge by one is Elbow Springs executive professional Scott Allred, whose eagle on the par four seventh helped him to a first-round 65.
“I really like this course. I won the Alberta Junior here when I was 17, 45 years ago,” said Allred. “The greens are really undulating and you have to trust that you have to sometimes play the ball outside the cup and make a good stroke.”
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