SOUTHPORT, England – There was a reason for Branden Grace’s understated reaction when he finally broke the 63 barrier at a men’s major.
“I had no idea 62 was the lowest ever,” Grace said after shooting 8 under at defenseless Royal Birkdale.
It wasn’t until Grace’s caddie, Zack Rasego, told him on the 18th green that Grace realized what he’d accomplished.
“You’re in the history books,” Rasego said.
“What are you talking about?” Grace replied, as the crowd gave him a standing ovation.
Grace’s explanation was hard to believe. Of the 421 major-championship rounds that were played before Saturday, there had never been a 62. Twenty-nine players had shot 31 rounds of 63, but never any better, despite a slew of close calls. It was one of the hallowed records in the sport.
Rasego knew that history, obviously, but like a perfect game in baseball, he made no mention of the potential history to his boss.
“Obviously now,” Grace said, “it makes the day even sweeter.”