A runner-up last year after a T-3 finish in 2013, Bradley is again in the mix after a 4-under 68 left him one shot off the early lead at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He now has eight straight rounds of par or better at this event, a rate of success that seems to surprise even him.
“Honestly, I don’t know. I just seem to play well out here,” Bradley said. “I can’t put my finger on it. I drive the ball really well here, and that’s so important on this golf course. When you do drive the ball well here, you can attack some pins.”
Bradley has transitioned to a regulation-length putter this season, and the results so far have failed to meet expectations: while he finished just one shot out of a playoff at the Northern Trust Open, that remains his lone top-15 finish this season. Bradley missed the cut at the Honda Classic earlier this month, then failed to break 70 en route to a T-38 finish at Trump National Doral.
With the season’s first major on the horizon, Bradley is eager to feel the pressure that only a spot near the top of the standings can create as he chases his first win since the 2012 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.
“I crave so much being in contention, so sometimes when I’ve gone awhile without being in contention I tend to push and force it,” he said. “So just getting that kind of out of the way would be big for me.”