Watson has wacky start at Northern Trust


LOS ANGELES – Par’s usually a good score.

Bubba Watson made it look like a spectacular score at his opening hole in Thursday’s first round of the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club.

After nearly driving No. 10, the 315-yard hole considered one of the most treacherous short par 4s on the planet, Watson watched his ball trickle off the green, down into a swale. His bid to putt up the slope failed, with his ball rolling back to his feet. His third shot, a flop, plummeted short into a bunker. He holed out his fourth for par.

“I stole one there,” Watson said. “Crazy way to start.”

Watson rode the momentum to a 1-under 70, a good start in windy, tough conditions. He said the opening par fueled him.

“If I make bogey to start, you’re in a different mindset,” Watson said. “Then maybe I bogey again, but I started off with a lot of good breaks going my way.”

By the way, Watson didn’t drive the General Lee, the “Dukes of Hazzard’” classic car he purchased this winter, to Riviera. He left it back in the Phoenix area, where he has a home, so you won’t see him cruising Rodeo Drive in it this week.

“It’s sitting in my garage,” Watson said. “Well, hopefully it’s sitting in my garage.”