ORLANDO, Fla. – Bryson DeChambeau had a magnetic resonance imaging test last week on his upper back, struggled to a 76 on Day 1 at the Valspar Championship and ultimately withdrew from the event. It turned out to be exactly what he needed.
DeChambeau moved into a share of the early lead with Henrik Stenson at the Arnold Palmer Invitational thanks to a second-round 66 that included six birdies and an eagle at the par-5 16th hole.
“I think that rest last week kind of helped,” DeChambeau said. “My body wasn't doing great and I was able to come out here pretty fresh and get the ball in the hole.”
The MRI didn’t indicate any reason for concern and DeChambeau explained that there is no pain while he’s playing golf, but he does feel discomfort when he’s resting.
Bay Hill is the start of a torrid run for DeChambeau, who plans on playing the Shell Houston Open prior to heading to the Masters. He also plans on playing the RBC Heritage the week after the year’s first major.
Friday was a dramatic turnaround for DeChambeau, who dropped to 1 over par for the day with a bogey at the third hole, but he was able to rally late thanks to his eagle at the 16th hole.
“It was fantastic. Just striped a drive down 16. Had a nice little 8-iron in and just hit a nice little butter cut in there against the wind, held it against the wind,” he said. “I thought it was going a little too much, but stayed up there and went to 7 feet and I was able to knock it in.”