Brown has tee for two

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 7:30 AM ET

Adam Brown said the pressure is on this week.

With a dozen family members in town, taking up five rooms at the glitzy Brookstreet Hotel, the head pro at the National Golf Club in Dundas shares the first-round lead with Windsor's Dave Bell at the BreconRidge Canadian PGA Seniors Championship at The Marshes.

"I've got to play hard this week with five hotel rooms (to pay for)," joked Brown, who had a 5-under-par 67 yesterday despite a two-stroke penalty for playing from the wrong tee blocks on the par-3 fifth hole.

A 65 would have equalled the course record set by Dave Kelly in May at a Quebec Tour event.

"It's my own fault," Brown said of the mix-up with the tee blocks. The tournament is using two sets of markers with the forward tees being used by the Diamond Division (players 70 and over).

Brown, the 2004 seniors champ, just walked up onto the tee and played from the first markers he saw.

Upon realizing his mistake, he played from the proper markers and made a par.

Rule 11-4 says: "If a competitor, when starting a hole, plays a ball from outside the teeing ground, he incurs a penalty of two strokes and must play a ball from within the teeing ground.

"If the competitor plays a stroke from the next teeing ground without first correcting his mistake, or, in the case of the last hole of the round, leaves the putting green without first declaring his intention to fix his mistake, he is disqualified.

"The stroke from outside the teeing ground any subsequent strokes on the hole prior to his correction of the mistake do not count in his score."

With his two-shot penalty, Brown wound up with a double-bogey on the hole.

"I got quiet after that and really started focusing," said Brown.

He sure did.

ON A BIRDIE BINGE

Brown was 2-over at that point. He birdied the sixth and eighth holes, eagled the ninth (from 25 feet) and birdied the 11th, 14th, 16th and 18th holes. He bogeyed the 13th.

Bell matched the score with a six-birdie, one-bogey performance.

"I like the course and I like the condition it's in," said Bell. "I like it because it forces you to concentrate. There's no let up here. It was a solid round. I only missed one green."

Canadian Golf Hall of Famer Dave Barr, meanwhile, checked in at 73, tied for ninth, and blamed his balky putter, a circa 1971 blade.

"I probably turned a 67 into a 73. It was pretty sad on the greens. They drove me nuts," said Barr. "I had three putts at 10 (his first hole of the day) and that shakes up the confidence. I just didn't get the feel. That's the kind of thing that's happened to me. One day I look like a clown and the next day I'm making everything."

After getting a drop on the fifth hole because of a hole made by a burrowing animal, Barr pitched up to six feet and missed the putt.

"That's why I'm retiring," he said on the sixth tee to fellow Hall of Famer Bob Panasik. "And there's no way I'm going to the long putter. I'd probably just spear myself with it."

Serge Thiverge of Longueuil, Que., was alone in third after a 69 and John Irwin of Summerside, P.E.I., was fourth with a 71.

In a group of four players at even-par 72 were Panasik, defending champ Hocan Olsson of Mount Bruno, Claude Tremblay of Blainville, Que., and Attila Becsy of Mississauga.

Joining Barr at 73 were Graham Gunn of the Carleton Golf and Yacht Club, the top local performer.

Bob Farant of Kanata and Pierre Charette of Rockland (who also had a two-stroke penalty for playing from a wrong teeing ground) were in a group at 78, which also included Dan Halldorson, another Canadian Golf Hall of Famer.

Paul Sherratt of Rideau View and Andre Harvey of Gatineau were at 79.

Jack Westover of Langley, B.C., led the Diamond Division with a 76.

The second round of the 54-hole tournament gets underway this morning with tee times from 8:30-10:10 a.m.


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