PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Kurt Kitayama came into the Honda Classic with 25 previous appearances on the PGA Tour, most of them ending by missing the cut. He's on track to do a bit better this week.
Kitayama — ranked No. 289 in the world — was nearly flawless at PGA National on Thursday, shooting a 6-under 64 to take an early one-shot lead over Daniel Berger, Chris Kirk and Rory Sabbatini at the Honda Classic.
It was Kitayama's best score in 69 rounds on the PGA Tour, fueled by a career-best run of four consecutive birdies on his second nine.
Kitayama started on the back nine, opened with three consecutive birdies, then had the run of four consecutive birdies — capped by rolling in a 20-footer from just off the green on the par-4 6th, his 15th hole of the day.