SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Brandt Jobe shot a 5-under 66 on Thursday to increase his lead to two strokes in the Champions Tour qualifying tournament.
The top-five finishers Friday will earn fully exempt status, and the next seven will be conditionally exempt. The top 30 finishers and ties will be eligible to compete for spots in open qualifiers.
Jobe, a six-time winner on the Japan Golf Tour, had a 16-under 199 total on TPC Scottsdale’s Champions Course. He had five birdies in a six-hole stretch on the back nine.
“I really didn’t play that well today and got lucky with the score I ended up with,” Jobe said. “Tomorrow, I’ll try not to beat myself because I tried hard to do that today on the front nine. I’ve put myself in a good spot and I’m happy with that, but I’ve got one more big round to play.”
Mike Grob was second after a 66. The Billings, Montana, player had a hole-in-one on the 199-yard eighth hole with a 6-iron.
“It feels like you need to make some birdies out here and if you’re not making them early, you get a little worried,” said Grob, a six-time winner on the Canadian Tour. “That hole-in-one really helped.”
Jose Coceres, Willie Wood and Gibby Gilbert III were tied for third at 13 under. Coceres had a 64, and Wood and Gilbert shot 68.
In a tie for 30th, Jim Rutledge leads the Canadians at 6-under 207. Rick Gibson and Stuart Hendley – the other two Canadians in the field – are tied for 53rd at 2-under 211.