SOUTHAMPTON, Bermuda — Ryan Armour and Wyndham Clark survived ferocious wind Friday in the Bermuda Championship to share the lead going into a weekend that includes 64-year-old Fred Funk.
Armour could only guess where the 30 mph gusts would blow his golf ball across Port Royal. The 44-year-old from Ohio still managed three early birdies and another on the par-5 17th for a 1-under 70. Clark played in the afternoon and reached 10-under par until a pair of late bogeys for a 68.
They were at 8-under 134, one shot ahead of Kramer Hickok (68).
The big surprise was Funk, who only played because he had a chance to be paired with his son, Taylor, who played at Texas. Funk, whose last PGA Tour victory was in 2007 at the Mayakoba Classic, chipped in for birdie from the behind the ninth green for a 72, and his son was so excited he about knocked him to the ground in celebration.
“This guy is pretty damn good for an old guy,” said Taylor, who shot an 81, one of nine players who shot in the 80s on the windswept day in Bermuda.
“He fought back and he made the cut, and not many 64-year-olds can do that in the world,” he said. “It was fun to watch him play.”
Funk is the oldest player to make the cut on the PGA Tour since 65-year-old Tom Watson five years ago in the RBC Heritage at Hilton. The only other players 64 or older to make the cut since 1970 were Jack Nicklaus and Sam Snead.
“And then Funk. You throw that in there, it doesn’t sound right, does it?” Fred Funk said. “I don’t know whether I compete, but making the cut was big.”
It wasn’t easy on a day like this, where the wind was so strong it was difficult to stand up, especially on some of the holes along the ocean.
“Today was really hard,” Armour said. “We didn’t know whether to say get up, get down, what to tell it. We couldn’t judge the distance very well and we had some balls going sideways out there and my ball doesn’t usually go sideways. And it would just get up in the wind and it would go 20 yards further left or right than you wanted it to.”
That made the performance by Clark even more remarkable, although the wind finally caught up with him when he took bogeys on the par-5 seventh and the par-3 eighth to fall back into a tie with Armour.
Clark wasn’t caught up in the late bogeys, especially the last one.
“We all were hitting 6- and 5-irons into a par 3 from 160, and I missed about a 5-footer,” Clark said. “It’s bound to happen. If I didn’t bogey those, it would be one of the best rounds of my career. But it’s pretty hard to play a round with 30 mph wind and not make any bogeys.
“I’m not looking at those last two bogeys,” he said. “I’m up there in contention, and that’s all that matters.”
Roger Sloan of Merritt, B.C., is the top Canadian, three shots back at 5 under (70). He currently sits at T6, up 9 spots from Thursday. Michael Gligic, from Burlington, Ont., (71) is 3 under, David Hearn of Brantford, Ont., (72) is 2 under, while Graham DeLaet of Weyburn, Sask., fired a 6-over 77 and will miss the cut.
The best round of the day belonged to Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who not only shot 66, he played bogey-free. He was three shots behind, while Ryder Cup captain Padraig Harrington used all his Irish experience with wind for a 71 — two birdies, two bogeys, 14 pars — and was four shots behind.
The day also brought a few surprising turns — defending champion Brendon Todd, the only player from the top 50 in the world at the Bermuda Championship, missed the cut, and former British Open champion Henrik Stenson withdrew before the start of the second round with a foot injury.