Tiger Woods is tied for seventh after round one of the Arnold Palmer Invitational at the Bay Hill Course on Thursday.
In fact, he’s just four shots off the paceleader Henrik Stenson while also showing glimpses of why he was the most dominant golfer of his era. For instance, on the par-3 seventh hole, he shot a 71-foot birdie that got even the stoic American grinning like a Cheshire cat.
If Woods were to build momentum, it should be on familiar territory. Bay Hill is where the 42-year-old was always his best. He already won eight in this course with a total of 121 under par. He also won most in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, raking in $7,319,359.53 over the years.
“My dad always told me, ‘Just putt to the picture,'” he later told reporters. “And I was asking for it to bite as it came over that knob. It was a little too hot, and it had to crash in the hole.”
Coming off a spinal fusion surgery last year, the fourth procedure he underwent on that nagging back injury, Woods is making huge strides in his goal to be dominant again in the sport he ruled for years. Even pundits had to grudgingly admit that the controversial golfer is way ahead of the curve, especially since it’s just been six months when he started swinging.
And now he’s already consistently in the prowl.
After an inauspicious start in Riviera where he ended up with eight bogeys in the second round. Since then, he only recorded eight bogeys in five consecutive rounds. But Woods was hardly surprised by the outcome.
“I’ve been away from it for so long that when I first came back it was just a matter of getting my feel for tournament golf again,” he said.
What should worry the competition, however, is the fact that Woods believes that he has regained his rhythm back. “I can just see and feel it and go,” he explained. “And that’s just because I’ve got my ‘feels’ back again.”