Branden Grace finished his third round at The Open Championship in just 62 strokes, becoming the first man to ever shoot a 62 at a major championship.
His flawless round came with eight birdies and no bogeys on Saturday, where the weather held for a fairly pleasant day of golf for the players at Royal Birkdale.
Behind the strength of his 8-under round, Grace shot up the leaderboard and finished with an overall score of 4-under and went into the clubhouse just two strokes behind leader Jordan Spieth who was yet to tee off in the third round. Grace will be in position to make some noise on Sunday if he can put together another impressive round.
According to Grace, he wasn’t even aware of his record-setting round as it was happening. “I had no idea that was the lowest. I was so in the zone and playing the round so well,” Grace said. “I was just trying to play the round without a bogey and make another birdie at the last. Sometimes it helps not knowing these things.”
While 31 men before him had shot a 63 at a major championship, Grace was the first in 157 years of major play to beat them by a stroke. In literally hundreds of thousands of rounds major golf, this is the first time a 62 has been written in a scorecard. Knowing that, it’s probably for the best that Grace was keeping history out of his mind while walking the links, but it sounds like that wasn’t an issue for him on the course today.
“When you get on a run like that, you stop thinking about golf,” he said. “It’s one of the best ball-striking rounds of my career.”
Grace will find himself teeing off in one of the later pairs come Sunday when anything can happen, and as fans who remember the finale of last year’s Open Championship well know. But regardless of how Grace finishes at Royal Birkdale, he’s already cemented his place in golf history.
You can watch Grace sink his final putt to secure the record setting round below.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) July 22, 2017