Setting a Champions course record at Keene Trace with a 60 at the Barbasol Championship on Saturday was good, said James Hahn, but it wasn’t fit for a frame.
After all, it wasn’t a 59.
“It’s the unicorn, isn’t it?” Said Hahn, a 39-year-old South Korean-born professional who played college golf in Cal-Berkeley. “This is the one everyone is trying to chase away. At 60, that dashboard probably doesn’t mount on the wall. At 59 you can tattoo this on my forehead and that would be pretty cool.
After all, there have only been 12 under-60 innings in PGA Tour history. But come on now, Hahn’s 60s have consistently broken Kelly Kraft’s course record of 61 in the 2019 Barbasol and put Hahn two shots behind frontman JT Poston, who shot a 66 on Saturday to go with his 65 and 66. the first two rounds. Poston is 19 under par for the tournament.
Luke List, who finished fourth in the John Deere Classic last week, is second heading into Sunday’s final round. List drew a 65 to 18 under for the event. Hahn and Joseph Bramlett are tied for third. Bramlett shot a 67 for Saturday’s third round, which was delayed two hours by an early morning downpour.
“It’s magical to do a short,” Hahn said of just missing a 59. “It stings a bit, but I played well today.”
In fact, he played really well. Hahn shot a 69 Thursday and a 70 Friday before catching fire on Saturday. He hit the fifth par 5 hole before playing the first nine at 6 under. After birding 10, 13 and 14, Hahn won the par-5 No.15, his fourth eagle of the tournament.
“No one was really following us until 12 or 13,” Hahn said. “Then when I contributed (15) it got pretty strong.”
Hahn approached 18 with a chance for the elusive 59, but narrowly missed a 30-foot putt just after his partner, Richard Johnson, made his long putt on the last hole.
Affable Hahn missed much of 2019 after surgery for a torn triceps. After not touching a club for six months, the two-time PGA event winner played with a major medical exemption. He retired from the Honda Classic in March with a rib injury; he failed to make the cut in seven consecutive tournaments.
So how does he maintain the momentum from Saturday to Sunday?
“I don’t know. This is the first time I’ve been in this situation,” said Hahn, whose 6-year-old daughter Kailee is traveling with him and his wife Stephanie. “Go have Shake Shack tonight and watch. cartoons. “
Cartoons are Kailee’s choice.
“She’s a boss,” Hahn said.
A local golfer witnesses history up close
Morehead State senior golfer Joe Muschong was working at the Keene Trace pro shop when a call came in saying one of the Barbasol golfers needed a caddy.
“I guess I pulled the straw and got lucky,” said the high school graduate Lafayette.
And then some, because the All-OVC golfer was on the bag for Hahn’s 60th birthday on Saturday.
“A few weeks ago my caddy really left me,” Hahn said. “So I was looking for a shopping cart. This week I was lucky enough to have a local guy who knows the golf course. He helped me a lot this week.
In fact, Muschong said outside of practice rounds on Monday and Tuesday, he didn’t need to offer much help to Hahn, a PGA Tour veteran.
“He was chatty, which was good,” Hahn said. “It relaxes me a bit.”
“I was a little nervous,” Muschong admitted. “But then he started doing his thing and I just had to call.”
What did Hahn do so well on Saturday?
“He drove really well today,” said Muschong. “He had tons of opportunities yesterday and they just started to drop early and he took over and entered the zone.”
Did Hahn know he was within range of 59 on the last hole?
“He knew,” Muschong said. “And he gave it a hell of a run.”
A French golfer runs out of steam on Saturday on the last Barbasol hole
Paul Barjon, a 28-year-old Frenchman, sizzled on Saturday, dropping to 9 below par for the day before overtaking boguey on the 18th hole.
“A bit of a disappointing finish with the double bogey,” said Barjon. “It didn’t end on the best note, but overall it was a great day. I gained ground on the leaders and I will try to start again (Sunday).
The TCU graduate, who calls Ft. Worthwhile, shot a 71 and a 69 the first two days before throwing a tough charge in the third round, streaking birdies on six straight holes – No.5 to No.10 .
“It was one of those rounds where it didn’t matter where I was aiming the ball, it was kind of on the greens,” said Barjon. “So it’s always fun.”
But the water surged up and bit Barjon on the 18th as his second shot sank into the drink.
“I think it’s a tough pin placement today,” he said. “It’s not an easy hole to parry to begin with and when you hit it in the water it makes it a little harder.”
Born in Bordeaux, France, Barjon grew up in New Caledonia before immigrating to the United States. He turned pro in 2016 and got a PGA Tour card for the next year. Barjon won the Huntsville Championship on the Korn Ferry Tour in May, winning the third hole in a sudden death playoff.