WASHINGTON • Doc Redman may be only 22, but he was unfazed by the big guns he was playing against on a course he is familiar with.
The American collected seven birdies in his last eight holes to grab a share of the first-round lead with Scott Stallings and Kevin Kisner at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit on Thursday.
Redman, runner-up at last year's edition and still chasing a first PGA Tour win, made a quiet start at the Detroit Golf Club, picking up a single birdie on his outward nine.
But after taking his only bogey of the round at the par-four 10th, he caught fire by carding birdies the rest of the way home except the par-five 14th for a seven-under 65.
He said he is not intimidated by playing alongside the world's best despite his age.
"I've got a lot of experience and I feel very comfortable around the guys and around the courses," he said. "I think I feel very comfortable because I've played well here and been here. So it just comes down to playing golf and doing the best I can."
His 65 was the lowest first-round score in his career. His previous lowest was a 66 at last year's RSM Classic. The four consecutive birdies he made from the 15th to 18th holes also tied his career-long streak, achieved at the Honda Classic in February.
Stallings, 35, got off to a birdie-bogey start but was error free the rest of the way, capping his round with back-to-back birdies.
Starting on the back nine, Kisner, 36, got hot late with four birdies over his final five holes as he looks for his fourth win on the PGA Tour.
Lurking one shot back are seven players, including Bryson DeChambeau, who had a roller coaster round that included an eagle, eight birdies and four bogeys. He would have joined the leaders if not for a bogey on his last.
"There was obviously a lot of highs and a lot of lows," said the 26-year-old, who has been crushing balls since adding muscle during the PGA Tour's three-month break.
"But if I can keep hitting it straight, hitting some greens and making the putts like I am, it's going to be a fun week."
World No. 6 Webb Simpson, the highest-ranked player in the field and winner of last month's RBC Heritage, carded a 68 to sit three off the pace.
REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE