82nd KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship
Credit: PGA

Bob Estes shot a 7-under 64 Thursday at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship and is tied for the lead through 18 holes with Steven Alker.

His 64 matches his career-low round on the PGA Tour Champions.

Estes, who has one top-5 result so far this season, was bogey free.

“I love a clean card,” said Estes.

After starting on the back nine, he birdied his opening hole and added another on the par-4 16th. Estes heated up after making the turn, however, firing a sizzling 5-under 31 coming in.

82nd KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship
BENTON HARBOR, MI - MAY 26: Bob Estes hits his shot from the 12th tee during the first round of the 82nd KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship held at Harbor Shores Golf Club on May 26, 2022 in Benton Harbor, Michigan. (Photo by Montana Pritchard/PGA of America)
Credit: PGA

Estes said he started driving the ball better on Thursday after making a “little adjustment” in his set up.

“Putting me in a good position for the most part. Take advantage of my iron game, which I’m usually pretty good at,” he said. “It’s a good course for me.”

Estes sits fourth on the PGA Tour Champions in Overall Putting Average. His putting prowess was also on display Thursday at Harbor Shores – it was as complete a day as he could have asked for.

“I think I made four good up-and-downs from just off the edge. Four good saves on the back nine, which was my first nine holes, and a couple of good saves on the front nine as well to keep (the card) clean,” said Estes.

He closed with a birdie on the lengthy par-5 9th to tie Alker for the 18-hole lead. Alker is the hottest golfer on PGA Tour Champions so far in 2022, with two victories already.

Estes said he was struggling with allergies for the last three weeks and was still feeling it in his head and his nose heading into the week, but he was happy to report it got weaker as his round went on.

“I’ve been through a lot of boxes of Kleenex the last three weeks,” he said with a smile.

Senior PGA Championship - Round One
TULSA, OK - MAY 27: Bob Estes and his caddie on the fourth hole during the first round of the 81st KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship held at the Southern Hills Country Club on May 27, 2021 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Photo by Darren Carroll/PGA of America via Getty Images)
Credit: PGA of America

Estes won four times on the PGA Tour, including twice in 2001. He has three T6 finishes at the PGA Championship and two top-10 results at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship in his career.

His best KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship was a tie for fifth, which came in his debut in 2017.

Estes missed the cut last year at Southern Hills Country Club.

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