LOS ANGELES – Patrick Cantlay has already won this season on the PGA Tour, back in November at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, and he qualified for last year’s Tour Championship with just a dozen starts, but that only partially explains his solid play this week at the Genesis Open.
Cantlay was born in nearby Long Beach, Calif., and went to college at UCLA, where he estimated he played Riviera Country Club about once a month.
“I know where to eat, and when everyone’s saying it took them an hour and a half to get back to Beverly Hills yesterday afternoon, I say that’s normal,” Cantlay laughed.
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But it may be Cantlay’s knowledge of Riviera that’s giving him an edge this week following rounds of 66-69 for a two-stroke lead when he finished. Specifically, after his second round he referenced the importance of understanding where to miss.
“Definitely knowing where the ball feeds on some of these hole locations is important, and where to err,” he said. “This golf course has a lot of intricate architecture, especially on the greens and particular hole locations where the ball will feed from certain spots, and knowing that’s huge.”
That local knowledge has paid off particularly on the greens, where Cantlay has just two three-putts this week.