Doug Barron, playing in just his second PGA Tour Champions event, shot a 7-under-par 65 on Friday to share the first-round lead in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open at Endicott, N.Y.
Spain’s Miguel Angel Jimenez also carded a 65 at En-Joie Golf Club. Marco Dawson and Scott Parel are one shot back, and Billy Andrade, Kevin Sutherland and Australia’s David McKenzie are two strokes off the pace.
Barron is best known for becoming the first player to be suspended by the PGA Tour after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance. He received a one-year ban in 2009 though he said the beta blockers and testosterone found in his system were prescribed due to an existing heart condition.
Barron subsequently returned to play on the second-tier circuit known then as the Nationwide Tour and the Web.com Tour.
His best PGA Tour result was fifth place in the 2005 Chrysler Classic of Tucson.
Barron turned 50 on July 24 and made his Champions debut that week at the Senior Open Championship, where he tied for fifth place.
On Friday, Barron produced four birdies on the front nine and three more on the back nine in a bogey-free round.
“I had a thought on my round, I thought teeing off that 6-, 7-, 8-under was a good round,” Barron said, according to the Binghamton (N.Y.) Press and Sun-Bulletin. “I’ve been around this course (28) times in tournament rounds and however many practice rounds when I was on tour. I like the place, it fits my eye, it reminds me of the two courses I grew up playing at home. …
“I wasn’t sure how it was going to go today. I made some putts, and a couple long two-putts, so it was good. I hit the ball fairly well. Not so great with the driver, but not in trouble. Overall it was good. I hit my irons well, managed to get around the course. My course management was good.”
Jimenez, who has seven Champions victories, notched eight birdies and a bogey.
–Field Level Media
Barron, Jimenez on top in Champions event
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