Camilo Villegas hits off the ninth tee of the Jack Nicklaus Private Course at PGA West during the first round of the Humana Challenge PGA golf tournament.
LA QUINTA, Calif. -- A little extra time off this winter left David Toms and Camilo Villegas feeling fresh for the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.
Toms and Villegas shot 9-under 63s to top a leaderboard dotted with impressive scores in the opening round Thursday.
Ted Potter Jr., Sang-moon Bae, Brandt Snedeker and Bob Estes were one stroke behind in postcard-perfect weather on the pro-am tournament's three generous Palm Springs-area courses.
Villegas and Toms both played bogey-free at the erstwhile Bob Hope Classic, which has dropped one day of its traditional five-round format this year.
After playing on the winning U.S. team in the Presidents Cup, Toms passed on a hard-to-get spot in the lucrative Chevron World Challenge in December to spend extra time with his family. He shook off tough start to the new season in Hawaii with excellent play alongside Presidents Cup teammate Phil Mickelson at La Quinta Country Club, which boasts the tournament's toughest course.
Toms also got a boost playing alongside Mickelson, who struggled to a 74. Toms made a 30-foot birdie putt on the sixth hole right after Mickelson holed an eagle putt, ratcheting up the energy early in the tournament.
"That's probably the biggest crowd I've ever had playing golf here," Toms said. "It was nice to play a good round and have people energized and out there cheering for your birdies."