Mr. 57: Chilean golfer Cristóbal Del Solar sets new PGA Tour record round
Jack Bantock, CNN | 2/9/2024, 10:54 a.m.
Cristóbal del Solar wrote his name into the history books on Thursday, as the Chilean golfer shot a 13-under 57 at the Astara Golf Championship to set the new record for the lowest round ever shot at a PGA Tour-sanctioned event.
The 30-year-old Florida State alumni shot two eagles and nine birdies at Country Club de Bogotá in Bogota, Colombia, the shortest course on the Korn Ferry Tour – the developmental circuit for the PGA Tour – at 6,254 yards.
Sitting some 8,600 feet above sea level, allowing the ball to fly further, rainfall on the Paco course earlier in the week meant that players were permitted to lift, clean and place balls under preferred lies.
Del Solar’s bogey-free feat bests the previous record set by Germany’s Stephan Jaeger and “Mr. 58” Jim Furyk, who both shot 58 in the space of a remarkable two-week period in 2016 at the Korn Ferry Tour’s Ellie Mae Classic and the PGA Tour’s Travelers Championship respectively.
And yet the world No. 259 was somehow left to rue three “missed opportunities” to go even lower, including a birdie putt at the final hole that agonizingly lipped out.
“Incredible, man,” del Solar told reporters.
“I asked my caddie on the 18th after hitting my tee shot … ‘Hey, am I going to break 60? Because I’ve never broken 60 before.’ He was like, ‘You’re going to break a little bit more than 60.’
“I played really good golf. I drove the ball well, chipped it well, putted well. I’m happy. It was a great round.”
Chasing his first win on the Korn Ferry Tour after four wins on the PGA Tour Latinoamérica, del Solar’s unprecedented start powered him into a four-stroke lead over American duo Brian Campbell and Michael Johnson, whose opening round 61’s would have tied the low scoring record for the event prior to the Chilean’s 57.
“Hopefully, I’ll celebrate Sunday as well,” del Solar added.
Only one round of 57 had ever been previously been shot on a professional tour recognized in the world rankings, when Ireland’s David Carey made history en route to victory at the 2019 Cervino Open on the Alps Tour, the third tier circuit of European golf.
Last week, del Solar’s Chilean compatriot Joaquin Niemann shot a 12-under 59 at the LIV Golf season opener in Mayakoba, Mexico, carding an eagle and 10 birdies.