This is one event you will not want to miss. There’s food, there’s cocktails, there’s the Riviera and its historic clubhouse and pro-golfers. The kicker?
One of the top sporting events in the country is in Pacific Palisades’ backyard.
At the end of the first round on Thursday, Chilean pro golfer Joaquin Niemann, 23, was leading with an 8-under-par of 63. After finishing play, he told reporters “It’s got to be one of my best days on the golf course, especially in a place like this with this history. Riviera Country Club is one of my favorite golf courses and this event is my favorite during the year.”
Tied for second at 5-under were Scottie Scheffler, Jordan Spieth, Cameron Young and the defending champion Max Homa, who made a 79-foot eagle putt on No. 10.
In a Wednesday interview, Homa said “I’m playing in a group that I don’t typically play in.”
Today and tomorrow, he’s paired with Dustin Johnson and Adam Scott. Johnson, who was the 2017 winner had a difficult first round and is two over par.
Adam Scott was 3-under today (the Aussie won in 2005 and 2020), making a birdie on the par-5 17th hole. Three-time winner Bubba Watson (2014, 2016 and 2018) was 1 under.
Sahith Theegala, 24, the former Pepperdine star, who won the Genesis collegiate showcase in 2017, was 2 under.
After Friday’s round, the field will be cut in half, so if you have a favorite—try to get to the course tomorrow.
Generally, the weather acts up in February, with pouring rain or heavy winds, putting a damper on the tournament, But this entire week is predicted to be sunny and in the high 60s. This is the kind of weather people in the Midwest marvel over as they huddle under blankets to watch the tournament on TV.
In fact, all of this beautiful sunny weather, raised some concerns, UCLA Health had a booth and were handing out sunscreen to fans.
A resident and member of the Riviera Golf Club marveled at the course on Wednesday, telling Circling the News. “It’s the best we’ve seen it, the fairways are like carpets.”
The tournament started with collegiate players on Monday. West Forest University sophomore Michael Brennan, went a 5-under-par round of 66, which earned him a place as one of the 120 golfers in the Genesis Invitational. After the first round today, he finished even.
The pro-am was held on Wednesday, with celebrities John McEnroe, Al Michaels, Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, Sebastian Maniscalco, and other golf enthusiasts joining a pro-golfer to play the course. The money raised from the event goes to Tiger Woods TGR Foundation that focuses on education in underserved communities.
To get tickets for the Genesis (visit: genesisinvitational.com).