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SBNation.com – All Posts: Rocket Mortgage Classic: Monday qualifier shockingly leads after Day 1


PGA Tour, Rocket Mortgage Classic, Peter Kuest
DETROIT — Peter Kuest plays his shot on the 17th hole during the first round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club on June 29, 2023. | Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images

Peter Kuest, who qualified for the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Monday, sits on top of the leaderboard after 18 holes.

Detroit Rock City has long been the town of gritty underdogs, and this notion was on full display during the first round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

Peter Kuest, who made it into the field through a Monday qualifier, shot an 8-under 64 Thursday at the Detroit Golf Club.

He co-leads with Taylor Moore after round one.

“[I would] probably be fishing back in Utah,” Kuest said when asked where he would be had he not qualified.

Kuest has made just three cuts in his entire PGA Tour career, two of which have happened this season. He tied for 14th at the AT&T Byron Nelson in April and most recently finished in a tie for 57th at the RBC Canadian Open.

He played collegiately at Brigham Young, where he won ten tournaments.

Peter Kuest, PGA Tour, Rocket Mortgage Classic
Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images
DETROIT — Peter Kuest looks on from the 14th green during the first round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club on June 29, 2023.

Kuest can play, and he showed it Thursday.

“We played really solid. We did it all pretty well,” Kuest said when discussing his round. “We chipped one in on the front, hit a bunch of fairways, hit a bunch of greens, rolled a couple putts in. Just kept it simple.”

Despite his opening day success, Kuest knows that it’s only the first round.

“It feels good,” Kuest said. “We’ve got another round tomorrow, so we’re going to get ready for that and then just take it one step at a time.”

Other young stars are in contention at the Detroit Golf Club.

Sam Bennett, the low amateur at the Masters, and Ludvig Aberg, the young Swedish phenom, lurk a stroke behind at 7-under after firing opening rounds of 65.

Collin Morikawa opened with a 6-under 66, as did Canadian Adam Hadwin.

Soft conditions will yield plenty of birdies in the Motor City this weekend, so players will have to continue to go low.

That includes Kuest, who is vying for his first top-ten finish—and first victory—on the PGA Tour.

Do you think any of the young kids will stick around this weekend? Let us know in the comments below.

Jack Milko is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram @jack_milko for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.

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