The Oban man had to settle for a six-over-par 76 on a course he’d described as being an “absolute monster” and he wasn’t alone in finding it tough at the Rochester venue. World No 17 Tyrrell Hatton signed for a 77 while top-ranked Jon Rahm, US Open champion Matt Fitzpatrick and Jason Day, last week’s winner on the PGA Tour, all had the same score as MacIntyre. As did German Yannick Paul, who currently sits in one of the six automatic spots for Europe’s Ryder Cup team, and Spaniard Adri Arnaus.
Pole Adrian Meronk and Irishman Seamus Power, two of the leading contenders to be rookies on Luke Donald’s team in Rome in September, also face a fight to make the cut after matching 74s. And the same goes for Danish twins Nicolai and Rasmus Hojgaard, as well as another Spaniard Adrien Otaegui, after they also opened with five-over efforts in New York State.
MacIntyre, who has made the cut in all ten of his previous major appearances, sits in a tie for 117th in the uncompleted opening circuit, with 30 players still to finish following a frost delay of just under two hours at the start of the day in the second major of the season.
The 26-year-old had opened with three straight pars before running up a 6 at the 617-yard 13th, having started at the tenth in a group alongside Austrian Sepp Straka and American Harris English. MacIntyre then dropped back-to-back shots at the eighth and ninth before following another bogey at the third by running up a double-bogey 7 at the fourth. He slipped to six over for the round after more spillage at the sixth before picking up his only birdie at the par-4 eighth from just under four feet. The two-time DP World Tour winner was ranked in the top 50 in terms of fairways hit on the day, but it was a different story on and around the greens. He was 123rd around the green and 152nd on the putting surfaces, where he was -2.646 in strokes gained.
PGA Tour rookie Eric Cole leads on five-under but still has four holes to play when play resumes at noon UK time. Cole, who lost in a play-off at the Honda Classic earlier this season, made six birdies in the 14 holes that he completed but faces 180 yards in for his second shot at the difficult par-4 sixth when he resumes his round. The clubhouse lead is held by 2010 US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau, who surprised himself both by driving the golf ball so straight – he hit nine out of 14 fairways – and by making six birdies.
Of those finished, the LIV Golf player holds a one-shot lead over world No 2 Scottie Scheffler and Canadian Corey Conners. “It’s a fantastic round at Oak Hill,” said DeChambeau. “It’s a prestigious place. Very difficult golf course. As I was looking throughout the week, I’m like, ‘Man, I don’t know how shooting under par is even possible out here on some of the golf holes.”