Hero World Challenge leader Bubba Watson said conditions in the Bahamas have made life easier for the star-studded field after he set a course record.
Watson stole the show at the Albany Golf Club on Saturday, leapfrogging world number one Jordan Spieth atop the leaderboard thanks to his flawless third-round 63.
In picturesque surrounds, two-time Masters champion Watson made the most of the light winds, holing seven birdies and an eagle as he tied the course record that had initially been set by Englishman Paul Casey, who is two shots back in second position.
Speaking after his penultimate round, Watson said: “As we’re seeing, when there’s no wind — light wind — we can score.
“We’re all good players, don’t get me wrong. We’re all top 50 in the world. But with no wind, this golf course is a little bit easier to make birdies.
“Obviously, 20 mile-an-hour winds, this golf course becomes a beast.”
Watson is competing at the Hero World Challenge, an unofficial PGA Tour event, which benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation.
The American labeled the tournament a “fun event” and he is relishing the stress-free mindset.
“For me, if I can get that thought process at every event I’m a lot better,” Watson added.
“When I’m at practice rounds and playing at home with the boys, I play a lot better. I don’t get so caught up in bad swings or bad thoughts. That’s the mindset I need every week. I’m not too stressed right now.”
Casey is within two shots of Watson at 17 under through 54 holes after also carding a 63 at Albany.
The 38-year-old had set a course record after closing with five pars before Watson made his move.
Casey, who has two top-25 finishes on Tour heading into the New Year, added: “The only thing probably lacking this year has been a victory. Everything else has been great.
“I feel so optimistic about where I’m going and my game in general. It is selfish to always want that win but we do and that’s why we play.”