SAN ANTONIO — Veterans Padraig Harrington and Matt Kuchar each shot a 4-under 68 on Thursday to share the early lead with MJ Daffue and Roberto Diaz in the weather-delayed first round of the Valero Texas Open.
Daffue eagled the par-5 18th hole at TPC San Antonio and Diaz made birdie on 18 to join the 51-year-old Harrington, who has played on the PGA Tour, European Tour and PGA Tour Champions this year, and the 44-year-old Kuchar atop the leaderboard.
Play was delayed by fog in the morning, which prevented the afternoon half of the field from finishing their rounds on Thursday.
Matt Wallace — a winner last week in the Dominican Republic — was one shot back along with Garrick Higgo, Harry Higgs, Chez Reavie and Nick Taylor.
Daffue had the biggest finish. He holed a 27-foot putt for birdie on the par-4 17th hole. He then hammered a 291-yard second shot to the back edge of the green on 18, and converted a 14-footer from the fringe for a 5-under 31 on the back nine.
The 34-year-old Daffue is seeking his first PGA Tour victory. Diaz, playing on a sponsor’s exemption, finished with a 14-foot birdie.
Harrington and Kuchar are both seeking their first win this decade. Kuchar won twice in 2019. Harrington, who won four times last year on the over-50 tour, hasn’t won on the PGA Tour since the Honda Classic in 2015. The three-time major champion’s most recent European Tour victory was the Portugal Masters in 2016.
This month, Harrington was announced as an inductee in the 2024 class to the World Golf Hall of Fame. The last time he was in the top three after his first round was at PGA National eight years ago, when he went on to win. That was also the last time he played in the Masters, and a win in San Antonio would earn an invitation to Augusta National.
Harrington started on the back nine and ran off three straight birdies around the turn and two more on the fourth and fifth holes before closing with four straight pars.
Kuchar opened with a bogey on No. 10, then sat for more than two hours before the fog lifted. He finished his first nine with four straight birdies, then converted 3-footers for birdie on holes No. 5 and 8.