Chesters leads after weather-hit first round in Andalucia

Associated Press
FILE - In this Thursday, July 16, 2015 file photo, England's Ashley Chesters follows his drive on the 17th tee during the first round of the British Open Golf Championship at the Old Course, St. Andrews, Scotland. Chesters was leading on 5-under 66 at the Andalucia Valderrama Masters Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018 when play was suspended because of darkness with 60 golfers yet to complete their weather-hit first rounds. (AP Photo/Jon Super, file)
FILE - In this Thursday, July 16, 2015 file photo, England's Ashley Chesters follows his drive on the 17th tee during the first round of the British Open Golf Championship at the Old Course, St. Andrews, Scotland. Chesters was leading on 5-under 66 at the Andalucia Valderrama Masters Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018 when play was suspended because of darkness with 60 golfers yet to complete their weather-hit first rounds. (AP Photo/Jon Super, file)

SOTOGRANDE, Spain (AP) — Ashley Chesters was leading on 5-under 66 at the Andalucia Valderrama Masters when play was suspended because of darkness with 60 golfers yet to complete their weather-hit first rounds on Thursday.

More than four hours was lost as play was twice suspended because of stormy conditions and the threat of lightning at the Real Club Valderrama in southern Spain.

English journeyman Chesters collected six birdies and one bogey to take a one-shot lead over Gregory Bourdy of France. Tournament host and defending champion Sergio Garcia was on 68 along with fellow Spaniards Alvaro Quiros and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, and Australia's Jason Scrivener.

"It's a shame I can't keep going because the last few holes were the best I played all day. Considering all the delays and everything, I'm very happy with 5-under," Chesters said. "The forecast for the rest of the week is not very good either so I thought I'll just make as many birdies as I can and get in."

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