Ciganda leads, top-ranked Park struggles in Evian 1st round
EVIAN-LES-BAINS, France (AP) — Carlota Ciganda shot a 6-under 65 Thursday to take an early two-stroke lead at the Evian Championship, the final women’s major of the season.
The 21st-ranked Spaniard had six birdies, including on three of the four par-5s, as the early starters played through excellent conditions on the 6,523-yard Evian Resort Golf Club course. Brooke Henderson and Nasa Hataoka both finished their rounds at 4 under.
Former major champions Mo Martin and In Gee Chun were among four players at 3-under 68.
Top-ranked Sung Hyun Park, who was still on the course, dropped four shots early in her first round. Park struggled to find the greens and was 4 over after five holes, with thunderstorms forecast to break through the 27 degrees Celsius (80 degrees F) heat.
Women’s British Open champion Georgia Hall made a steadier start with three birdies and no bogeys through eight holes.
Ciganda finished third at the U.S. Open in June and seventh in the British Open last month.
“I don’t want to think about winning,” said the 28-year-old Ciganda, who previously helped Arizona State win a college title. “I think I have a good plan and I’m excited for the next three days.”
Defending champion Anna Nordqvist and fifth-ranked Lexi Thompson both shot even-par 71.