If you consider a bogey-free 67 a statement, that is. Early in the Women's British Open, Ochoa has a three-shot lead on Okinawa's Ai Miyazato, who equaled Ochoa's 6 birdies but suffered an early double and a late bogey, and England's Rebecca Hudson, who closed with 3 birdies on the back while matching Ochoa's bogey total.
There are a lot of people out on the Old Course and many groups still haven't started, but so far only Sweden's Louise Friberg has passed Miyazato and Hudson, at -4 through 16, although Brittany Lincicome gave it a good shot with 2 birdies in her last three holes (finally breaking her 3 birdie-3 bogey deadlock) to finish at -2. Slumping Super Soph Brittany Lang was -3 through 10, but bogeyed the 11th and 12th to fall back into 7th place with Korea's Sarah Lee and Na On Min, France's Karine Icher and Virginie Lagoutte-Clement, and Italy's Tullia Calzavara at -1. 2006 Rookie of the Year Seon Hwa Lee shot a fine 33 on the front but gave it all back and more with a double on 10 and bogeys on 12, 13, 14, and 15 to fall 3 behind Hawaii's Michelle Wie (who was -3 through 10) and Japan's Momoko Ueda (who was -2 through 10), who also cooled off after hot starts but managed to finish at E, along with Hall of Famer Se Ri Pak (who had two early bogeys and two late birdies, along with another pair of both in the middle of her round), 2005 Rookie of the Year Paula Creamer (who spread her four bogeys and birdies around more evenly), and Evian Masters champion Natalie Gulbis (who doubled 16 but birdied 17 and 18).
There's a lot more to report, but I want to wait until Moira Dunn finishes her round--trying to avoid the ol' Mostly Harmless jinx on her this time. Less than 2 hours until the coverage on Japanese tv begins!
[Update 1 (11:08 pm): Well, the road hole dropped Moira back over par, but she's in good company at 74 with Suzann Pettersen and Stacy Prammanasudh, among others. And she's in better shape than big names like Grace Park (75), Jeong Jang and Seon Hwa Lee (76), Cristie Kerr, Shiho Oyama, and Sakura Yokomine (+77), and Julieta Granada (78). And will be ahead of big names like Morgan Pressel (+5 through 11), Juli Inkster, Mi Hyun Kim, and Shi Hyun Ahn (at +4 through 10, 6, and 7 respectively), and Karrie Webb amd Angela Stanford (+3 through 10 and 12, respectively), unless they get their acts together.]
[Update 2 (11:13 pm): So far only Joanne Mills, Maria Hjorth, Angela Park, and Aree Song are under par among those on the course. Lang is now +1 with 3 to play. Time for a quick nap before the tv coverage begins!]
[Update 3 (8/3/07, 7:18 am): Well, I overslept and only saw Yuri Fudoh birdie the 14th with an up-and-down as nice as Annika Sorenstam's on 18 for birdie. Then I overslept again so this update will have to be brief as we're heading out in an hour to some Pokemon thing that onechan's cousins are very excited about. Moira ended up T36 at the end of the day--not a bad start, considering Laura Diaz's 81, Pressel's and Meaghan Francella's 80s, Mi Hyun Kim's, Juli Inkster's, Hye Jung Choi's, Shi Hyun Ahn's, and Laura Davies's 79s, Angela Stanford's and Angela Park's 78s, Karrie Webb's and Jimin Kang's 77s, Ji Yai Shin's 76, and Rachel Hetherington's, Maria Hjorth's, Christina Kim's, and Brittany Lang's 75s. Sure, she's 5 shots behind In-Bee Park, the only person besides Ochoa and Friberg to break 70 on Thursday, but only 3 behind Lincicome, Meena Lee, Wendy Ward, and Joanne Mills, only 2 behind Jee Young Lee, Annika Sorenstam, Sherri Steinhauer, Catrin Nilsmark, and In-Kyung Kim, and only 1 behind the big group at par, which was joined by Sophie Gustafson and Eun-Hee Ji, among others. So she's right in the mix after Day 1!]
[Update 4 (8/3/07, 2:27 pm): Back from the Pokemon event, which I'll devote a separate post to later. Just a quick note on carnage I missed in the last update--Kyeong Bae shot an 80 and Pat Hurst a 77. And the weather is supposed to get worse over the next three rounds. I'm thinking even people who blew up on Thursday can pass a lot of people Friday just by grinding and keeping it close to par. The cut could be as high as +8....]