PLAYA DEL CARMEN, Mexico -- Will Claxton shot a 5-under 66 in windy conditions Thursday to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Mayakoba Golf Classic.
Making his fifth career start on the PGA Tour, the 30-year-old former Auburn player had four straight birdies early on his back nine on the El Camaleon course.
Claxton and Turnesa had the only bogey-free rounds.
"This golf course, it really keeps your attention off the tees," Howell said. "There's a lot of trouble out there, and it's too hard to get ahead of yourself here. The golf course almost helps you stay where you're at just because it demands a lot of focus and attention on it. Fortunately, I was able to drive the ball in play today, and that gives you a good chance around here to score."
"It's really relaxing down here," Stadler said. "Golf course-wise, I think it's one of the best we play all year. I look forward to coming here every year. I tend to play well here. I think I'm just in a good place mentally down here."
Champions Tour player Nick Price opened with a 69.
"I don't feel that this course you need to overpower this course," Price said. "This course has got a lot of strategy on it, particularly off the tees, putting the ball in the right place. All in all, I played well today."
Defending champion Johnson Wagner had a 73. Wagner won the Sony Open in Hawaii in January and tied for second the following week in the Humana Challenge in California.
Last year, he beat Spencer Levin with a par on the first hole of a playoff.
Levin also opened with a 73.
Greg Norman, the El Camaleon designer, had a 79. The 57-year-old Norman played in a group with Wagner and Levin.
Mike Weir struggled to a 79 in his second start of the year.
Coming off surgery on his right elbow in August, the Canadian missed the cut two weeks ago in the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and failed to secure a sponsor exemption last week for the Northern Trust Open at Riviera.
Mexico's Jose de Jesus Rodriguez nearly aced the par-3 eighth, but his ball bounced out of the cup. He then made a 25-foot birdie putt, and finished with a 71.