Patrick Reed leads after taxing day at Augusta, but a slew of blue-chippers are on his tail

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Augusta National is not a golf course, it’s a personality test. It reveals weakness and cowardice, highlights boldness and clear thinking. It asks some of the hardest questions in golf, and the relentlessness of the examination can push players to the breaking point, emotionally and spiritually. After pre-tournament favorite Phil Mickelson staggered in with a second-round 79, he addressed reporters with glassy eyes and a thick voice. His wife, Amy, diagnosed his condition in the language of a concerned therapist: “I think he’s kind of in shock.”

For the second round of this Masters, the course presented a series of riddles: baked-out greens, sucker pins, and swirling winds among them. The volatility of the leaderboard reflected the inner turmoil that was wrought. When a long, taxing round finally came to a close, Patrick Reed had seized the lead, roaring to a front-nine 31 and round of 66. Throw in an opening 69 and Reed is the only player in the field with two rounds in the 60s. (In the long history of the Masters, no one has ever had four of those in the same week.)

Reed is a complicated character, a lone wolf who plays many of his practice rounds by himself and is estranged from his parents. But justified or not, no one in golf possesses more

Article source: http://www.golf.com/tour-news/2018/04/06/masters-2018-patrick-reed-pulls-ahead-blue-chips-close-behind

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