T of C victor Elkington tied atop Hope VTC

January 17, 1992|By New York Times News Service

BERMUDA DUNES, Calif. -- Steve Elkington has never been accused of being the most ambitious player on the PGA Tour, but after winning the year's first event, he has decided to get greedy this week at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.

Elkington, who won the Infiniti Tournament of Champions in a playoff with Brad Faxon on Sunday, shot a 6-under-par 66 at Indian Wells Country Club yesterday.

That was good enough to put him at 11-under-par 133 after two rounds, the lowest score among yesterday's early finishers.

Also finishing the second round of the five-round 90-hole event at 133 was Neal Lancaster. This 29-year-old journeyman, a three-year veteran of the PGA Tour, shot a 66 at Indian Wells that included a 7-under-par 29 on the back nine.

Arnold Palmer, a five-time Hope winner who at age 62 created a sensation in Wednesday's opening round with a 66, faltered yesterday to a 2-over 74 at La Quinta Country Club and was at 140.

For the Australian-born Elkington, golf has never seemed particularly difficult. Despite having won two tournaments in his previous five years on tour, he has often been looked upon as an underachiever who didn't know his own ability.

But winning last weekend seems to have made Elkington hungry. Rather than bask in glory, he has come to the desert this week and made 11 birdies in 36 holes.

"Jack Burke said last night that my clubs don't know I won last week," said Elkington, who is trying to match what Steve Jones did in 1989 by winning the first two tournaments of the year. "I've found it hard to concentrate because of last week. But I want to do well here. I want to get greedy."

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