Charley Hoffman wasn't planning on being at Bay Hill until he failed to qualify for a World Golf Championship next week. The change in plans has worked out nicely so far.
Hoffman birdied the 18th hole for a 6-under 66 and a two-shot lead over Matt Fitzpatrick among the early starters Friday in the Arnold Palmer Invitational. In slightly warmer temperatures, Fitzpatrick shot 69.
Lucas Glover was another shot behind after a 69.
Sam Saunders, Palmer's grandson, had another 74 and was in danger of missing the cut.
Hoffman likely would have made the field for the Dell Match Play until he missed the cut at the Valspar Championship last week, the deadline for qualifying. He decided instead to play Bay Hill for the fourth time in the last 10 years.