Tiger Woods fired a bogey-free, 7-under-par 65 Friday to earn a share of the halfway lead in the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando, Fla. Tiger has a 36-hole score of 10-under 134 and is tied with Charlie Wi.
The last time Woods led a PGA Tour event after two rounds was at the 2009 TOUR Championship, where he finished second. The 10-under 36-hole total matches his best start since the 2009 Buick Open. Woods has led or co-led after 36 holes 41 times in his PGA Tour career, winning 33 times.
"I putted well today," said Woods, who poured in seven birdies and just missed several others. "I didn't feel like I hit it all that great today. The good thing is my misses were better. Just played smart all day."
Woods, who has won the tournament a record six times, was a late front-nine starter with Ernie Els and Hunter Mahan. Tiger gave himself good birdie chances at the first three holes, but failed to convert from 11, 17 and 12 feet.
Then, his round took off. At the 561-yard, par-5 fourth hole, Woods carded the first of four-consecutive birdies, rolling in a six-foot putt. He added a 10-footer at the 390-yard par-4 fifth; two-putted from 27 feet at the 526-yard, par-5 sixth; and nailed a 32-foot putt at the 200-yard, par-3 seventh.
Woods two-putted the par-4 eighth and ninth holes from 28 feet to make the turn in 4-under 32.
After a long two-putt par at the par-4 10th hole, Tiger just missed from 15 feet at the par-4 11th. At the long par-5 112th, he drove into the left rough, played his second shot to 99 yards from the green, hit a sand wedge within eight feet and sunk the birdie putt.
At the 370-yard, par-4 13th, Woods knocked his second shot just long -- the only green he missed in regulation all day -- but easily got up and down to save par.
Tiger two-putted the par-4 14th hole from 37 feet.
Woods did well to two-putt the 467-yard, par-4 15th hole from 60 feet, then birdied the 511-yard, par-5 16th. After a big drive, he had 206 yards left to the water-guarded green. His second shot barely cleared the water and wound up 51 feet left of the hole. From there he hit a nice lag putt and easily two-putted for a birdie to earn a share of the lead.
Tiger took the outright lead at the dangerous, 224-yard, par-3 17th, where the green is guarded by water. He flushed a 6-iron 14 feet below and the cup and made the birdie putt.
At the tough, 458-yard, par-4 18th, Woods found the fairway and knocked his second shot from 137 yards 23 feet behind the hole. The birdie putt looked true but hit a spike en route to the cup and burned the right edge. Tiger cleaned up the three-foot par putt to complete a very enjoyable round.
Woods used 30 putts during the round and birdied all of the par 5s.
"I felt great over my putter and my speed was good," he said. "I hit a couple of putts short, right in the center of the hole. Actually, it could have been a really low round today."
As for the weekend, Tiger isn't looking too far ahead.
"I'm comfortable up there and feel like I'm playing well," said Woods. "We still have a long way to go."
Woods will play with Wi in the final twosome on Saturday. They will tee off at 1:50 p.m. ET on the first hole.