Canada's Patrick Girard takes early PBA Chameleon Championship lead

RENO, Nev. — Canadian veteran bowler Patrick Girard took an early qualifying lead in the Professional Bowlers' Association Chameleon Championship on Wednesday.

The 33-year-old Girard from Jonquiere, Que., posted games of 267, 227, 213, 215, 264, 209, 247 and 238 for a 1,880 pinfall total as competition continued in the PBA World Series of Bowling VIII at the National Bowling Stadium.

"I don't want to make (a title) my goal," said Girard. "That's obviously the ultimate goal, but I just want to bowl consistent. As long as I stay consistent and don't miss too many spares, that's my goal. Today I only missed one spare. It was a really good day. Now my goal is to make one TV show this year."

The Chameleon Championship is the second of four animal pattern qualifying stages leading to the PBA World Championship finals on Dec. 11. With half of the field yet to bowl its Chameleon qualifying round, Girard also had moved up from 29th place after his Cheetah Championship round to challenge for the lead halfway through qualifying for the PBA World Championship.

Girard, the self-proclaimed "old man" among Canadian players who are making their mark in PBA Tour competition this year, finished fourth twice in 2005 PBA Tour events, but continues his quest for a title.

Among the early finishers Wednesday, Girard held a three-pin lead over Dick Allen of Columbia, S.C. (1,877). Lavoie was third at 1,866 followed by Matt McNiel of Minneapolis (1,863) and Thomas Larsen of Denmark (1,854).

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