Mark Flindt Haastrup continued to impress on home soil as he took the lead at the end of Day Two at the Made in Denmark Challenge presented by Ejner Hessel.
The Dane followed up his opening round of 64 with a four under par round of 67 to move ahead by three shots and enhance his chance of victory in-front of his home fans.
The 34 year old holed four birdies and only dropped one shot on the tricky back nine – his first nine holes – and remained in control down after the turn. He made another two birdies and only one bogey to move away from Englishman Marcus Armitage and the chasing pack.
Armitage lit up the Backtee Course at Himmerland Golf and Spa Resort with six birdies in his first nine holes to race up the leaderboard. But the 2016 Foshan Open champion could not catch Haastrup as he shot two over par after the turn to card a round of 67.
With the chance to claim his first European Challenge Tour victory since 2008, Haastrup has used his knowledge of the course to his advantage and is thrilled with his prospects for the weekend.
“I’m in a place in my career and also on the Rankings where I’ll take a win anywhere,” he said. “Obviously, when the chance to win is in Denmark and at Himmerland where the course is so good and in such good shape, plus there’s a good atmosphere with all the people, then it would be great.
“It was a little bit tougher with the wind today, but I’m very happy. I was maybe a little shakier with the irons, which were spot on yesterday, but I got some birdies here and there and it was a good round.
“It’s been a long time since I’ve been leading a tournament, but I don’t see why I wouldn’t be comfortable out in-front. I think I’ll cope fine being in the final group and if I don’t, well there is another day where I can shoot a good score.”
Joachim B. Hansen and Marco Iten, Haastrup’s co-leaders from the opening round, could not take advantage of their first day position, as the pair both shot one over par. However, Antti Ahokas and Christopher Feldborg Nielsen both challenged the lead with their seven under par rounds of 65.
Feldborg Nielsen made a hole-in-one on the par three 16th on his was to his lowest round of the year, while Finland’s Ahokas began a late charge but finished double bogey-birdie-double bogey to also sit four shots behind the Dane.