Thomas Levet recovered from a slow start to put himself back on course for victory in the Open de España at PGA Golf Catalunya.
The 40 year old Frenchman bogeyed the second and fourth, with a birdie in between at the third, as England’s Stuart Davis took over at the top of the leaderboard.
But Levet picked up shots on three consecutive holes from the sixth to reach the turn on a tournament total of 16 under par.
Paraguay’s Fabrizio Zanotti had emerged as the nearest challenger – picking up five shots through ten holes to climb to 14 under.
Defending champion Peter Lawrie wasn’t out of contention yet, but at 12 under with eight holes remaining time was fast running out on the Irishman.
European Tour rookie Davis had also slipped back to 12 under but was still on course to easily surpass his previous best finish on The Race to Dubai.