Lee Westwood and Colin Montgomerie were among those pursuing leader Michael Hoey in more perfect conditions at the second round of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
The pro-am tournament staged at St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns has often been dogged by bad weather, but a surprise heatwave continued as many of the top stars tackled Carnoustie.
Westwood and Montgomerie were in the first two groups out and both started the day two shots off the lead after opening rounds of 68 at Kingsbarns, with overnight joint leader Louis Oosthuizen also among the early starters.
Montgomerie picked up a birdie on the second to improve to five under and was soon joined on that score by Westwood, who birdied the fourth after missing two outside birdie chances on the first and third.
However, that was now three off the pace set by Northern Ireland's Hoey, who had shared the overnight lead following his opening 66 at St Andrews and picked up two early birdies at Kingsbarns.
Hoey also birdied the 15th to improve to nine under par, but defending champion Martin Kaymer was just a shot behind after a run of four birdies in seven holes.
Kaymer picked up shots at the second, fourth, sixth and eighth at Carnoustie as he looks to become the first player to successfully defend the title.
The former US PGA Champion has already defended the Abu Dhabi Championship earlier this season and a win on Sunday would make him just the fourth golfer in European Tour history to defend multiple tournaments in the same season after Seve Ballesteros, Ian Woosnam and Tiger Woods.
Hoey was then joined at the top of the leaderboard by Oosthuizen, the South African picking up birdies at the second, third and sixth at Carnoustie.