Austrian Thomas Feyrsinger produced a stunning finish to card a five under par 67 for the second day running to lead the Karnten Golf Open by Markus Brier Foundation at the halfway stage.
Feyrsinger picked up four shots in the last three holes and has a one shot advantage over compatriot Markus Brier, the creator of the tournament, and Dutchman Floris De Vries, who carded rounds of 68 and 67 respectively at Klagenfurt-Seltenheim Golf Club.
Overnight leader Martin Wiegele, who gave the home crowds even more reason to cheer yesterday when he shot a stunning ten under par 62, struggled to match his first round form and laboured to a four over par 76 to slip back to six under overall.
Feyrsinger was delighted to see some hard work over the last few months starting to pay off.
“I’ve had a hard, hard time this last year and have been working so hard on my game,” he said. “I’ve made many changes over the winter to the physical and mental aspects and kept telling myself that being patient would pay off.
“Today I felt great and it was a good finish which has put me in this position. I finished eagle, birdie, birdie so it was nice to end on that. The three bogeys came as a result of missing the green and failing to get up and down.
“Earlier in the round I was getting a little tense and I three-putted the 12th – the third from about two feet. I just told myself to relax and it worked.”
Brier had earlier set the clubhouse lead but was not completely satisfied with how he played.
“It was a bit different today as I was driving the ball really well but was not so good with my irons,” he said. “It was almost the opposite of yesterday. I only missed one fairway, but the irons were a little shaky and I didn’t give myself too many good birdie chances.
“I holed long putts for birdie at the third and the 11th and I chipped in for birdie at the 12th. I had a couple of close ones but I wasn’t as accurate as I was in the first round.”
De Vries won the Mugello Tuscany Open a fortnight ago and is confident he can pick up his second Challenge Tour victory here.
“I’m playing really well and I think I can win it, yes,” he said. “I’m really relaxed and today I was playing like it was a practice round. It felt great.
“The only bad thing that happened was my three wood broke when I hit a shot. I heard this loud noise and I looked up and the club head flew off and the ball went only about 40 yards. It cost me a shot and I’ll have to find a new three wood but it’s not too serious.”
Wiegele admitted it was hard to follow such a sublime score and having a three shot at the start of the second round put him under pressure.
“It was the first time I’d ever shot 62 and the first time I’ve led a tournament after the first round,” he said. “I tried not to think about it but it’s not easy. It was in my head a bit.
“All of a sudden I was six over but I managed to play the rest of the round in two under so at least there’s a positive to take from it and I’m still in a good position. I just wasn’t as accurate and on this course if you go in the rough or the water it’s at least one shot dropped.”