Welshman Bradley Dredge and Scotland's Peter Whiteford charged into the BMW International Open first round lead with an eight under par 64 in Munich.
Dredge played the back nine in 31 with an eagle and three closing birdies to put the 36 year old one ahead of compatriot Phillip Price and Thai golfer Chapchai Nirat.
But he was swiftly joined in the clubhouse by Challenge Tour graduate Whiteford, who eagled at par five sixth after hitting a five iron to six feet and carded six further birdies without dropping a shot.
"It sounds stupid because I've shot eight under but I didn't really feel like I'm swinging it that great," said Whiteford.
"I got the ball around the golf course really, really well - sometimes that's your best golf when you're not flying on all cylinders. I basically birdied the birdie holes I guess."
As for Ernie Els, third in the US Open on Sunday, he was chasing Dredge hard at four under with two to play, but bogeyed them both for a 70.
"There was virtually no wind and I think it's the easiest I've played the course," said Dredge.
"I'm surprised there are not more low scores. You always need a bit of luck. I hit some poor shots, but managed to get away with them.
"I do feel my game is getting back together and it is a matter of consistency at the moment."
He has not won for four years and after reaching the game's top 50 in 2007 is now ranked 173rd.
Past and present Ryder Cup Captains Sir Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer and Colin Montgomerie were all among the later starters, as was World Number Eight Paul Casey.