Jerry Bruner carded a hat-trick of birdies before the turn to open up a gap at the top of the leaderboard in the Benahavis Senior Masters.
The diminutive American, who was joint overnight leader with Scot Andrew Oldcorn, posted six consecutive pars at the start of his second round before picking up shots on the seventh, eighth and ninth holes.
Despite birdieing the third hole for the outright lead, Oldcorn slipped back after a bogey on the fourth and a double bogey on the fifth but recovered with birdies on seven and nine.
Englishman John Gould, who is looking to seal his spot on the Senior Tour next season, also had a hat-trick of birdies before the turn to move to seven under par, two shots behind leader Bruner.
The 50 year old had ealrier birdied the first and third holes at La Quinta Golf and Country Club, in Benahavis, Spain, dropping his only shot of the day so far on the fourth.
Thailand’s Boonchu Ruangkit, who is looking to strengthen his stranglehold on the Senior Tour Order of Merit, birdied the sixth, seventh and ninth holes to reach the turn in 32, one stroke back on six under par.
Defending champion Carl Mason is also in contention having posted three birdies and one bogey on his front nine following an opening round 68.
The Englishman’s compatriot Peter Mitchell posted five consecutive birdies following the turn in his round of 66 to move to three under par for the tournament.