Clark Dennis (European Tour)
Clark Dennis set a new course record, an eight under par 64, as he took a one shot lead after the first round of the WINSTONgolf Senior Open in Germany.
The American, who successfully negotiated European Senior Tour Qualifying School in February, carded three birdies on the front nine and made five gains on the last seven holes to come in in just 31 strokes, holding a narrow lead over New Zealand’s Greg Turner at WINSTONgolf.
Finishing third at the Swiss Seniors Open last week, Dennis found himself tied for the lead on the final hole only to double bogey after hitting his second shot into the grandstand at Golf Club Bad Ragaz.
“This round really gets rid of some of the bad taste from last week,” said Dennis. “That finish was very disappointing, but it happens. I hit a bad shot at the worst time. I still finished third, so I have nothing to complain about apart from one shot.
“I was hurting a little bit at the start of the week but Orlaith the physio did an amazing job in getting me ready to play. I didn’t feel comfortable on this course during my practise round, but I came out and birdied the first and then the third so I made a good start.
“I holed some nice putts in the middle of the round, and it made for a good day.”
Turner, who finished eighth at last year’s WINSTONgolf Senior Open, was pleased to make such a fast start. The Kiwi recovered from two bogeys on the first four holes to card eight birdies and an eagle for a first round of 65.
“I hit some really good shots today,” said Turner. “It’s always nice to get off to a good start. It’s a good round of golf, I don’t shoot seven under very often these days.
“This course suits my eye. It’s an interesting course. Course design is my main thing, so it’s nice to see a course where the owner has been prepared to push the boundaries.”
In sole possession of third place is Welshman Phillip Price, who made seven birdies as he finished his first round on six under par. He made three birdies on the first three holes and also birdied the last for a score of 66.
“It was a lovely state,” said The 2002 Ryder Cup player, “I was thinking low after the first three holes. I putted lovely, and it’s the first time I’ve done so in a long time.”
South Africa’s Chris Williams, who won the season-opening Sharjah Senior Golf Masters presented by Shurooq in the Middle East is fourth on five under par. Magnus P Atlevi, Barry Lane and Santiago Luna, all winners on the European Senior Tour in the last twelve months, share fifth place on four under.