Fresh off a first victory in four years last week at the Acciona Open de España presented by Madrid, the home hero dropped just a single shot to go with four birdies in windy conditions over the already notoriously tough layout.
And he admitted that you cannot approach the 1997 Ryder Cup venue like you do most golf courses.
"It's already an intimidating and tough course when there's no wind, with wind it just makes it all that tougher," he said.
"But in the end you just accept it is what it is: it's just going to be hard, the wind is going to switch on you, you're going to end up in some tricky spots.
Three pars in a row equals one birdie. That's what you have in mind and that's how I try to deal with this course
"You just know it's a different type of tournament where three pars in a row equals one birdie. That's what you have in mind and that's how I try to deal with this course and other courses that are as tough as this one."
The 37-year-old took advantage of the par five 11th and then holed an 18 footer on the 14th before dropping a shot on the next.
An approach to seven feet on the first was followed by a 14 footer on the third and he parred his way home to finish at three under.
"I felt I did everything pretty good," he said. "If I were to highlight something I would say putting was really good, I had a lot of testers like normal on a windy day with fast greens and except for one I pretty much made everything inside eight, ten feet.
"That definitely felt like it was the difference for me."