Wizard of Oz Rory McIlroy roared into a share of third in the Australian Masters.
Inspired by Aaron Baddeley, the teenager blasted a three under par 69 at Huntingdale to get to within just four shots of leader Robert Allenby on five under par.
And he confessed that playing partner Baddeley, who is just one stroke adrift of Allenby after a superb 66, gave him the momentum to charge up the leaderboard.
Chasing his rookie win, McIlroy beamed: "I’m very happy. I have hit a lot of good shots and made a lot of chances for birdies. I have left a few out there but as long as I am making the chances then I am happy. I am looking forward to the weekend.
"It was fantastic playing with Aaron. He's a really good guy. I met him on Tuesday night at the gala dinner and he gave me a lift home, which is pretty cool. He is a great player.
"As I said, he played very well today and I fed off that, trying to keep up with him. We got off to a good start.
"I think that whenever you play with players who are better than you, you try and up your game a bit. That's what I tried to do today."
McIlroy opened with a birdie four at the 10th and while he bogeyed the 11th and 18th, he birdied the 14th and 17th to get to three under par.
After three birdies and just one bogey on the back nine, the Holywood kind confessed that he has been picking Baddeley's brain about his career.
The Aussie, 26, was also a teenage sensation, storming to victory in 1999 Australian Open at just 18 years of age.
He went on to defend the title as a professional the following year and is now ranked 18th in the world.
McIlroy revealed: "Yesterday we chatted about how he spent the year on the Nationwide Tour and then got onto the PGA Tour.
"We were talking about stuff like that and what he learned over the course of seven years as a pro. We were chatting about normal stuff and that cropped up in conversation a couple of times."
Baddeley was impressed by McIlroy's approach to the game, confessing that the Belfast kid was superior to him in several departments already.
Baddeley said: "He has a great game. He has a lot of good things in his golf swing. He is a really nice putter. He hits a lot of good putts.
"If they don't go in, they are burning the edge. He is a great kid. We had a great time out there together.
"He is a better ball striker than I was at that age. He has a really good golf swing. I really like it."
McIlroy is hoping that he can use his trip Down Under to become an even better player and explained that he will also play in South Africa and the Middle East over the next few months.
He said: "I've got to travel a lot over the past couple of year playing amateur golf. I have been down in Melbourne once and in Sydney last year for the Aussie Open.
"The more experience you can get on different courses in different grasses and different conditions, the better.
"As a golfer you need to experience different conditions. That has been beneficial for me over the past couple of years."
If he wins this week, McIlroy will become the youngest winner in the history of the European Tour.
But he knows it won't be easy on a fast-running Huntingdale links.
McIlroy said: "I think it will be a little firmer and a little faster. It depends on what the wind does. I played a practice round this week and played the 10th hole downwind and then turned to 14 and played it completely downwind.
"The wind can switch a lot and it can get very trick my at times. But if it stays like this, it will be good scoring conditions for the weekend."
Leader Allenby is eying his third gold jacket in six years after maintaining his first round one shot lead.
Champion in 2003 and 2005, Allenby followed his first round 67 with a 68 to move to nine under par.
He said: "It would have been nice to stay at ten under because my goal is to shoot five under each day so tomorrow I'll have to shoot six.
"I think 20 under would win the tournament – unless Aaron goes out there and does something silly."
McIlroy is tied for third with Australians Terry Pilkadaris, Rick Kulacz and Scott Strange and Swede Daniel Chopra.
Damien McGrane was tied for 27th on one under par after rounds of 72 and 71.