Six of Ireland’s 22 aspirants are on course to progress through the First Stage (Section A) of the European Tour Qualifying School.

Lurgan’s Gareth Shaw hit a level par 72 to share second place at windlashed Dundonald as Galway’s Mark O'Sullivan cracked a six-under par 66 at Chart Hills to grab a share of third.

A total of 383 aspiring Tour professionals are vying for approximately 94 places at Second Stage at three Section A venues.

Denmark’s Philip Jacobsen set the standard with a breathtaking opening round of ten under par 62 at Fleesensee Golf Club in Germany to take a four stroke lead from his countryman Knud Storgaard and Finland’s Tuomas Tuovinen.

Of the 132 players in the field at Fleesensee, the top 30 (and all players tied for 30th place) will win a place to Second Stage with Mallow’s Mervyn Owens tied for 15th after a 68.

The same number of players will qualify to Second Stage from Chart Hills Golf Club in England, where Sweden’s Oskar Henningsson fired a brilliant nine under par 63 to lead by two shots England’s Andy Smith in second place after an opening 65.

At Dundonald Links in Scotland, where the top 26 players (and ties) from the 116 starters will move onto Second Stage, England’s Craig Goodfellow was the only player in the field to shoot under par, with his three under 69 an outstanding display of talent given the testing conditions on Scotland’s often brutal west coast.


Chart Hills (Par 72)
Top 30 and ties to qualify
T3 Mark O'Sullivan Irl  66
T16 Gavin McNeill Irl  69;
T41 Glen Robinson Irl  71
T115 Greg Bowden Irl 76, Thomas O'Flynn (AM) Irl 76;
T106 Chris Devlin N.Ire  75;

Dundonald Links (Par 72)
Top 26 and ties to qualify
T2 Gareth Shaw NIr 72;
T11 Justin Kehoe Irl 74;
T20 Mark Murphy Irl 75;
T27 Daniel Sugrue Irl 76;
T33 Barrie Trainor Irl 77, James Fox (AM) Irl  77, Shane Franklin Irl  77, John Kelly Irl 77, Michael Lavelle Irl 77, Mark Staunton 77;
T52 Ted Higgins JNR Irl 78, Michael Collins Irl 78;
T110 Brian McElhinney Irl  86;
T114 Byron Campbell (AM) N.Ire  93.

Fleesensee G & C Club (Par 72)
Top 30 and ties to qualify
T15 Mervyn Owens Irl  68;
T34 Michael McDermott Irl 70.