Kevin Phelan made a fine start in his bid to win back his tour card when he opened with a three under par 69 on the tough Stadium Course in the Final Stage of the European Tour Qualifying School at PGA Catalunya Resort.
The Waterford Castle player is tied for 17th in the six-round battle to finish among the top 25 and ties in Girona, where Denmark's Christian Gloet shot a six under 64 on the Tour Course to led by one from India's world No 74, Anirban Lahiri.
Simon Thornton is tied for 33rd after a two under 68 on the Tour Course with Peter Lawrie joint 47th on one-under after a 71 on the Stadium.
Derry's Michael McGeady recovered from three over after six to shoot a one over 71 on the Tour Course and share 77th while Ballyclare's Gareth Maybin is tied 100th on two-over par after he finished bogey-double bogey for a 74 on the Stadium.
Phelan got off to a great start, picking up birdies at the 12th, 13th and 15th and the first before making his lone bogey of the day at the fourth.
Lawrie was two under par early thanks to an eagle three at the third but then had three birdies and four bogeys in a rollercoaster, seven-hole stretch from the seventh.
He birdied the par-five 15th to get back to two under but bogeyed the tricky 17th in an otherwise encouraging opening round.