Power off to a fast start in Honda Classic
Seamus Power at West Waterford

Seamus Power at West Waterford

Seamus Power showed his love of PGA National when he had just 23 putts and birdied two of his last three holes to open with a two-under-par 68 in the Honda Classic.

The West Waterford man finished fifth on the Champion Course at PGA National in 2014 Web.com Tour Q-School Finals to take his first big step towards the PGA Tour.

Just over two years later he's back at the Palm Beach Gardens venue for this week's $6,100,000 tour stop and hoping to take a giant step towards retaining his PGA Tour card.

As Pádraig Harrington and Graeme McDowell failed to take advantage of a course softened by heavy overnight rain, carding two over 72s, Power made an eagle, three birdies and three bogeys in his 68

He ended the day tied for 24th, four shots behind Cody Gribble and Wesley Bryan, who shot six-under-par 64s to lead by one stroke from Martin Kaymer and Anirban Lahiri.

Power got off to a poor start, failing to get up and down for par from sand left at the first. But he made amends at the third, holing a bunker shot for an eagle three.

He bogeyed the tricky fourth, where he missed the fairway and overshot the green. But there was to be just one more dropped shot after that - at the 11th, where he found rough from the tee and opted to lay up rather than taking on the green over water. 

A birdie at the tough sixth, where he hit 313-yard drive and a fine 140-yard approach to 12 feet, was a huge gain against the field.

Despite his dropped shot at the 11th, Power played well coming home and after a par-three at the 15th, he birdied the 16th from 26 feet, then parred the 17th to play the Bear Trap in one under, before picking off another birdie at the last from eight feet.

While he missed 50 percent of fairways and missed ten greens, Power was clinical around the greens and had just 23 putts, helped by that hole-out at the third.

Harrington and McDowell both had three birdies, three bogeys and a double bogey six at the 11th in their 72s and are tied for 96th.