Tramore's Robin Dawson joined David Carey and Cian McNamara in making a superb start to the First Qualifying Stage of the European Tour Q-School.
Playing in the weather-delayed Section C qualifier at Ribagolfe in Portugal, the 21-year old opened with five birdies on the front nine to be out in 31, then made two bogeys and a birdie coming home to sign for a four-under 68.
With 13 players in the 108-man field unable to complete their rounds due to darkness, Dawson is tied for third with Castleknock native Carey in the race to make the top 21 and ties who progress to the Second Stage.
An impressive birdie machine in the recent Irish challenge at Mount Wolseley, Carey made four birdies in an outward 34 and birdied two par fives coming home to match Dawson's 68.
The pair are eight strokes behind Spain's Sebastian García Rodriguez while Narin & Portnoo's Brendan McCarroll is tied 26th, just one stroke outside the qualifying places, after carding five birdies and four bogeys in a 71.
Monkstown professional McNamara has decided that he should always be aiming to compete at the Q-School.
And his hard work paid off in the opening round at Golf d’Hardelot in France as he made seven birdies in a three-under 68 to share 12th place.
With the top 21 and ties also progressing at the French venue, the 31-year old former South of Ireland and Junior Open champion is just two strokes behind leaders Jack Harrison of England and Spaniard Marcos Pastor.
Fellow Limerick man Tim Rice, 40, made just one birdie in a three over 74 and lies joint 71st, six shots outside the qualifying places with three rounds to go.