Seamus Power must step on the gas in Motor City today after opening with a 73 in the Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club.
One of the big local attractions for next week's Dubai Duty Free Irish Open at Lahinch, the West Waterford star (32) knows he could quickly find himself entangled in another battle to keep his card if he misses the cut. Scores
Ranked 122nd in the FedExCup standings, he three-putted the 18th for double-bogey six to trail leader Nate Lashley by ten strokes after a 32-putt day left him tied for 131st with US Open champion, Gary Woodland
Having kept his card by the skin of his teeth last year, Power hit form in the spring but a third missed cut in four starts, and a 14th this year, could see him fall out of the all-important top-125 with just five weeks of the regular season remaining.
Lashley (36) made nine birdies in a nine-under 63 to lead by one stroke from Ryan Armour and Nick Watney with Charles Howell III, Talor Gooch, Chez Reavie, Stewart Cink, Rory Sabbatini, Adam Schenk and Chase Wright tied for fourth after seven-under 65s.
Dustin Johnson birdied his last two holes to post a one-under 71 that still left him tied 101st heading into today’s second round.
Irish struggling at Valderrama
Paul Dunne, Gavin Moynihan and Michael Hoey also have work to do to make the cut in the Andalucia Masters at Valderrama, where Sergio Garcia made a fast start in his bid for a an incredible fourth successive win there.
The Spaniard has been in poor form recently, missing three of his last four cuts, but he loves Valderrama and shot a five-under 66 to lie just a shot behind Frenchman Victor Perez as Irish Open-bound Jon Rahm posted a 69. Scores
"I love this place, there is no doubt about that," Garcia said. "It kind of has something with me that helps me... It's probably the best that I've felt in quite a while."
He's tied for second place with American Sihwan Kim, Swede Anton Karlsson, South African Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Malaysia's Gavin Green.
But it was a tough day for the Irish with Moynihan tied 73rd after a 73 as Hoey shot 74 and Dunne a 75.
Tramore's Robin Dawson was the best of the Irish raiders in the Italian Challenge Open, chiselling out one-under 71 to lie five adrift of South Africa's Bryce Easton and Spain's Carlos Pigem at Terre dei Consoli.
But after shooting 12 rounds in the 60s and racking up three top tens in his last four starts, Ardglass Cormac Sharvin posted a 74 to share 92nd with Derry’s Ruaidhri McGee as Bangor’s Daniel Peacock shot 75 and West Waterford’s Gary Hurley a five-over 77. Scores
Bizarre penalty for Clarke at Notre Dame
Darren Clarke is tied for 101st after incurring an unusual two-shot penalty en route to a three-over 73 on his debut in the US Senior Open at Warren Golf Club in Indiana. Scores
He was one-under after nine holes but made a triple bogey seven at the 10th, incurring a two-stroke penalty when at Clarke’s request, his caddie Bradley Whittle moved a pole containing a permanent bird house that was in his intended line of play.
By having his caddie bend the pole to the right, Clarke improved his line of play in breach of Rule 8.1a (Improving the Line of Play). The poles are immovable obstructions at the Notre Dame venue.
He bogeyed the 111th and 15th before getting a shot back at the par-five 17th, finishing the day 11 strokes behind Steve Stricker and David Toms, who shot eight-under 62s to lead by two strokes from Kirk Triplett and Jery Kelly.
Toms registered 10 birdies – a single-round championship record – and Stricker posted seven birdies and an eagle en route to 8-under-par 62s on the 6,891-yard layout.
The 62s matched the championship record held by Loren Roberts, Triplett and Brandt Jobe. Stricker, who had four consecutive birdies from the eighth, saw his bid for a 61 slide just right of the hole on the 18th. No player has ever shot a 61 in a regular or senior major championship.
Three strokes back at 5 under par are three-time major winner Vijay Singh, Duffy Waldorf and Toru Suzuki, whose round included holing a 133-yard approach shot for an eagle 2 on the 401-yard, par-4 15th hole.
Toms became the first defending champion to hold or share the 18-hole lead, and his first-round score bettered the mark by a defender by six strokes.
Rafferty and McLarnon head European Amateur challenge
In amateur golf, Dundalk's Caolan Rafferty's two-over 74 left him tied 10th, five shots behind England's Harry Hall on three-under at the halfway point in the European Amateur Championship at Diamond Country Club in Austria.
Massereene's Tiarnan McLarnon powered to a joint best of the day 68 to lie a shot further back in 19th with Kilkenny's Mark Power joint 32nd on one-under after a 76.
European Amateur Championship, Diamond CC (Par 72), Austria
After 36 holes
1, H Hall (ENG) 68 68 136; T2 J Ji (NED) 68 69 137, J Long (ENG) 67 70 137, B Windred (AUS) 66 71 137.
Irish — T10, C Rafferty (Dundalk) 67 74 141; T19, T McLarnon (Masssereene) 74 68 142; T32, M Power (Kilkenny) 67 76 143; T39, C Purcell (Portmarnock) 71 73 144; T70, R Mullarney (Galway) 76 71 147; T81, T McKibbin (Holywood) 72 76 148; T96, J Murphy (Kinsale) 76 74 150; T126, R Lester (Hermitage) 76 78 154.