ST. ANDREWS, Scotland. With bad weather ahead, golfers in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship were looking to score fast on the legendary Scottish courses hosting the DP World Tour event.
No one did better than Romain Langasque on the most famous course.
The 27-year-old Frenchman set a course record at the Old Course at St Andrews by hitting 11 under-61s in the first round on Thursday, including a second nine 28 with five birds and an eagle on his last six holes. home of golf.
“I never thought I would have a course record at St. Andrews,” said Langask, who finished 272nd. “But now my name is on the board.”
Full Alfred Dunhill Links Championship Results
For Langask, it was a poor career round – his previous best finish on the DP World Tour was 63 – giving him a good opportunity to challenge for a second title and a first at the Wales Open in 2020.
However, more difficult tests are not far off.
The forecast for Friday is heavy rain and strong winds of over 40 mph, which will be a major test for the 168 players on the field who are scheduled to play St Andrews, Kingsbarns and Carnoustie over the first three days. The fourth and final round takes place in St. Andrews.
Shotgun shooting starts Friday at 8:30am local time to avoid the worst weather and Rory McIlroy, ranked 2nd, is among those gearing up for a 4 to 68 shooting at Carnoustie, widely regarded as the most difficult of three courses.
“In general, you won’t get Carnoustie in easier conditions, so I feel like I left a few throws behind,” said McIlroy, who spooked his last hole. “You don’t want to chase what looks like really bad weather tomorrow, so at least I’ll put a red number on the board and have some shots to play with.”
McIlroy will play his second round at Kingsbarns, which he believes is the easiest of the three fields to play in good weather and the most difficult in bad weather because it is the most exposed to the elements.
Most of the best results came at St. Andrews and Kingsbarns, where another Frenchman – Frédéric Lacroix – dropped 10 under 62 without ghosts to come in second, one stroke behind Langasque, approaching the end of the first round.
Spaniard Nacho Elvira also started in Kingsbarns and was also not afraid in his 64th.
However, Langask took the lead after a round that started in 10th place and with a ghost on the second hole of the day. He hit heads on the next hole after driving over the green and hitting a 52-footer.
Langask also finished fifth in par-5 before closing out with four reeds in a row to equal Ross Fischer’s 61 shots at the same event in 2017.
“The game was good,” he said, smiling, “but I didn’t feel like I hit 11 under.”