Ruaidhri McGee continues to be a man in form as he sits just inside the top-15 after the opening round of the Challenge Tour’s Le Vaudreuil Golf Challenge in France.
The Irishman almost won in only his second start since 2020 in finishing second at the Open de Bretagne a couple of weeks ago and opened with a three-under 69 at Golf PGA France du Vaudreuil on Thursday.
McGee bogeyed his opening hole, the 10th, but bounced back with a pair of birdies before the turn, although he would give the shot back at the first. But a run of three birdies in five holes, and a bogey-birdie finish, saw him back in the clubhouse at three-under.
That leaves him four shots off Scotland’s Craig Ross, whose seven-under 65 has him one shot clear of the chasing pack, with England’s Matthew Baldwin and France’s Jérôme Lando Casanova his closest challengers after a pair of 66s.
Indeed, Ross will be frustrated his lead isn’t a pair as his only bogey of the day came at the 18th after a run of four straight birdies, with four more giving him the overnight advantage.
Conor Purcell will also carry a sense of anger into the second round as he was sitting comfortably at two-under thanks to four birdies and two bogeys, only for a late double-bogey at the par-four 17th to drop him back down to level-par after a 72.
That has him tied for 60th but just inside the cut line, however John Murphy and Robin Dawson will need to do some work to reach the weekend.
Murphy’s one-over 73 was actually very impressive as he played his front nine in five-over, closing with back-to-back double-bogeys, but four birdies in five holes from the 13th dragged him back into the mix.
And it was a similar story for Dawson, who finished one shot further down with a 74 but also fought back from five-over at the turn, three birdies on his inward half giving him a fighting chance of making the cut.