Open de France: Former Ryder Cup star Nicolas Colsaerts shares halfway lead
Himself was given a huge lift in his bid to keep his European Tour card after he made a share of the halfway lead by nicolas Colsaerts.
Colsaerts arrived in Le Golf National ranked 114th four places outside the mark, to Dubai on the Race to retain complete playing rights for next season, with following weeks Portugal Experts and just this weeks event remaining in the 2019 effort.
But the Belgian defied the strain along with the cool conditions over the Albatross route to fire a high-quality 66 and hit nine under, although he cost himself the lead going into the weekend after he pulled off a long-iron to the water at the last and was not able to save par.
Colsaerts is tied at the very top with South African George Coetzee, who birdied his final hole to post a 68, while Richie Ramsay (69) is only two strokes behind and two-time important champion Martin Kaymer can also be in contention on five under par.
Former Ryder Cup celebrity Colsaerts, who is with no European Tour win because the Volvo World Match Play in 2012, fought to make much happen in a blustery front two until he turned to the outright lead with five birdies in six holes after the flip.
But the 36-year-old pulled his tee-shot too far left in the past, and had to settled for a 66 and a bogey. He admitted he was happy because he made the turn, which left the half more comfortable for its players, to observe the wind drop.
It was really hard when we began, he said. The front two was pretty difficult as it had been blowing quite hard and out of a slightly different direction than yesterday. Then it calmed down a bit on the back nine.
I made several long putts that gave me momentum to the back nine, that was fine, and then the remainder was free-flowing. So yeah, fairly pleased with the way I finished these first two rounds.
Coetzee was out in the final group of the day by the teeand he also made a fantastic start with a birdie at 10 until he followed a bogey having a double-bogey at the short 16th later he rinsed his tee .
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However he was another to compile a sustained burst of scoring on the front nine as he birdied five of the first six holes then atoned for a bogey in eight with another birdie at eight to cap a 68 and secure a share of the clubhouse lead with Colsaerts.
Many felt Kurt Kitayama could be hard to catch after the in-form American returned a 68 to set the early goal at eight below, while Ramsay wouldve been closer to the leaders had it not been for a bad start, and end, to his 69.
The veteran Scot made just 1 par on the front , which he began with a double-bogey six before mixing five birdies with two bogeys in a vibrant, external 35, however, Ramsay subsequently enjoyed a steady run of pars before picking up shots at 14 and 15, only to err again at the past to slip to seven under.
Kaymer cancel six birdies with four bogeys in an irregular 69 which leaves him nicely placed on five underneath as he chases his first triumph as the 2014 US Open, and hes level with the luckless Gavin Moynihan, who endured a challenging break over the par-three 16th.
The Irishman, languishing at 162nd on the Race to Dubai, thought he had won a BMW i8, worth over #130,000, when his arrow-straight eight-iron pitched at the hole, but his ball bounced from this cup and settled towards the back of the green.
Meanwhile, the round of the day belonged to seeing American Hudson Swafford, whose 65 featured four along with four birdies but also a 3 eagles lost shots.