Defending champion Tim Hart flirted with his own course record while Vic PGA winner Chris Wood posted two eagles to earn a share of the lead at the halfway mark of the Moranbah Mini Earthmovers Pro-Am at Moranbah Golf Club on Saturday.
The first in the 10-round Onsite Rental Group Mining Towns Series to be played throughout North Queensland, the picturesque Moranbah layout was buffeted by cold southerly winds that made scoring difficult early but by the afternoon the course was ripe for the picking.
Fresh from his victory at the Hidden Valley Whitsundays North Queensland Series, prolific Adidas Pro-Am Series winner Hart bolted out of the blocks, making eagle at his opening hole – the 319-metre par-4 fifth – and following it with three straight birdies to be 5-under through four holes.
The Queenslander’s own course record of 13-under 59 looked in severe danger when he reached 9-under through just 12 holes but he was unable to carry that momentum through the entirety of his round, playing his final six holes in 1-over par to post 8-under 64 and a share of the lead.
“I got off to a flying start and I was thinking I could give the course record a nudge,” Hart was left to lament.
There were plenty of fireworks in Wood’s round of 64 also including eagles at two of the Moranbah par 5s, the 495m second and 10th and five birdies.
“I drove the ball well today and made the most of my chances on the par 5s,” Wood said.
The 2017 Vic PGA champion, Damien Jordan finished two shots behind Hart and Wood with a bogey-free round of 6-under 66 with Lucas Higgins and Shae Wools-Cobb a further shot back at 5-under 67.
Hart and Wood now share the lead in the Onsite Rental Group Mining Towns Series which will be played over 10 rounds across the five Mining Towns clubs.