SANTO DA SERRA, Madeira Islands (AP) – Portugal’s Ricardo Santos birdied seven holes and led by one stroke after the first round of the Madeira Islands Open on Thursday.
Santos, a 24-year-old playing in his seventh European Tour event since his debut five years ago, was 1-over par after four holes but birdied five in a row at the hilltop Santo da Serra course to finish with 6-under 66.
Former Ryder Cup player Peter Baker and Notah Begay of the United States were tied for second with 67.
Baker, who lost his European Tour card three years ago and relies mostly on invitations, was making his first start of the season. Begay, who advanced through the qualifying school last year, did not drop a stroke in his round.
Four players were tied at 4 under. Defending champion Jean Van de Velde shot a 75.