Hamilton goes top with a record 64
Todd Hamilton has equalled the course record and shot his lowest European Tour round at the Volvo Golf Champions.
The latest news from the the Volvo Golf Champions in Bahrain is that former Open champion Todd Hamilton equalled the course record and achieved the lowest 18-hole score of his European Tour career in Saturdays’ third round.
He also joined the logjam on top of the leaderboard for a short spell.
The 45-year-old American had made the halfway cut with only a stroke to spare, but he shrugged it away and charged into a share of the lead with a blistering eight under par 64 that equalled the course record for the Royal Golf Club of Bahrain.
Hamilton, who switched to the European circuit this year after losing his PGA Tour card in the US, briefly found himself part of a six-way tie at the top on 11 under.
That was because Northern Ireland’s Darren Clarke, thanks to a birdie on the opening hole, had also joined overnight pacesetters Peter Hanson, Edoardo Molinari, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Raphael Jacquelin at 11under.
Hamilton won The Open at Royal Troon in 2004, beating Ernie Els in a play-off, but he has struggled in recent seasons.
However, he had a hat-trick of birdies from the 13th, added another on the 17th to turn in 32 and matched that coming home on the front nine by picking up further strokes at the second, fourth, sixth and eighth.
He equalled the record for the Colin Montgomerie-designed course established by Swede Johan Edfors on Thursday and repeated by Scot Stephen Gallacher in the second round on Friday.
Montgomerie himself remained three under with a 72, while Padraig Harrington double-bogeyed the sixth and bogeyed the short next. He did come back with two birdies, but was well down the field as well on four under.
Ian Poulter mixed four birdies with two bogeys to stand at five under with one to play.
Clarke added further birdies on the third and fifth and at 13 under was now one in front of Hanson, Edfors, Argentina’s Ricardo Gonzalez and South African James Kingston.
Jimenez and Hamilton at this stage were among those two behind, while Molinari and Jacquelin had slipped back a shot to 10 under.
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