SALES of honeycomb ice cream in Barwon Heads are expected to soar after Queensland’s Jake McLeod revealed it was the secret to his stunning course record 61 on 13th Beach’s Creek Course to grab the early second round lead at the Vic Open.
The 22-year-old finished in a blaze of glory picking up five shots in the space of four holes on his way to a 36-hole total of 13-under and a one-shot lead over former New Zealand Open winner Dimi Papadatos.
In the concurrent women’s tournament, Spain’s Belen Mozo fired the best score of the morning, a seven-under 66 on the more difficult Beach Course to set the pace ahead of the afternoon wave.
McLeod, a contemporary of PGA Tour player Cameron Smith in his amateur days, revealed he had discovered an ice cream shop in Barwon Heads early in tournament week, joking it was the secret to his good play.
“Go the honeycomb,” he recommended when pressed for details.
JAKE MCLEOD DISCUSSES HIS 11-UNDER 61:
But McLeod’s score was no laughing matter, the 11-under effort eclipsing the previous course record by two shots.
Hitting off the 10th tee, McLeod made a pedestrian par at the opening hole before adding back-to-back birdies at 11 and 12.
A bogey at 14 acted as a motivator for the third year professional who went to the turn with a birdie-eagle-birdie run to be five-under for the day.
Two pars to start the inward half suggested his run might have slowed but McLeod was far from done with a stretch of birdie-eagle-birdie-birdie to post a back nine 30 and race to the top of the standings.
“That’s a first course record for me,” he beamed after the round.
“Just played unbelievably today, hit the ball so good and rolled in some putts.
“It was really nice.”
McLeod said a run of recent good form was down mostly to a change in his mental approach.
“The last few months has been pretty good for me,” he said.
“I think, mentally, I’m just a little bit better now, course strategy is a lot better and just sticking to my game plan and feeling very confident.”
As the afternoon wave took to the course, Papadatos and McLeod had opened a gap on the field with Adam Bland and Deyen Lawson sharing third place at 10-under, two shots behind Papadatos.
Overnight leader David Bransdon began his second round with four straight pars to remain eight-under and five shots off the pace.
Overnight leader in the women’s event, Laura Davies, had a horror start to her round dropping five shots in the opening eight holes to fall off the pace.
Norway’s Nicole Broch Larsen was setting the pace in the afternoon, getting to nine-under for the tournament through six holes to lead a log-jam of players at seven-under.
Among those was Mozo, who started her round with a bogey but knuckled down to go to the turn three-under for the day and add four more gains on the inward half.
Also in the clubhouse at seven-under are American Amelia Lewis, who matched Mozo's 66, and England’s Hannah Burke.
BELEN MOZO TALKS ABOUT HER 7-UNDER 66:
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