Scottish duo set sights on chasing down runaway leader Rasmus Hojgaard in French Open
Dominating Dane Rasmus Hojgaard set a new 36-hole record in the Cazoo Open de France but Scottish duo Bob MacIntyre and Grant Forrest are not giving up the chase at Le Golf National outside Paris.
Hojgaard, who has already landed three DP World Tour titles at the age of just 21, sits six shots clear of the field after backing up his course record-equalling 62 on Thursday with an equally-impressive 65 in the second circuit.
The dazzling display at the 2018 Ryder Cup venue has left him sitting on 15-under-par, having made a course with lots of potential trouble, particularly watery graves, look ridiculously easy.
“The course still plays tricky,” insisted Hojgaard after signing for seven birdies and one bogey on day two. “I just played very well again today. I hit a lot of greens, gave myself a lot of chances and kept the bogeys away more or less, so it’s all good.”
He’s now determined to finish off the job as he bids to taste victory for the fourth season in a row on the circuit.
“I’m not going to change much the next couple of days,” insisted the leader. “It’s been working fine so far, so I need to go out there and be patient, limit the mistakes and make a few birdies.”
Though in the top ten, MacIntyre and Forrest are both sitting ten shots behind after signing for 70 and 66 respectively in their second circuits.
“I’m in position,” said MacIntyre, who is bidding to make it back-to-back wins after landing the DS Automobiles Italian Open at Marco Simone near Rome last weekend.
“Obviously Rasmus is a bit ahead, but I am going to go out there with the same gameplan, stay aggressive and, who knows, maybe I can shoot a low number. Seeing Rasmus’s scores lets me know the scores are there, so it lets me be a bit more aggressive.”
Forrest is also determined to chase down the leader over the closing 36 holes. “When someone’s had two rounds like those, if they keep playing like that, there’s not much you can do and the rest of us are probably playing for second,” said the 2021 Hero Open winner.
“But, at the same time, it’s one of those golf courses where anything can happen, especially the finish. I’m definitely not counting myself out if it, but, if Rasmus continues like that, it’s a little bit out of our control.”
MacIntyre signed for 17 pars and one birdie. “At the start, I was flat and I was tired, but I was playing smart as I knew I wasn’t feeling right,” said the Oban man.
“Then late on I was starting to feel my swing a bit more, the strike was there and I had lots of chances that were lipping out or running across the edges, but that’s golf.”
Forrest finished birdie-birdie to make up for a bogey-bogey end to his first round. “I think it would be good if we could play tests like this every week as it really separates the guys that are playing good golf,” he said.
“There’s a lot of water out there and there are times you’ve just got to step up and hit golf shots - there’s no hiding.”
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