Former Ryder Cup player Oliver Wilson, nine times a runner-up on the European Tour without ever winning, has given himself another chance to change that.
With all the circuit's current star names over in America, Wilson shot a six-under-par 66 on Thursday to be in joint-second place after the opening round of the Madeira Islands Open. Spaniard Alvaro Velasco leads after a 64 containing seven birdies in the last 12 holes.
Among those alongside Wilson is compatriot Tommy Fleetwood, the 21-year-old who won last season's Challenge Tour and who at 192nd in the world is the highest-ranked player in the field.
Also in with 66s were Swedes Joakim Lagergren and Magnus Carlsson and Dane Morten Orum Madsen.
Wilson, who did not have a bogey, has slumped to 475th on the rankings and lost his tour card last year. The Mansfield golfer then chose to miss the qualifying school, preferring instead to clear up some health issues.
Ben Parker, who like Fleetwood hails from Southport, made it a six-way tie for second, but Velasco took the first-day honours.
The 30-year-old won the 2010 Challenge Tour, but lost his card on the main circuit last year.
"I was consistent all day and putted very well," Velasco told the official European Tour website. "If you hit it in the right spots the course is quite easy, but if you're in the wrong place it's easy to get in trouble.
"I can't remember the last time I made such a good start to a tournament.''
Fleetwood's opening effort was a 14-stroke improvement on his opening 80 in the Spanish Open last week.
"I've been saying for a while that I'm very close to playing great,'' he said. "The longest putt I had for birdie all round was about four feet."
Three-time tour winner Nick Dougherty, who made only one cut last year and was another to lose his card, had a 69, while Bradley Dredge, who shot 60 in winning the same event in 2003, had a 72 like fellow Welshman Phillip Price.
Collated first round scores in the Madeira Islands Open, Santo da Serra, Madeira, Portugal
(Gbr & Irl unless stated, par 72):
64 Alvaro Velasco (Spa)
66 Magnus A Carlsson (Swe), Oliver Wilson, Tommy Fleetwood, Joakim Lagergren (Swe), Ben Parker, Morten Orum Madsen (Den)
67 Colm Moriarty, Charlie Ford, Hans Peter Bacher (Aut), Warren Abery (Rsa), Matthew Baldwin, Andreas Harto (Den)
68 Sihwan Kim (Nor), Richard Bland, Adam Gee, Ricardo Santos (Por), Lloyd Saltman, Andy Sullivan, Knut Borsheim (Nor), David Dixon
69 Carlos Del Moral (Spa), Mikael Lundberg (Swe), Gary Orr, Sion E Bebb, Andre Bossert (Swi), Thomas Norret (Den), James Heath, Raul Quiros (Spa), Alastair Forsyth, Markus Brier (Aut), Alex Haindl (Rsa), Nick Dougherty, Chris Paisley, Seve Benson, Jamie McLeary, Sam Walker, Tim Sluiter (Ned), Antonio Sobrinho (Por), Pedro Oriol (Spa)
70 Johan Wahlqvist (Swe), Anthony Snobeck (Fra), Jose-Filipe Lima (Por), Joachim B Hansen (Den), Jamie Elson, Daniel Denison, Andrew McArthur, Alessandro Tadini (Ita), Federico Colombo (Ita), Benjamin Hebert (Fra), Marco Crespi (Ita), Roope Kakko (Fin), Shiv Kapur (Ind), Jarmo Sandelin (Swe), Julien Guerrier (Fra), Justin Walters (Rsa), Andrea Perrino (Ita), Christopher Doak
71 John Parry, Ake Nilsson (Rsa), Lasse Jensen (Den), Robert Coles, Benn Barham, Scott Pinckney (USA), Matt Ford, Pierre Relecom (Bel), Lloyd Kennedy, Raymond Russell, Santiago Luna (Spa), Michael Lorenzo-Vera (Fra), Daniel Gaunt (Aus), Francois Delamontagne (Fra), Edouard Dubois (Fra), Scott Drummond, Maarten Lafeber (Ned), Christophe Brazillier (Fra), Steven Tiley, Sam Hutsby, Andrew Marshall, Adrien Bernadet (Fra), Thomas Feyrsinger (Aut)
72 Chris Gane, Byeong-Hun An (Kor), Klas Eriksson (Swe), Nicolas Meitinger (Ger), Antonio Rosado (Por), Jordi Garcia (Spa), Antti Ahokas (Fin), Victor Riu (Fra), Adrian Otaegui (Spa), Bradley Dredge, Craig Lee, Garry Houston, Mark Tullo (Chi), Daniel Brooks, Phillip Price, Matthew Southgate, Daniel Vancsik (Arg), Taco Remkes (Ned), Reinier Saxton (Ned)
73 Martin Erlandsson (Swe), Robert Dinwiddie, Anders Schmidt Hansen (Den), Steven Jeppesen (Swe), Joao Carlota (Por), Steven O'Hara, Emiliano Grillo (Arg), Nuno Henriques (Por), Stephen Dodd, Niclas Fasth (Swe), Olly Whiteley, Bjorn Akesson (Swe), Augustin Domingo (Spa), Carl Suneson (Spa), Phillip Archer, Florian Praegant (Aut), Jean-Francois Lucquin (Fra)
74 Andrew Johnston, Stuart Davis, Baptiste Chapellan (Fra), Fredrik Henge (Swe), Rafael Echenique (Arg), Sebastian Buhl (Ger), Darren Fichardt (Rsa), Paul Dwyer, Wil Besseling (Ned), Tyrone Ferreira (Rsa), Matteo Delpodio (Ita), Charles-edouard Russo (Fra), Chris Lloyd
75 Tyrrell Hatton, Francis McGuirk, Espen Kofstad (Nor), Andrew Parr (Can), Peter Gustafsson (Swe), Hugo Santos (Por)
76 Andrew Tampion (Aus), Jamie Moul, Matthew Nixon, Pelle Edberg (Swe), Tiago Cruz (Por), Callum Macaulay, Roland Steiner (Aut), Borja Etchart (Spa), Simon Thornton, Sam Little
77 Michiel Bothma (Rsa), Maximilian Kieffer (Ger), Scott Strange (Aus), Simon Wakefield
78 Goncalo Pinto (Por), Dara Ford
79 Jordan Gibb, Bernd Ritthammer (Ger)
82 Elidio Costa (Por)
86 Edgar Rodrigues (Por)