McGowan is early leader at Madrid Masters

Oct. 6, 2011 at 2:02 PM

ALCALA DE HENARES, Spain, Oct. 6 (UPI) -- Ross McGowan, who had five consecutive birdies in one stretch Thursday, owns the lead after one round of the European Tour's Madrid Masters.

McGowan, whose only European Tour title came at the Madrid Masters two years ago, had 10 birdies and two bogeys in carding an 8-under-par 64.

Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, who also strung together five consecutive birdies, is one stroke back at 7-under. He's tied with Lorenzo Gagli, who birdied his final three holes, and Brett Rumford for second at 65.

Edoardo Molinari is alone in fifth at 6-under with a crowd of nine golfers tied at 5-under.

McGowan opened with birdies on his first two holes and was 3-under after four. A bogey at the sixth hole dropped him back before he ran off five straight birdies over Nos. 9-13.

He had another bogey at 15 but birdies at 16 and 18 left him alone in the lead. He hit his approach on in the 577-yard, par-5 to within 2 feet for an easy putt for birdie.

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