Betfred British Masters R3

Renato Paratore keen to stay flawless and join exclusive club

July 22-25
Close House GC, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England
€1,250,000
Round 1, Round 2, Round 4



Italy’s Renato Paratore is in position to join one of golf’s most exclusive clubs after maintaining his flawless form in the Betfred British Masters.

Betfred British Masters R3 - Paratore keen to stay flawless
Italy’s Renato Paratore holds a one-shot lead after 54 holes of the British Masters (Mike Egerton/PA)


Paratore carded a bogey-free round of 66 at Close House and has not dropped a single shot in the first 54 holes of the European Tour’s full return to action for the first time since early March due to the coronavirus pandemic.


The 23-year-old enjoys a one-shot lead over South Africa’s Justin Harding, who also returned a 66 on a day of low scoring, and could become the first player to win a European Tour event without a bogey since Jesper Parnevik in the 1995 Scandinavian Masters.

JT Poston won the Wyndham Championship on the PGA Tour last year without dropping a shot, the first player since Lee Trevino to do so in 1974.


“It’s a good thing to be in contention and I’ll just keep trying to play like this,” said Paratore, who won the Nordea Masters in 2017.


“I had a month after lockdown ended to practice and fortunately I live in Dubai and played a lot of rounds with a friend of mine, Guido Migliozzi, who also plays on the Tour.


“It’s good to practice with someone at the same level as you to keep your game sharp.”

Denmark’s Rasmus Hojgaard is two shots off the lead after also shooting 66, with England’s Dale Whitnell another stroke adrift following a 68.

Paratore held a one-shot lead overnight but had been overtaken before he could hit a ball in anger thanks to a stunning round from England’s Sam Horsfield, whose 61 set a new course record.

Betfred British Masters R3 - Paratore keen to stay flawless
Italy’s Renato Paratore holds a one-shot lead in the British Masters (Mike Egerton/PA)


Horsfield only made the halfway cut with a shot to spare but raced to the turn in 30 with four birdies and an eagle and also eagled the 10th to raise the prospect of just the second 59 in European Tour history.

A run of five straight pars effectively put that out of reach but he nevertheless finished the round in style with a birdie on the 16th and a remarkable third eagle of the day on the par-five 17th.

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“I actually never thought about a 59 until walking up the 18th fairway,” Horsfield said. “I missed a couple of putts on 13 and 14 from 12, 15 feet and I said to my caddie walking up 18, ‘I may as well hole it and try to shoot 59’.

“I didn’t do that but I had it going today, which was nice. I felt like the first two days I was maybe pushing a bit too hard as I haven’t played a tournament in four months.

“I spoke to a few friends last night and they said, ‘dude just go out there and play like you were playing at home, it’s literally the same’. So that’s what I tried to do today and I think it worked.”

Horsfield, who is based in Florida and revealed his best friend had tested positive for Covid-19 during the pandemic, is seeking a first European Tour title and believes he is up to the task.



“I do feel ready to win,” Horsfield added. “We’ve got qualification for the US Open (from the first five ‘UK Swing’ events) and that’s one of my main goals, to play my way into that.”

England’s Jack Senior also enjoyed a surge through the field to eight under par thanks to a 63 which included a hole-in-one from 176 yards on the 14th.

However, tournament host and club member Lee Westwood, who was in the first group out at 7.55am, was unable to get in on the act and struggled to a 72 to slip back to level par.


Pos.
Player
To Par
R1
R2
R3
Total
1
Renato Paratore
-16
65
66
66
197
2
Justin Harding
-15
69
63
66
198
3
Rasmus Højgaard
-14
66
67
66
199
4
Dale Whitnell
-13
68
64
68
200
T5
Ashley Chesters
-12
67
66
68
201
Sam Horsfield
-12
70
70
61
201
7
Robert Rock
-11
69
66
67
202
T8
Jonathan Caldwell
-10
67
69
67
203
Adrian Meronk
-10
69
68
66
203
Ben Stow
-10
67
68
68
203
T11
Oliver Fisher
-9
65
69
70
204
Jack Senior
-9
71
70
63
204
Andy Sullivan
-9
68
69
67
204
T14
Richard Bland
-8
69
70
66
205
Jens Fahrbring
-8
68
69
68
205
Pedro Figueiredo
-8
66
69
70
205
Ryan Fox
-8
67
67
71
205
Calum Hill
-8
67
66
72
205
Matthew Jordan
-8
68
68
69
205
Rikard Karlberg
-8
69
70
66
205
Eddie Pepperell
-8
67
69
69
205
Aaron Rai
-8
69
70
66
205
Jordan Smith
-8
69
69
67
205
T24
Adrian Otaegui
-7
73
65
68
206
Garrick Porteous
-7
65
71
70
206
Robin Roussel
-7
69
68
69
206
Lars van Meijel
-7
69
68
69
206
T28
Laurie Canter
-6
70
68
69
207
Gregory Havret
-6
70
68
69
207
David Horsey
-6
70
69
68
207
Scott Jamieson
-6
70
69
68
207
Miguel Angel Jiménez
-6
68
71
68
207
Pablo Larrazabal
-6
67
71
69
207
Guido Migliozzi
-6
71
70
66
207
Clement Sordet
-6
69
67
71
207
Graeme Storm
-6
71
69
67
207
Johannes Veerman
-6
69
71
67
207
38
Adri Arnaus
-5
70
69
69
208
T39
Alexander Björk
-4
68
72
69
209
Ignacio Elvira Mijares
-4
71
68
70
209
David Law
-4
64
69
76
209
Niklas Lemke
-4
70
70
69
209
Benjamin Poke
-4
70
68
71
209
Alvaro Quiros
-4
69
69
71
209
Jack Singh Brar
-4
67
70
72
209
Scott Vincent
-4
69
72
68
209
Jeff Winther
-4
70
67
72
209
T48
Aaron Cockerill
-3
66
71
73
210
Sean Crocker
-3
67
74
69
210
Paul Dunne
-3
71
70
69
210
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño
-3
72
69
69
210
Mikko Korhonen
-3
71
69
70
210
Romain Langasque
-3
70
71
69
210
Jake McLeod
-3
69
70
71
210
Andrea Pavan
-3
69
72
69
210
Matthieu Pavon
-3
71
69
70
210
Haydn Porteous
-3
71
69
70
210
Richie Ramsay
-3
69
71
70
210
Antoine Rozner
-3
72
67
71
210
Jason Scrivener
-3
70
69
71
210
Matthew Southgate
-3
70
70
70
210
Toby Tree
-3
69
67
74
210
T63
Dave Coupland
-2
70
71
70
211
Daan Huizing
-2
73
67
71
211
T65
Grant Forrest
-1
70
71
71
212
Marcus Kinhult
-1
69
69
74
212
67
Lee Westwood
E
70
71
72
213
68
Lee Slattery
1
66
74
74
214
69
Joachim B. Hansen
4
70
70
77
217
70
Brandon Stone
7
71
70
79
220
The Following Players Failed To Make The Cut ( -1 )
CUT
Wil Besseling
E
70
72
142
Thomas Bjørn
E
73
69
142
Steven Brown
E
72
70
142
Ben Evans
E
73
69
142
Ross Fisher
E
70
72
142
David Howell
E
74
68
142
Nicolai Højgaard
E
72
70
142
Søren Kjeldsen
E
72
70
142
Carlos Pigem
E
71
71
142
Joel Sjoholm
E
68
74
142
Andrew Willey
E
70
72
142
CUT
Maverick Antcliff
1
70
73
143
Louis De Jager
1
69
74
143
Thomas Detry
1
70
73
143
Bryce Easton
1
72
71
143
Rhys Enoch
1
68
75
143
Bailey Gill
1
74
69
143
Julien Guerrier
1
73
70
143
Maximilian Kieffer
1
70
73
143
Sihwan Kim
1
68
75
143
Edoardo Molinari
1
72
71
143
Chris Paisley
1
72
71
143
Tapio Pulkkanen
1
74
69
143
Adrien Saddier
1
68
75
143
Kalle Samooja
1
72
71
143
Ricardo Santos
1
75
68
143
Cormac Sharvin
1
73
70
143
CUT
Marcus Armitage
2
71
73
144
Jamie Donaldson
2
69
75
144
Scott Hend
2
69
75
144
Paul Lawrie
2
71
73
144
Zander Lombard
2
72
72
144
Richard McEvoy
2
70
74
144
Connor Syme
2
72
72
144
CUT
Dean Burmester
3
73
72
145
Calum Fyfe
3
72
73
145
Raphael Jacquelin
3
73
72
145
Masahiro Kawamura
3
73
72
145
Robin Sciot-Siegrist
3
76
69
145
Callum Shinkwin
3
73
72
145
Julian Suri
3
73
72
145
Darius van Driel
3
73
72
145
CUT
Oliver Farr
4
74
72
146
Francesco Laporta
4
73
73
146
Alexander Levy
4
70
76
146
Lorenzo Scalise
4
73
73
146
Oliver Wilson
4
75
71
146
Min Woo Lee
4
73
73
146
CUT
Alejandro Cañizares
5
77
70
147
Eduardo De la Riva
5
73
74
147
David Drysdale
5
78
69
147
Ewen Ferguson
5
76
71
147
Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez
5
74
73
147
James Morrison
5
70
77
147
CUT
Michael Campbell
6
68
80
148
Justin Walters
6
72
76
148
CUT
Gavin Moynihan
7
73
76
149
Sami Välimäki
7
75
74
149
CUT
Michael Bullen
13
75
80
155
Marc Warren
13
78
77
155
WD
Jason Levermore
4
75
75
WD
Andrew Johnston
4
39
39