Bernhard Langer shot a 4-under 66 Saturday for a 1-stroke lead over Fred Couples heading into the final round of the Senior British Open in Turnberry, Scotland.
Couples had seven birdies in a round of 64, while Peter Fowler finished with a 65 to trail the leader by 2 shots.
“I’m just happy to be in the hunt with 18 holes to play,” said Langer, who won this title two years ago at Carnoustie. “There’s a lot of guys in with a chance, so I know I’ll have to shoot one of the lower scores to win.”
Americans John Cook (66) and overnight leader Gary Hallberg (73) joined England’s Barry Lane (66) at 4 shots back.
Couples had birdies at Nos. 1, 3 and 7, 8, 9. On the back nine, he had two birdies and dropped one shot at the 14th.
“It was a very, very good day,” Couples said. “Once I got going, I didn’t miss many shots. I hit my irons solid and when I hit them close, I made the putt.”
Tom Watson (66) and Tom Lehman (73) were 7 shots behind Langer.
On a day of low scoring despite strong wind and some showers, Langer and Couples each reached the turn in 30.
Langer birdied the first, fourth, sixth and ninth, eagled the long seventh and dropped a stroke at the fifth. He had nine straight 4s on the back nine, bogeying both the par 3s before a birdie on the long 17th.
Robert Garrigus broke the 54-hole scoring record at the Canadian Open that was set more than a half-century ago by Arnold Palmer.
Now he needs to finish like the King.
On rain-softened greens that took the bite out of Hamilton Golf & Country Club in Ancaster, Ontario, Garrigus combined his power with some timely putts for a 6-under 64 on Saturday that gave him a 1-shot lead over William McGirt, who lost ground despite a 66.
Scott Piercy had a 67 and was another shot behind.
Garrigus was at 16-under 194, 1 shot better than Palmer in 1955 at Weston Golf & Country Club outside Toronto, and matched two years ago by Dean Wilson at St. George’s Golf & Country Club. Palmer went on to win the 1955 Canadian Open for the first of his 62 titles on the PGA Tour.
Garrigus will be going for his second win.
He was fortunate to escape with par, not to mention his health, on the final hole when his 3-iron off the tee ran out 290 yards and just into the hazard short of the bridge. He had to clip the ball to avoid smacking the bridge and damaging his wrist, and the wedge came out perfectly.
Scott Stallings birdied his last two holes for a 63 and was 4 shots behind, along with Chris Kirk (63) and Bo Van Pelt (67).
American Stacy Lewis birdied the final hole for a 1-over 73 and a share of the lead with South Korea’s Inbee Park after the third round of the Evian Masters in Evian-Les-Bains, France. Park had a 70 to match Lewis, a two-time winner this year, at 11-under 205.
Natalie Gulbis, the 2007 winner for her lone LPGA Tour title, was a stroke back along with Karrie Webb and 17-year-old amateur Hyo Joo Kim. Gulbis had a 68, Webb shot 67, and Kim 69. Cristie Kerr was 9 under after a 67.
Bernd Wiesberger had a 7-under 65 to win the Austrian Open in Atzenbrugg, Austria, by 3 strokes for his second European Tour title.
The Austrian, who was 4 strokes off the lead going into the final round, finished with an overall 19-under 269. Shane Lowry (66) of Ireland and Thomas Levet (68) of France tied for second.