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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Clarke Goes 3 Shots Clear in Open

TROON, Scotland -- There was no tempest at Troon and no stopping Darren Clarke on Friday in the second round of the British Open.


With only a wisp of breeze off the Firth of Clyde, the 28-year-old from Northern Ireland went around in 5-under-par 66 to take a three-stroke lead over Jesper Parnevik.


Clarke, a rising star who is fourth in Ryder Cup points for Europe, was 9-under-par over two days with a 133, tying the 36-hole record for British Opens played at Royal Troon. Bobby Clampett shot a 133 in 1982 when the course played to a par 72.


Royal Troon played more like a par 76 on Thursday, when the winds made the closing holes as difficult as any back nine in major championship golf.


That wasn't nearly the case Friday, and Clarke took advantage.


He birdied three of the first four holes and got to 8 under at the turn -- enough to put distance between Jim Furyk, who shared the first-round lead with Clarke at 67, and enough to drop Tiger Woods out of the picture.


Parnevik managed a 136 total to stay slightly behind Clarke.


While the holes going out played a little longer without much wind, Clarke realized he wouldn't be fighting for his life when he reached the 438-yard 10th hole, the first of several long par 4s that traditionally play into the wind.


"It was perfect,'' Clarke said. "There was barely any wind at all. There were a lot more birdie opportunities.''


Clarke made eight birdies, offset by three bogeys. After saying Thursday that he only wanted to get into contention, Clarke is starting to believe he can stay there.


"Maybe come Sunday there will be pressure, but right now I've got to go play,'' he said.


Furyk shot a 72 and was at 139, six strokes behind. Jay Haas also got to 3-under until slipping with a couple of bogeys on the back. He shot 70 for a 141.


Another stroke back were David Duval and Curtis Strange.


U.S. Open champion Ernie Els went around in 69 for a 144, tied with Phil Mickelson and Nick Faldo.


Woods' chances may have vanished in the brush behind the 10th green. He three-putted twice for bogeys and two-putted twice for birdies, but then fell apart trying to take off more than he could handle.


He wound up with a quadruple-bogey 8 on the 10th, then parred the next seven holes before closing with a birdie for a 3-over 74. That put him at 146, 13 strokes behind.


"It was a good enough lie where I could get a club on it,'' Woods said. "I just wanted to hack the shot to the front of the green. Unfortunately, it took me three shots to get to the front of the green.''


A birdie on the 18th gave him a 74 for 146, 13 strokes behind Clarke.


Defending champion Tom Lehman was with Woods in the group at 146. Lehman, who won at Loch Lomond last week, was penalized two strokes on the second hole for failing to replace his ball mark.