HILVERSUM, Netherlands -- Graeme Storm of England lived up to his surname in shooting a course-record 7-under 63 to lead the centenary KLM Open at Hilversum by two shots in the opening round on Thursday.
Storm birdied three of his closing four holes on the Hilversumsche course.
His effort was three shots lower than his previous best score in the premier Dutch event.
"I made the birdies when I gave myself the chances and I managed to get up and down when I missed the greens," he said.
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"I was in contention for three-and-a-half rounds in Switzerland last week after struggling in recent months. So I am just happy to get a round like that under my belt.
"I've also got the caddie David Lynn had when he won this event in 2004 so he has plenty of experience, and hopefully I can continue playing well this week and he will be there for me."
Storm teed up in the Netherlands ranked 353rd in the world and, more importantly, 114th in the Race to Dubai. He's desperate to end the season inside the top 115 to retain full European Tour membership for next season.
"Keeping my card for 2013 is the goal now," he said.
"At the start of the year it was finishing top 60 on the Race to Dubai but I'm a long way from that goal now so the big incentive in the golf I have left this year is to be here again next year."
Three players, Martin Kaymer, Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin and Paraguay's Fabrizio Zanotti, also surpassed the previous course record with their 5-under 65s to tie for second place.
Kaymer handed playing partner and Europe Ryder Cup captain Jose Maria Olazabal a reminder of his capabilities in his penultimate event before heading to the cup at Medinah outside of Chicago.
Kaymer, who won the KLM Open two years ago, capped his round with an eagle at the 12th hole where he holed a 20-foot putt.
"Jose Maria spoke to me after the round and said I did well today and also to 'just keep doing what you are doing, I trust you,'" said Kaymer.
Kaymer was seeking a first win in 10 months.
Europe teammate Peter Hanson of Sweden also produced a confidence-lifting 68 in his last event before the Ryder Cup.