Luke Donald admitted he had played one of the rounds of his life after taking the clubhouse lead on the opening day of the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.
Donald made only one mistake in his seven-under par 64 on the West Course, bogeying the 12th on a day when scoring was anything but easy.
Tough winds and rain showers made life difficult and he was one of very few star players to shoot under par with Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy two of those who struggled.
Westwood fared best of that duo with a one-over 72 while McIlroy shot 76 to sit miles off Donald's hectic pace with Italian teenager Matteo Manassero and Sweden's Johan Edfors closest to him after 66s.
Just to show how demanding the conditions were, golf's four current major champions were a cumulative 20 over par. Martin Kaymer, who - like Donald - could also become number one, shot 74, Graeme McDowell 75, Louis Oosthuizen 76 and Charl Schwartzel a 79.
"That was probably one of the best rounds I've ever played," Donald said before 15 players failed to finish their rounds after an inclement day.
"To pretty much have control of the golf ball doesn't happen very often in golf, but that's how I felt today. I was just seeing the shots and I was able to hit them. It was very, very satisfactory.
"I like the fact that you have to grind. You have to give it a little bit extra. There's no quitting out there. You have to step up and play very strongly. Otherwise, it's going to be a very tough day.
"There are guys who don't like bad weather or don't have the talent to kind of compete in it - it makes the field a bit smaller in terms of people with the ability to win."
Play was held up for 36 minutes in late afternoon because of a thunderstorm, but on the resumption Swede Oscar Floren, playing in the very last group of the day, raced to four under after seven holes.
Floren remained four under with four to go when play was suspended for the day because of fading light.
The first round resumes at 7am on Friday morning.