Adam Hadwin shot an opening round 67 to leave him two strokes off the lead in the inaugural Brasil Classic on Thursday.

It was Hadwin’s best opening round in four starts this year as the Abbotsford, B.C. golfer had five birdies and a single bogey. Hadwin has struggled in the early part of the season, missing all three of his cuts while breaking par in just three of six rounds played.

Sweden’s Richard S. Johnson, New Zealand’s Danny Lee and Tom Hoge of the United States all posted 6-under 65s to share the first-round lead at the Sao Paulo Golf Club course. The three are one stroke better than five other golfers.

Johnson played in two European Tour events at the Sao Paulo Golf Club a few years back, finishing tied for 11th at the 2000 Brazil 500 Years Open and tied for second at the 2001 Sao Paulo Brazil Open.

“I checked before I came down here. I’ve been here twice but I have no memory of playing the course,” said Johnson. “I don’t know if that’s good or bad but as long as I keep shooting good scores, I don’t really care.”

Matt Hill of Sarnia, Ont., carded an opening round 3-under 68 which included an eagle on the par-5 13th hole. That leaves him tied for 24th.

Richard Scott of Kingsville, Ont., opened with an even par 71 as did Jon Mills of Belleville, Ont., who is making his first start on the Web.com Tour since September of last year. Mills missed the cut in five of seven events last year.

Kevin Foley, winner of the season-opening Panama Claro Championship and No. 4 on the money list, stumbled to a 9-over 80. Foley had two triple bogeys, a double bogey and a bogey for his highest score on Tour in 22 career starts

SOURCE: http://globeandmail.golfcanada.ca/?articleId=10791779