(CNN) -- Sweden's Johan Edfors powered to a European Tour equal best round of the year 61 to take the lead at the Vivendi Cup in France on Thursday.
Edfor's opening 11-under-par round included 10 birdies, an eagle and a single bogey as he leads England's David Dixon by two shots.
France's Jean-Francois Remesy and John Parry of England are in a tie for third place on 64.
Three-time major winner Padraig Harrington is seven shots off the pace as he attempts to tune up his game ahead of the Ryder Cup which starts on October 1 at Celtic Manor in Wales.
Harrington, who needed a captain's pick from Colin Montgomerie, carded a four-under-par 68.
But the field was left trailing by an inspired Edfors, who has two previous wins on the European Tour.
He even thought a 59 was within his reach as he played the back nine.
"I was ten under with five to go and I had 80 meters left on 14 in the middle of the fairway and I bogeyed that one and then I birdied 17 and 18 coming in," he told the official European Tour website.
"So I felt a little bit better but had a really good chance for a 59 there, I was playing really nice.
"I really felt that I had a good chance there. I was stroking the putter really good, but unfortunately three-putted 14."
Dixon played superbly as he bids to keep his European Tour card while fellow Englishman Parry was also ripping into the course, reaching eight under through 12 until his momentum was halted by indifferent putting.