BALLYMENA, Northern Ireland — Scotland’s Ewen Ferguson set the course record at Galgorm Castle Golf Club with a 9-under 61 to open a four-stroke lead after the first round of the ISPS Handa World Invitational on Thursday.

Ferguson took part in the eagle on the 10th and 18th and added five birdies on his flawless opening day at Galgorm Castle, one of two courses used for the event which features men’s and women’s tournaments taking place simultaneously.

England’s Richard Bland, Sweden’s Felix Palson and Spain’s Borja Virto were all five under par.

Bland at No. 77 is the only top 100 player in the world rankings in the field. He has been participating in LIV Golf events since the start in June.

Ferguson broke the previous course record by one stroke, describing it as a “pretty nice” feat.

The tournament is tri-sanctioned with the Ladies European Tour and the LPGA Tour. The men and women play from different tees and compete separately, with two equal prizes of $1.5 million each.

Players will complete 18 holes at Galgorm Castle and 18 at Massereene Golf Club before a mid-point cut – to top 60 and ties – is made in each tournament, with a further cut after 54 holes for top 35 players and ties.

Amanda Doherty of the United States led the women’s tournament after a 6-under 67 that included seven birdies and just one bogey at Galgorm Castle.

Doherty, 24, was ahead of a four-man field that included Ireland’s Leona Maguire and England’s Georgia Hall. American Lauren Coughlin and Denmark’s Emily Kristine Pedersen also fought back after their rounds in Massereene.

“I was really trying to stay in the moment today,” Doherty said. “I feel like I was in a bit of that mindset at the start of the day. I just stayed there and waited. I know it’s a bit cliche, but it works. I was hitting the ball well. I made some good putts and there were accessible par-5s, so it kind of came together.”

Maguire is the highest-ranked player in the field at No. 17 in the women’s world rankings.