Jeongeun Lee birdied her final four holes at the Evian Championship to shoot a 10-under par 61 and tie the lowest round ever in major championship history.
She led after the second round with a 36-hole total of 127, good for 15-under par. That also was a record for two rounds in a men’s or women’s major championship, breaking the 128 shot by Brooks Koepka at the 2019 PGA Championship. South Korean In Gee Chun shot a 129 at the 2016 Evian Championship.
Lee, 25, tied the 61 fired by another South Korean, Hyo Joo Kim, in the 2014 Evian in Evian-Les-Bains, France.
The winner of the US Women’s Open in 2019, Lee had 10 birdies and no bogeys on Friday to hold a three-stroke lead over Thai compatriots Ariya Jutanugarn (63) and Pajaree Anannarukarn (65). Lee needed only 23 putts over 18 holes.
“I had a lot of birdie chances,” Lee said. “I could play easily. My putting was really, really good, so, yeah, that’s it.”
Jutanugarn stayed hot on the heels of Lee after collecting six birdies and an eagle to card a 63 on Friday. She eagled her closing hole for the second straight day.
“I’m pretty lucky to make eagle last hole. I feel good right now about making it,” Jutanugarn said. “I want to keep building on that. I will say mostly my commitment. I feel like I was getting better today, but I can still get better.”
Anannarukarn also recorded an eagle at No. 18 to cap her round of 65, matching her score from Thursday’s first round.
“I didn’t change any strategy out there,” Anannarukarn said. “I stick to what I play the first round and, yeah, that worked out today. It’s all good.”
Australian Lydia Ko (65), who won the 2015 Evian tournament, and 19-year-old Yealimi Noh (68) are tied for fourth place at nine-under for the tournament.
Japan’s Ayaka Furue (68) resides one stroke back.
Defending champion Jin Young Ko, who won the title in 2019, rebounded from an opening-round 72 with a 69 on Friday. She is tied for 40th place at one-under.