Rahm opens with 66 in Race to Dubai

(AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) Out of the running for the Race to Dubai title, Rory McIlroy still forced his way onto center stage at the season-ending World Tour Championship on Thursday by producing one of his greatest shots of the year.

McIlroy flushed a 3-wood from 291 yards with his second shot at the par-5 18th hole on the Earth Course, the ball settling five feet from the cup. He rolled in the eagle putt for an 8-under 64, leaving the second-ranked McIlroy a stroke off the lead held by ailing Frenchman Mike Lorenzo-Vera.

"As soon as I hit it, I knew it was perfect," the four-time major champion said, adding it was "possibly the best shot I've hit all year."

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