Masterton amateur Kerry Mountcastle has emerged as the new leader after a quiet moving day at the New Plymouth Golf Club for the Augusta Funds Management, Taranaki Open presented by Pipetech.

Mountcastle has once again shown he can fit it with the professionals as he produced a very impressive three-under 69 to pop his nose ahead of local Dominic Barson.

The 21-year-old carded five birdies with two bogeys and now has a chance to earn his maiden victory on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour.

"It cant get any more exciting than this, I just have to go and enjoy it," beamed Mountcastle.

"Im playing well enough to go out there and make birdies so I just have to stay patient and see what happens."

The clear headed kid from Masterton seems relaxed and coupled with that, he has a very simple game plan.

"Looking at the weather report for tomorrow there probably wont be so much attacking, so I guess I will just be trying to hit it straight."

Mountcastle has been given the week off work to be here and its turning out to be a great decision thus far. Training hours are very limited so to be at the top of the leaderboard shows the natural talent he possesses.

"Getting given the week off has been a very good decision and I certainly didnt want to waste the chance, so all is going to plan at this stage."

Round two leader and local pro, Barson sits just one shot behind. After shooting up the standings with a second round 64, Barson will be pegging it up in the final group tomorrow.

"I played surprisingly well today after the 64 so I was very pleased. I missed out on making those 10 footers today when you normally expect the odd one to drop," said Barson.

"Kerry has had a very good tournament so far which makes for an exciting day tomorrow."

Shaun Jones and Steven Heyes round up the top four who sit within striking distance tomorrow just two and three shots back respectively.

One thing you can almost guarantee is that there will be a first time winner hold aloft the Taranaki Open trophy tomorrow afternoon. However, it is hard for the eye not to notice Josh Geary who has just returned from the Tour and is sitting at four under par. On a windy New Plymouth day, anything can happen.

In the womens field, Brittney Dryland has taken control charging out to a four shot lead entering the final round tomorrow.

Shooting a very solid round of even par, Dryland was the only one to do so as the others faltered on a cold Saturday morning.

"Its exciting to be up the top once again on the Jennian Homes Charles Tour, I just hope I can repeat what happened at Akarana earlier in the year," said Dryland.

This would be the Aucklanders second victory on tour as she continues to be a threat at this level.

Starting the day in a tie for the lead, Tyla Kingi couldnt find her rhythm and now finds herself needing to charge home tomorrow if she has any chance of making up a six shot deficit.

Ela Grimwood is in second place and Chantelle Cassidy rounds out the top four. Both will have to turn their form around and produce 18 holes of superb Sunday golf if they are to chase down Aucklands Dryland.

Mens Scores after round 3

Saturday 1 October, 2016

New Plymouth Golf Club (Par 72)

204 Kerry Mountcastle (Masterton) 68 67 69

205 Dominic Barson (New Plymouth Inc.) 70 64 71

206 Shaun Jones (PGA New Zealand) 71 68 67

207 Steven Heyes (New Plymouth Inc.) 71 67 69

209 Chang Gi Lee (Pupuke) 69 69 71

211 Grant Moorhead (PGA New Zealand) 67 69 75

212 Victor Janin (Rotorua) 72 72 68, Sam An (Titirangi) 73 70 69, Josh Geary (PGA New Zealand) 71 72 69, Harry Bateman (Muriwai) 70 72 70, Martin Pettigrew (PGA New Zealand) 69 72 71, Nick Gillespie (Titirangi) 69 71 72

213 Mark Purser (PGA New Zealand) 72 75 66, Pieter Zwart (PGA New Zealand) 73 69 71, Mark Hutson (Muriwai) 72 68 73, Jared Pender (Te Puke) 70 70 73, Peter Lee (PGA New Zealand) 70 69 74, Fraser Wilkin (Royal Auckland) 69 69 75

214 Benjamin Campbell (PGA New Zealand) 76 68 70, Kieran Muir (Omokoroa) 74 69 71, Nicholas Davey (Mt Maunganui) 71 70 73

215 Brian Joe (Titirangi) 71 74 70, Brad Hayward (New Plymouth Inc.) 73 72 70, Douglas Holloway (PGA New Zealand) 69 75 71, Daniel Graham (PGA New Zealand) 71 70 74, Troy Ropiha (PGA New Zealand) 70 68 77

216 Cameron Jones (Muriwai) 74 73 69, Daniel Pearce (Titirangi) 70 74 72, Mark Brown (PGA New Zealand) 71 72 73, Lachie McDonald (Marton) 73 70 73, James Devlin (PGA New Zealand) 69 71 76

217 Wesley Jeon (Whitford Park) 75 72 70, Will Song (Whitford Park) 72 72 73

218 Jordan Loof (Royal Wellington) 74 74 70, Matty Tiplady (Maungakiekie) 73 69 76

219 Karl Knedler (Tauranga) 73 74 72, Hayden Beard (Mt Maunganui) 68 77 74, Fraser MacLachlan (Millbrook Resort & Country Club) 70 74 75, Harry Hillier (Te Puke) 72 72 75

220 Benjamin Joseph (Inglewood) 72 72 76

221 Travis Stewart (New Plymouth Inc.) 72 76 73, Mathew Holten (Clearwater) 77 70 74

222 Joonsang Chung (PGA New Zealand) 74 74 74, Andrew Searle (Tumahu) 75 73 74, Aarun Langton (Opunake) 76 72 74, Steven Han (PGA New Zealand) 73 74 75

223 Kyle Wong (Remuera) 70 76 77

224 Mark Kennard (New Plymouth Inc.) 76 72 76

225 Shanon Holden (Pakuranga) 77 71 77

226 Adam Hawkins (Australia) 72 76 78

Womens Scores after round 3

Saturday 1 October, 2016

New Plymouth Golf Club (Par 72)

221 Brittney Dryland (Titirangi) 73 76 72

225 Ela Grimwood (Gulf Harbour Country Club) 73 77 75

226 Chantelle Cassidy (Riverside) 76 75 75

227 Tyla Kingi (Opotiki) 75 74 78

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Golf NZ