Pernilla Lindberg fired a seven-under 65 to grab a one-shot lead at the ANA Inspiration on Thursday.
The 31-year-old Swede, who has just one top-10 finish – at the 2015 U.S. Women's Open – in her major career, produced a bogey-free first round at Mission Hills Country Club.
Lindberg sits at seven under, a shot ahead of Ayako Uehara and Beatriz Recari, who carded 66s.
"I just tend to play well here," Lindberg told LPGA.com.
"I love the condition of the course, the weather is always great so for some reason it just seems to suit me well."
Swiss amateur Albane Valenzuela, 20, made a decent start with a five-under 67. She is joined in a tie for fourth by Jessica Korda and Jang Ha-na.
World number one Feng Shanshan carded a one-under 71 in the first round.
Defending champion Ryu So-yeon struggled with a 75, while Lydia Ko – the 2016 champion – opened with a two-under 70.