His second round 65 was enough to surge 29 places up the leaderboard, into a tie for fifth.
Most of his good work came around the turn when he pulled off a blistering stretch of birdie, birdie, eagle, birdie to trail Danny Willett of Yorkshire, the Argentine Emiliano Grillo and Spain's Rafa Cabrera-Bello and Pablo Larrazabal by two shots.
"I hit it to about a foot at the first or my 10th then holed a 20-footer at the next and rolled-in an eight footer for eagle at my 12th hole and then four feet at the next, so that was a great start to my back nine," he said.
"I was on a real roll until the stoppage, so after the delay it was good to come back out and make two solid pars. So after being three over par after three holes on Thursday and thinking about what I was going to do with myself over the weekend, so I'm now thrilled to be now just two shots from the lead and very much in contention."
Paul Lawrie missed out by a shot in bizarre incident ahead of an 87-minute late afternoon thunderstorm delay. Lawrie was standing over a birdie putt on the final green when the siren for an impending electrical storm sounded on his backswing, and after missing the putt he had to immediately mark his ball and leave the course.
While four players elected not to return and were subsequently disqualified under new Tour rules, Lawrie changed into track shoes and returned to hole a two-foot par putt in a round of 69 for a three-under-par tally but one shot shy of playing all four rounds.
"The siren sounded on the middle of my back stroke which was nice but these things happen," he said, philosophically. "But then the officials only have to look around to see if you are over a shot though it didn't matter as I missed the cut, so we're heading home."
Of the other Scots, David Drysdale shot 68 to add to his first-round 72 to make the cut with not a shot to spare, but Jack Doherty (70) had one shot too many and Marc Warren, Richie Ramsay, Chris Doak, Jamie McLeary, Scott Jamieson, Alastair Forsyth and Peter Whiteford all missed out by a distance.
It was a homecoming to forget for the new US Open champion, Martin Kaymer, who left the crowd deflated by missing the halfway cut by four strokes with scores of 71 and 73.