Belt enjoyed a steady start playing alongside South Korean Byeong Hun An and Indian Shiv Kapur, and was par for the course after three holes.
After a birdie at the par-five fourth and holding par on the fifth, Belt looked to be hitting top form, but a five-hole wobble comprising four bogeys and a double bogey halted his progress.
The former St Augustine’s School pupil found some steady form on the final eight holes to end the round on 77, five over par for the course.
Belt will be looking to improve tomorrow when he tees off with Kapur (-2) and An (-1) at 3.10pm.
Sweden’s Robert Karlsson currently leads the way after carding a five-under 67.