Westwood's best US Open display is joint fifth in 2000
England's Lee Westwood hailed the Torrey Pines course after an opening-round 70 put him within two shots of the US Open lead.
"I think this is one of the best US Open courses we've ever played, it is certainly set up the best," he said.
"Even if you just miss the fairways, it gives you a chance to score and when I did miss them today, it was only just.
"All in all I was very pleased with today's work. I kept the ball more or less where I wanted to."
The 35-year-old made a fine start to his campaign despite Torrey Pines being the longest US Open course at 7,643 yards.
Westwood carded two birdies and one bogey and hit nine out of 14 fairways to end the day as top Briton, two strokes behind leaders Kevin Streelman and Justin Hicks.
"I always feel like I should have a chance at the US Open because I drive the ball well generally," he added.
"This course in particular has grown on me since the week has gone on. It is a good shaper's course where you have to draw and fade the ball in equal measure.
"It is not in such a shape that you feel like there is a disaster waiting around the corner.
"There is definitely a way to play here and hopefully I might just have found that way. Hopefully I can keep that going for the next three days and have a chance on Sunday afternoon."
Westwood has posted two top-10 finishes in his previous eight US Open appearances with his best performance coming in 2000 when he finished joint fifth.
The former European number one has yet to win a major title.