Host pro Curtis Strange scrambled for a par on the last hole to complete a course-record 64 and grab a share of the third-round lead in the $300,000 Anheuser-Busch Golf Classic today at the Kingsmill Golf Course.

Strange ended his seven-under-par round by making a seemingly impossible 4 on the 18th hole after he drove his tee shot onto the cart path. He recovered by lofting a difficult third-shot chip onto the top of the four-level green and concluded his day with a stunning 12-foot breaking putt.

Tied with Strange at four-under-par 209 are John Mahaffey (70 today) and Howard Twitty (71).

"i never did get nervous until the 18th," said Strange, who said he was delighted to be back in contention after barely making Friday's cut.

Strange said that he was enjoying the throngs of spectators who have been dogging him everywhere since his arrival at his home course and insisted that the pressure had not contributed to his poor first two rounds.

"When I haven't played well I just want to go hide . . . I don't want to play bad in front of people who know me," he said. "The extra pressure is the simple reason I'd like to play well."

He said his hot round "laid to rest some of the criticism of the course. You can't shoot 64 on a badly conditioned golf course."

Trailing the leaders by one stroke at 210 were George Cadle, who shot a 68, Andy North with a 67 and Mike Sullivan at 69.

Ben Crenshaw, the defending champion, went from two strokes behind the lead to four stokes back, 213, after shooting a 71.