Canadian Richard Zokol, until now known for his former habit of listening to music between shots, shot a 4-under-par 67 today to take the third-round lead by two strokes in the Anheuser-Busch Golf Classic at Kingsmill Golf Club.
Zokol, with the low round of a day on which the temperature rose to 98 degrees, moved 8 under par at 205, to 207 for Jodie Mudd and Kenny Knox and 208 for former PGA champion Hal Sutton and Gene Sauers.
Zokol gave part of the credit for his resurgence to Mac O'Grady, who he said helped him with his swing mechanics. "I played with Mac for the first two rounds last week as O'Grady won the Greater Hartford Open and he really helped me out. He gave me some good tips," said Zokol, never a winner on the pro tour.
O'Grady gave out another tip today -- a $50 bill to a volunteer he called out of the crowd at the 17th tee after his caddy for the tournament, Pat Eswax, quit.
O'Grady and Eswax reportedly had been bickering for much of the round. O'Grady pulled the flag himself on the 16th hole, but Eswax carried his bag to the 17th tee, laid it down and walked away. O'Grady then asked the gallery at the tee: "Has anybody here had any experience caddying?" No one spoke. Then Steve Strausbaugh, a junior high science teacher from Virginia Beach, said, "I'll carry your bag."
O'Grady motioned Strausbaugh onto the course, and the teacher obliged. O'Grady parred the 17th and bogeyed the 18th hole, and paid Strausbaugh $50 for his efforts, according to several members of the media who saw the transaction. Neither O'Grady or Eswax was available for comment. O'Grady begins a six-tournament suspension from the PGA Tour after this event.
Zokol, who stopped using the portable tape player after the 1983 season when "I grew as a player and could relax on my own," was one of the few players to shoot a round in the 60s today. Three days of 90-plus heat left the greens at Kingsmill Golf Club extremely fast.
Tony DeLuca, the Vienna, Va., upstart who began the day at 136, one shot out of the lead, faded with a 79. Tour veteran Mark Hayes, who had been at 136, too, fared even worse: 80. Mudd, who shared the lead each of the first two days, hung in with a 72, but 36-hole co-leader Tony Sills dropped back with a 75.
Zokol is getting married next Saturday in Vancouver and said he had not planned to play here. "Finally, though, I decided to play right up to before the marriage."