Choi leads Tampa Bay Classic

PALM HARBOR, Fla., Sept. 19 (UPI) -- K.J. Choi set a course record with an 8-under-par 63 and had a two-shot lead Thursday when first-round play was suspended at the Tampa Bay Classic.

Just over four months after becoming the first Korean to win a PGA Tour title, Choi birdied five of his first seven holes, including four straight, at The West Innisbrook Resort.


"I just came back from Korea and wasn't expecting to play very well with the jet lag," Choi said. "This course has very tight and narrow fairways, but I was driving very well and iron shots were very good. Putting was the only thing I had a doubt with, but I was making everything today."

Australia's Rod Pampling shot a 6-under 65 for sole possession of second place and was one shot better than Billy Andrade and Bart Bryant, who was one of 17 golfers on the Copperhead Course when play was halted.

The round was suspended due to the threat of lightning and will resume Friday at 8:15 a.m.

With temperatures topping 100 degrees, six caddies received intravenous treatment for dehydration. Paramedics will remain on-site through the weekend.


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