Local caddie eager to win job on Tour

JOHN HERBERT -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 8:19 AM ET

Chad Eaton would do it even for two boxes of golf balls.

That's how excited the 25-year-old Londoner is about his opportunity to caddie this week in the Canadian Women's Open at the London and Country Club.

"I could care less what they pay me, even this week if she gave me golf balls I'd be happy," said Eaton, who would jump at the chance to be a full-time caddie on the LPGA Tour. "This is what I want to do. I love it. I'd love the travel. If she likes me and if things go well, I'm willing to take off to Portland (Ore.) for next week's tournament."

He'll be looping the Hunt course for LPGA Tour player Angie Rizzo, who is from Scottsdale, Ariz.

Eaton isn't exactly a fresh-faced rookie caddie, having worked at eight men's pro tournaments in the London area. He also seems to bring luck to the players.

He has carried four times for Chris Tidland on the PGA and Nationwide tours. Tidland won the Bayer Classic at Sarnia's Huron Oaks and lost in a playoff with Tim Clark, now a PGA Tour player, at the Canadian Professional Golfers Association Championship when it was played at Forest City National a few years ago.

He's also caddied for South African Manny Zerman and Nationwide players Ken Duke and Doug Labelle III, who recently won a Nationwide event.

"I developed a relationship with Chris," Eaton said. "I gave him yardages, he asked my opinion on clubs and I always helped him read putts. But this is a different era. I really don't know Angie so until we get on the course I won't know what she expects."

Eaton also brings a little extra to this week's tournament. He worked on the Hunt Club grounds crew for two summers and knows the course well.

Eaton is one of six who so far have landed caddie jobs from 25 who filled out pro caddie application forms. Most of the LPGA players, especially the established stars, have their own caddies who travel from event to event.

Hunt members Rick Bains and Scott Disney head up the caddie committee.

Ken Foran, Joe Fitzpatrick, Dino Sartoretto, Tim Lane and Brian Burak are among other London and area men who landed jobs.

Fitzpatrick, who worked three Nationwide Tour events played in Canada, has been assigned to Catherine Cartwright. Lane, who worked two men's pro events, drew Ashley Bickerton. Sartoretto will carry for Yi Yeon Lee. Burak has Marilyn Lavender.

Foran has been assigned Naree Song, who joined the LPGA Tour in 2005 along with her twin Aree.

Foran, 52, is very experienced having carried bags in the 1970 and 1971 Canadian men's Open and the 1993 du Maurier Classic when it was played at the Hunt. Foran said he caddied for Curtis Sifford in 1970 and the following year hitch-hiked to Montreal with three buddies to caddie again. There, he was assigned to Moe Norman, the Canadian golfing great. At the du Maurier, Foran caddied for Stephanie Croce who shot the low score in Friday's second round -- a 68 -- and made a hole-in-one on the final day at the 13th.

She paid him $400.

"I'm pumped," said Foran, adding making money has nothing to do with working this week. "I can't wait to get on the computer and check out her career. I'll feel things out the first day or two (today in the practice round and tomorrow in the pro am). If she asks advice, you give it. If she doesn't, you keep quiet.

"You have to build some trust."


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