Tiger’s Quicken Loans National press conference: Sunday
TIGER WOODS: Today hit the ball really well. I hit the flag at 1 and kind of almost came off the green but I didn’t really miss a shot on the front-9. It was a very solid round today. I missed that little short one on 11. Hit a bad drive on 12. Hit a hell of a shot out of there to give myself a chance at a putt for par. Spun the ball back in the water at 14. It was kind of a mixed bag as far as results but the fact I had total control of the golf ball was nice.
Q: You had good feelings from St. Andrews. Do you have good feelings off of this?
TIGER WOODS: Totally. Totally. This is much better, much, much, much better to have a round like today and basically yesterday. Even though I struggled as bad as I did, you know, one thing has been missing, I’ve been trying to explain to everyone, trying to make an up and down here and there, scramble and turn a round to be awful into a scoring round. The first 7 holes yesterday I was sucking all over the place and struggling for par. I had that shot at 8 to turn my whole round around and get it in the right direction. I didn’t do it. But today I did, which was nice. Today I started off well and really hit the ball well and I looked at the whole week in general. Felt like I made some big strides.
Q: What did you fix from yesterday, anything that is easy to think of now that —
TIGER WOODS: Basically just set-up and organized back to basics. Get it organized at address and from there go ahead and go.
Q: Tiger, when you made these swing changes you had mentioned where it’s all collecting, kind of moved on and won. Have you had that moment yet, do you think?
TIGER WOODS: I think I have. I’m getting some speed back, which is nice. I’m starting to pump the ball out there again and I know my loft of my irons are very weak compared to today’s standards. I’m hitting the ball up there with some of the bigger guys again. I got my speed nice on top of that and the fact I was able to make some putts and the short game becoming good again like it used to be.
TIGER WOODS: It was because I was 5-under through 10 and really had it going. I mean I took my eye off of it. In fact, I thought I made it. Kind of almost take a step and the next thing I know it’s coming right back to my feet again. Yeah, that definitely didn’t feel very good. Then the tee shot on 12 was a tough one. Tried to hit a little low cut out there and started too far right. But that’s the way it goes.
Q: You referenced yesterday and again today, some of the recovery shots, tough places you put yourself, the one on 12 today and the one yesterday. Obviously you don’t want to be there but that’s what helps keep it going. How important is that going forward?
TIGER WOODS: Yeah. It’s all part of the pattern, though. I changed my patterns to all those shots are coming from a different spot and now I got to get a feel for it. My short game starting to come back to where it used to be. Everything kind of trending in the correct direction now.
Q: Whistling Straits, you were sort of in transition at the time. Do you like the golf course? Do you think it’s good for you if your game is in —
TIGER WOODS: It’s a great golf course. Pete Dye intimidates you with the visuals out there but he gives you a lot more room than you think. He likes to hide half the fairway or quarter of the fairway, things of that nature. Lot more room on the golf course than what you perceive it to be. And when you’re playing Pete’s golf courses, when you’re really long and the courses seem so easy because a lot of balls funnel into the areas where the flag is. Obviously Sawgrass is one of those courses, Crooked Stick is another one where it seems if you hit the ball well you’re going to have 15 footers or less all day long and you’re going to make some of those.
Q: Do you plan on playing any extra practice rounds up there?
TIGER WOODS: I’ll go up there early and take a look at it and play it.
Q: Tiger, just a comment about being here this week and the crowds. You talked about it yesterday.
TIGER WOODS: Everyone come out here and supporting this event is huge for us. Obviously it’s our platform to tell the world what we’re trying to do for kids, how we’re trying to help them, and everyone who has come out here and supported us allows us to do that. Also, thanking the military. I’ve also alluded to this. I was raised in the military. My dad was in the Army for 20 years. And so what the men and women do for us domestic and abroad they should be thanked and it’s one of those — people have forgotten we’re at war over there and I think that a lot of the people who come back here and all the men and women who are at Walter Reed and what they go through, we need to thank our servicemen and women a little bit more than we have.
Q: You also deal with this in every tournament, you got people out here who walked 18 with you in the heat.
TIGER WOODS: Not only 18, don’t forget 9 is the furthest thing from the clubhouse. It’s not like you can walk 9 and come back in. They were out there supporting us and, you know, luckily I actually — I played well, which was nice. Yesterday I think I hit a few of them but today was good (laughter).
Q: You’re getting it going now and running out of tournaments.
TIGER WOODS: I’ve got years ahead of me, that’s how I look at it, not just this season. I’ve got years and if you would have asked me that back when I had my back surgery I would have probably — I didn’t really know. That was a rough period in my career and my life. But now I’m on the good side of it.
Q: Tiger, lot of players are at tough spots in their career trying to build themselves back up like you’re doing right now. Obviously do it publicly just about every shot, is it — have you felt at all uncomfortable with all that attention as you go through this process?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I’ve had to answer questions every round where most players don’t. I was talking to Andy North, did his surgeries he’s had over the years. He would say he played the West Coast and would just miss cuts and that’s just the way it was. He was just getting ready for the Florida swing, getting ready for the Masters. No one had a clue that he had surgery in the off-season. This is a different time, different era now. Obviously with instant news, things are different now in this world. Top players are analyzed a little bit more than they used to be. It’s a different generation and it’s the way it is