Tiger’s Farmers Insurance Open press conference: Wednesday
Q. What was your reaction and reflection after hearing the news that Charlie Sifford died?
TIGER WOODS: It’s been tough. Very tough. As I’ve alluded to in the past, he’s like my grandpa that I never had. And it’s been a long night and it’s going to be a long few days. But he fought, and what he did, the courage it took for him to stick with it and be out here and play, I probably wouldn’t be here, my dad would never have picked up the game, who knows if the clause would still exist or not. But he broke it down.
Q. Did anybody give you any unsolicited advice to help you out in the last few days?
TIGER WOODS: My phone’s been off the last couple days. I’ve just been working on my game. Just Chris and I.
Q. How do you balance the patience needed to get going with this process with the urgency?
TIGER WOODS: The whole idea is to make sure that I’m ready for Augusta, so I got a lot of rounds to play between now and then. That’s what we’re building for and if I happen to play well enough to get into Doral, then great, I got four more rounds there. If I don’t, then still trying to peak for Augusta.
Q. Because that is four rounds there, does that add a little significance to it to try to get out there?
TIGER WOODS: It would be nice. It would be nice. But I have to go out and earn my way there. I’m just going to have to play better than obviously I did last week.
Q. When you look at last week, after two or three days away, what do you take away from it? Was it, it obviously must have been worse than you thought it could have been?
TIGER WOODS: I’m caught right in between patterns and when I have to hit shots, I got to shape shots, I’m caught right dead in between. So, they are so polar opposites, the movement patterns, that when I do half of one or half of the other, it’s pretty bad.
Q. Compared to maybe 10 years ago, do you feel like you work harder on your game now? Are you grinding as much as you are in the off time?
TIGER WOODS: I would say I practice much less now. One, I’ve been hurt, and two, I want to spend as much time as I can with my kids. I have split custody, so when I’m at home, I want to be home with them, take them to a soccer game or to school or to activities, whatever it is. I’m their dad.
Q. Certainly not that that shouldn’t be a priority, but when you analyze things, do you think that at all is a factor?
TIGER WOODS: No, I just have to manage my time practices differently. Over the years, especially now that they’re getting a little older where they’re getting more activities after school, that plays a role in my practice time and it’s just so, it’s just life. It’s just the way it is. I would much rather have it that way than not be able to see my kids.
Q. How do you work on it over the weekend, what did you do?
TIGER WOODS: I was in the backyard chipping and I certainly was in my hitting bay, hitting golf balls and analyzing it and just trying to commit to the pattern. That said, when I get out here and I have to hit a shot, I’m caught right in between. I’m battling through that, battling through those times and trying to come with feel, even if I do happen to make a bad swing, I know what the fix is, but could I save it during the swing itself. My good is really good. Unfortunately, my bad is really bad.
Q. Is that awkward to you right now or uncomfortable or how do you describe what you’re going through?
TIGER WOODS: The patterns are polar opposites. So that’s just like it was when I first started working with Sean versus Hank. They’re completely different release patterns. And I went through the same exact phase that I’m going through right now. It’s just battling, trying to find it, at the same time trying to get feel and develop new patterns. When you’re under the gun, you got to hit a shot, you just get so target oriented that sometimes old patterns come out and then you have a new one that’s still trying to come out as well and you get caught.
Q. Do you feel like there’s been progress with the work you did over the weekend since Phoenix?
TIGER WOODS: I’m always making progress, it’s just that I just still need to stick with it and keep doing it. This is going to be a tough week, the rough’s up this week, I was shocked at how fast the greens are on the North Course, they’re normally not that fast. We’ll see.
Q. Your feel around the greens was like one of the things that set you apart when you were the best. So how do you balance just the feel versus all these swing thoughts and swing changes?
TIGER WOODS: The thing is that the pattern that I was with Sean is totally different release pattern than I’m doing now. Then that affects the short game. So, my bottom point’s different. My impact points are different now. So I got to find a consistent bottom, but the bottoms are different now. So, that’s part of it. I just need reps, I just need to keep doing it and doing it and doing it and eventually it will start becoming more natural. As of right now, it’s not, but when I do it, when I do, do it and I look on video, it’s incredible how good it is. But when I do it wrong, you see I’m caught right dead in between.
Q. How hard is it to be patient through all this. You want to have success immediately, you know about the long-term goals.
TIGER WOODS: It’s certainly it’s a process, I’m going through it right now, and Chris and I are working our tails off to try to get this. I want to get this. I want to be ready come Augusta and the rest of the Majors, but we still got some work to do.