Q&A: Cory Renfrew talks Waste Management Phoenix Open
Victoria native chats about his second PGA TOUR event, playing with Mike Weir and more from Phoenix
January 26, 2015
By Brian Decker, PGATOUR.COM
- Cory Renfrew will make his second career PGA TOUR start at TPC Scottsdale (Angela Burger/PGA TOUR)
Victoria, British Columbia's Cory Renfrew will tee it up at the Waste Management Phoenix Open this week after earning a spot in the field through Monday Qualifying. The 28-year old fired a 6-under 66 at McCormick Ranch Golf Club to share medalist honours, and will play alongside Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson this week in his second career PGA TOUR event.
Renfrew chatted about playing on TOUR, his experience in Scottsdale and playing a practice round Mike Weir on Tuesday.
Well it's official, I Monday Q'd today with a 66 to get into the @WMPhoenixOpen. Thanks for all the support and messages everyone— Cory Renfrew (@C_Renfrew) January 27, 2015
Q: You play and practice here in Scottsdale during the winters. Does this feel like a bit of a home game for you, and does that make it even sweeter to be playing this week?
A: I've only played out here [at the Stadium Course] twice and I've only practiced out here five or six times, but it was nice being at McCormick Ranch because I've been out there the last few years. Throughout the round, I was thinking 'a few more birdies and I could be where I want to be.' It didn't make anything tougher. I think it was kind of inspiring to play well out there for sure.
Q: When you got to 6-under par for your round, did you think you had a chance to get in?
A: I got out of the gate quick and cruised on the front nine [Note: Renfrew teed off on the back nine]. With 5 and 6, pars were good there. I just wanted to play smart. I knew 6 [under] kind of had a chance, so I wanted birdie chances, but I didn't want to have to bust driver up there to have wedges in.
Q: You were finished your round pretty early and had a lot of time to wait before finding out if you got in. What did you do to pass the time?
A: I only live five minutes away and went home, and tried to relax as best I could. Once it was official later at night, my phone was going pretty hard.
In Tuesday's practice round, Renfrew was serenaded with a chorus of boos after missing the green at the infamous par-3 16th.
Q: What was the experience like on 16? Did you expect to be booed your Tuesday practice round? That seemed pretty harsh.
A: I heard a few cheers and boos coming up 15, but there was obviously a lot of people, and I guess it starts today booing if you miss the green. I was just smiling the whole time. I was nervous, but I just hit the shot and it was funny. That's all you can do.
Q: How do you temper your expecations for this week?
A: My golf game's good enough to make it here and compete, so I'm just trying to take as much pressure off myself as I can. Everyone else, they're rooting for me, but I don't look at it as pressure. I'm leaning more towards preparing and getting settled, and then just trying to enjoy it once Thursday rolls around.
Q: Your first PGA TOUR event was at the RBC Canadian Open in 2012. How much of that experience do you take with you for this week?
A: It was similar. I was younger then, and the stage at Canadian Opens is pretty big, but this is kind of a step up here. I'm older and I've been around a few more times. I remember being nervous that time and after a couple of holes just settling in. I have a good group of guys with Justin Thomas and Tony Finau - me and Tony are good friends - so it will be fun just to play with them.
Q: What was your practice round with Mike Weir like? Did you learn anything from playing with him?
A: I did pick up a lot. It was almost like he treated his shots like he was playing the event today. He never rushed a shot, never rushed a putt. That's something I need to do better instead of just thinking 'you can always hit two balls.' Just focus on that one and hit one -that's something I'll definitely do.