Toshiba Classic interview: David Frost
February 16, 2014
- David Frost won the Toshiba Classic for his fourth career victory on the Champions Tour. (Getty Images)
MORE INTERVIEWS: Toshiba Classic transcript archive
PHIL STAMBAUGH: We welcome David Frost to the interview room here Sunday afternoon. David, congratulations on your fourth career victory on the Champions Tour, second in your last six starts. You did a couple things, 19-under par, tied the tournament record set by Jay Haas in '07, and you won by five shots as it turned out, which matched Hale Irwin's winning margin in 2002. Congratulations. You get 263 Charles Schwab Cup points, which moves you into the lead in the season-long race.
Overall comments about the day and then we'll go through the round.
DAVID FROST: The day started off, I felt as good as I did the first two days. Obviously you never know what's going to happen, Freddy being a crowd favorite and loving the place and loving playing golf in LA, you never know if he's going to come out and throw a 4-under par on the front nine and all of a sudden you've got a little uphill battle. But fortunately for me he didn't make any birdies on the first four, five holes and I did make a couple, so that gave me a little bit of a cushion. Unfortunately I 3-putted 7 and he made a birdie, which there was a bit of a swing there. And 10 he
got within one shot and I think it was just a bit too much work for him, I wasn't hitting any bad shots out there. It would have to be me hitting some bad shots and him hitting some real good ones, and I don't really think he was hitting his irons that well for the game to swing away from me and towards him, so I felt confident about my game out there.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Can you talk about winning now twice in your last six starts and you picked up an additional win there at Mauritius at the European Senior Tour.
DAVID FROST: So does that mean it's three out of seven?
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Three out of seven.
DAVID FROST: Yes, obviously it's something I've worked very hard towards. I've worked very hard on my game the last four, five years, didn't think it would come that easy, just try and play boring golf, hit it in the middle of the greens, especially out here. The greens are very small so playing to the middle of the green you're going to have a 15-foot putt every time. The first day I got lucky and hit some really close. Today again played for the middle of the greens most of the time and didn't miss any makeable putts, so that put me in a good position to stay out front all the time.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Before we go to questions, just take us through the round if you could starting at 1, you mentioned the three-putt at 7.
DAVID FROST: 1, I hit a good drive and I had a tricky approach in there. Yesterday the green was very hard and I tried to pump it in and just completely hit a bad shot. It's easy playing in Scotland where you hit these bump-and-run shots and then just once or twice a year we've got to hit those kind of shots here on this golf course the first hole, the pin is on the back of the green, so I tried to bump it in and I just misjudged it completely and made a bogey there. Second hole I hit it three feet for birdie. Next hole I chipped it up about eight feet and made that for birdie again. I made two nice birdies on 5 and 6, I hit an 8-iron on 5 about 15 feet and then I hit a 9-iron about two feet on No. 6. 7, hit a good shot in, unfortunately ran my putt too far by, made a three-putt there. 10, I had a good approach, missed from about 10 feet after Freddy made birdie there. 11, hit a good approach again. 12, good approach. 13, I hit a 6 iron about eight feet, missed that. 14, I had a lucky bounce off the bunker on the left side and ended up eight feet from the hole, rolled that in. And then I had Phil Blackmar came and talked to me on 14 walking down the fairway and he just asked me how I felt and I thought I was in a good position there and with two par 5s coming, I felt confident I would birdie the two par 5s, that meant that Freddy would have to do a lot to really catch me if I made those two birdies, which would have put me at 17-, 18-under. That was a tall order. So I felt very comfortable, I felt good with my swing, I felt confident, I was hitting all the fairways. So I really felt good, especially on the back nine where back nine golf is always hard to play when you're struggling a little bit, but today I felt very comfortable out there.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Details on 15, 17, 18.
DAVID FROST: 15, I hit a drive about -- I was 200 yards from the front of the green and ran a 3-iron up just to the right edge, chipped it up to four feet, made that. 17, the position I was in on 17, I didn't have to go at the pin, I didn't want to get the ball back there, I wanted to play for the front of the green and if it got to the top, that was a bonus. I hit a good shot, it got to the top and it rolled all the way back down. I must have had a 45-foot putt and just chose my spot on the left side. I was just trying to get it close and it found the middle of the hole. Really big bonus there, but I think those things happen when you keep knocking on the door, you keep hitting good shots, you keep putting yourself in position to get birdie putts and that's going to happen. And then 18, hit a good drive up there and I had 220 yards to the hole, and by then I didn't think anything else could happen but win, so I was a lot more relaxed playing 18 than I would have been if I had a one-shot lead.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: You just two-putted --
DAVID FROST: I got up-and-down out of the bunker, about four feet. I think that was the only bunker I was in all week.
Q. What is it like playing against the crowd favorite? Does it make you bear down? Does it make you concentrate more? Do you ignore it or does it irritate you?
DAVID FROST: I think there's more pressure on him than on me. Obviously me being in the lead, there's a bit of pressure. Him chasing, you know, he's got to make the putt he gets over all the time, whereas me, you know, it would be nice if I make it, I could stretch my lead, but again I think the pressure was more on him. And, you know, it's great to be able to be in that position where you're in a guy's hometown and you're able to beat him. I played good golf and he played good golf as well. I think he would have liked to have played a bit better, especially his approaches into some of the greens. As time goes by, I feel that -- I would obviously feel that I was fortunate to be able to play golf in an era with a guy like Fred Couples, who's obviously one of the all-time greats that have ever played the game. He's a phenomenal ball striker, he can hit the ball a long way, he can putt. Man, he can putt. Okay, I made some putts, too, but every putt of his really circles the hole. Again, as I say, I feel fortunate to be in the same class as him.
Q. On 3, did you lose a shoe or sock or something?
DAVID FROST: No. Yesterday I had a bad sock that lost its elasticity and I thought I had the same one on today but I brought a spare pair of socks with me. It's a bit irritating.
Q. Did Freddy tell you anything during the round? Do you guys talk about anything in particular?
DAVID FROST: No. I think -- you know, you chit chat here and there. We don't tend to get into big conversations because you don't want to have your focus go one way and all of a sudden you go to hit the shot, so the guys like to just chit chat with their caddies. A couple lighthearted conversations we had, I just -- I spoke about some Rhodesian currency that I saw, one trillion dollar currency in Zimbabwe money, so something lighthearted like that.
Q. Do you remember how many times in your career you might have had a 19-under stretch over three rounds? That's pretty good golf.
DAVID FROST: No, not three. My record at the 3M was a 24-under I've had two 59 over four rounds in South Africa. I remember beating Nick Price and Ernie Els in the South African PGA so there was -- it was a par 71. So no, I don't remember. It's quite a good run.
Q. Can you talk a little bit more on 17 how it felt to just watch that ball go? Seems like basketball players get in a zone. Did you feel like that, too?
DAVID FROST: You know, I was putting, I was practicing all week especially on breaking putts to really -- these greens are actually easy to focus on breaking putts because the poa annua leaves kind of light brown and dark brown marks, and light brown and dark green marks as well. So the ground -- the grass really changes color, that's just the nature of the poa annua. So it's easy picking a spot to run the ball on, especially the breaking putts. You don't want to see the hole when you go to hit a breaking putt, you focus on your mark. I found a good mark, what I thought was a good mark on 17 and it turned out it was a good mark, but it just takes your focus away from the hole and puts your focus on something not the hole. It's funny how your body and your mind reacts when there's no hole. If you go to the putting green and just putted like there was no hole, or on the carpet, your stroke would be totally different than putting to a hole where you feel you've got to make it. I did a good job on the putting green this week by focusing on things like that, and then the hole got in
the way on 17, so that's what happened.
PHIL STAMBAUGH: Anything else for David? Congratulations again.
DAVID FROST: Thank you very much, thanks for all your support, thanks for your time. I'll see you back next year. Thank you.
Toshiba Classic interview: David Frost