Farmers Insurance Open interview: Tiger Woods

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January 27, 2013

MORE INTERVIEWS: Farmers Insurance Open transcripts archive

DOUG MILNE:  Tiger, thanks for joining us for a few minutes after a long day.  But it's certainly going the way you'd like here at the Farmers Insurance Open.  Just a couple comments on the day, and take a few questions and let you get about your business.

TIGER WOODS:  Yeah, it was a long day.  I mean, we played most of the day, and I played well today.  Overall, I'm very pleased that I was able to build on my lead.  As of right now, I think I've got a six‑shot lead, so that's a positive.

Q.  What did you hit on 6?
TIGER WOODS:  I hit 5‑wood, and had 214 front.

Q.  (Indiscernible)?
TIGER WOODS:  It wasn't very good, that's why I hit 5‑wood.

Q.  You drove the ball really, really nicely in the third round.  I wonder if you could talk about that in terms of the way you're playing, and it seemed that you weren't driving quite where you were aiming starting out the fourth round?
TIGER WOODS:  Yeah, I drove it great in the morning.  Just drove it on a string all day‑‑ at least all morning.  Then we had a little bit of a wait before we teed off again, and I hit a couple left on 1 and 2, and hit the one right at 4.  But that wasn't left of the cliff.  You can hit 400 yards to the right and still have a shot, so I was fine.
I was able to play those holes at 2‑under par, and from then, I hit three great drives right in a row.

Q.  If I would have told you 15 years ago you'd be going for your 75th win tomorrow and your 7th win on this course, or I should say 8th overall, what would you have said?
TIGER WOODS:  I would take that (smiling).  I would take that, for sure, yes.

Q.  How do you read it though from this point going for 75?
TIGER WOODS:  I think I've had a very successful career.  I've been out here, I think, this is my 18th season.  So I think I've had some really good years in there, and I'm very proud of what I've done.

Q.  How do you keep from being lackadaisical tomorrow when you have a six‑shot lead?
TIGER WOODS:  I've got to continue with executing my game plan.  That's the idea.  I've got 11 holes to play, and I've got to go out there and play them well.

Q.  Do you feel like this golf course gives a pretty big advantage left‑to‑right off the tee?
TIGER WOODS:  Not necessarily.  I think it just depends on the wind, what wind you have.  When we played the first day, I was drawing the ball most of the day just because the wind was an easterly wind, so I had to bank it up against that wind.  But today it was off the coast, and I was able to cut most of the tee shots.  So it depends on where the wind is coming from.

Q.  We have a late restart time tomorrow.  Does that change your approach in anyway?
TIGER WOODS:  Nope, no, not at all.

Q.  Your distance control with your short iron has been very precise.  Going back to the off‑season, are you doing anything technically different to dial in yardages?
TIGER WOODS:  No.  It's the same thing.  We're working on the same things.  It's just that I've gotten better at it.  That's one of the nice things that Sean and I have been working on that it's gotten more refined.  I just need time, and more reps and everything's starting to come together.

Q.  Obviously, you won three times last year, but all of them at one point were close.  This obviously, hasn't been that close.  Is it a different approach you take or you just remember what it used to be like when you have this kind of a lead?
TIGER WOODS:  No, I just go out there and play.  I had the lead, and the whole idea was to build on my lead, and I've done that so far.  I've got to do it again tomorrow.

Q.  Can you take us through the escape shot from around the tree and just how big it was to make a birdie from there at the 4th?
TIGER WOODS:  Yeah, I didn't have a very good lie.  I was into the grain.  I was thinking if it cut, great, then I'm short of the green.  If it didn't, I'd be in the bunker with the easy shot up the green, and it came out cutting.
I was surprised I was able to get that much club on the golf ball with that much grain coming into me, And ended up in a spot where I had a pretty makeable chip, and it was just straight up the gut.  Maybe just a fraction to the left.

Q.  I know it sounds silly, but why no red today?
TIGER WOODS:  It wasn't the final day, so I'll wear it tomorrow.

Q.  I'm curious if you take care of business tomorrow and Rory is taking some time off, would there be a chance that you'd play Rivera to become No. 1 if the addition works throughout and subtraction?
TIGER WOODS:  Let's just focus on tomorrow first (laughing).

Q.  What would you attribute being 17‑under to most?  What part of your game?
TIGER WOODS:  I think it's probably the whole package.  I've driven the ball well, I've hit my irons well, and I've chipped and putted well.  Well, I've hit good putts.  They all haven't gone in.
Today was certainly you're just trying to get your speed right, because it was wobbling all over the place.

Q.  Last week was kind of weird in many respects.  You've said earlier that you felt like you were pretty much playing the same way.  But is it still just as important for your own psyche.  Last week you said was a distant memory?
TIGER WOODS:  Well, yeah, as I said, I didn't play poorly.  I was really close.  It's a very tight golf course with a lot of crosswinds.  I felt like I didn't really hit it that poorly.  I had an unfortunate ruling there.  I broke a rule and missed the cut.
I played well enough to be there on the weekend, and could have gotten two more rounds in competitively, but I didn't really play poorly.  I thought I did a lot of good things.  Just want to continue that this week, and I have.

Q.  You've had Joey for a little while now.  How much is he contributing and how comfortable are you guys you look pretty comfortable?
TIGER WOODS:  Yeah, we are.  We're definitely gelled.  We go out there and have a good time.  He knows how far I'm hitting it, what shapes I like to hit under certain circumstances, and he'll kind of sway me into certain shots here and there.  But it's nice to get his opinion at times when I'm stuck in between clubs or stuck in between reads on the green.

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