What they said: Kevin ChappellApril 17, 2011
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: Valero Texas Open transcript archive
MARK STEVENS: All right. I'd like to welcome Kevin Chappell. Kevin, nice finish, tough ending there. If you want to kind of take us through what happened and your thoughts and then we'll take some questions.
KEVIN CHAPPELL: It was just a lot of fun out there today. Obviously making bogey on 17 probably was the least amount of fun I've had all day but, you know, if you would have told me I would shoot 2-under today with the wind blowing 20, I would have thought I would have won the golf tournament. I walked off the golf course with my head held high with a lot of positives.
MARK STEVENS: Questions.
Q. Kevin, take us through 17. What was your yardage there and how were you feeling about that shot??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I had 87 yards and figured it was playing 100. I'll be honest, I think I just feel asleep. I felt the wind was dead into me and I kind of hit -- left center of the fairway, on the tee it was straight into. I should have known it was a little left to right and I actually felt like I struck the ball the way I wanted to.
When I found the ball in flight, it was right of the hole and like whoa, what just happened? I hit a good pitch from where I was and actually feel like I hit a good putt to hit it a little hard.
I struggled with my speed all day but, you know, hit it where I was aiming, which is always what you want.
Q. You looked like you backed away from the first putt there. What happened??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I got hit in the face with a bug. Happened to me a few times today. Felt like I got my composure back and hit the putt the way I wanted to.
Q. What club did you hit from the fairway??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I hit a sand wedge.
Q. You had the final three-some there, three young guys, you know, almost like PGA TOUR's Romper Room. Was it fun when you have those kind of young guns out there??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: Yeah, it was a fun. I know Brendan and Cameron well and played a lot of golf with them throughout our careers, whether it's Junior Golf, college golf and then last year on the Nationwide Tour a little bit.
You know, it's nice to have someone in a group going through the same thing you're going through. You know, it was very a comfortable pairing for me.
Q. Brendan mentioned yesterday, he said that a lot of people don't know these names. We sure like to do something by the end of the year.
It seems like young golfers like yourself and Brendan don't seem really intimidated by the big guns out there. Why is that??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: You know, good golf travels and it doesn't matter whether you're playing the Mini Tour or Nationwide Tour or PGA TOUR. If you're playing good golf you're going to continue to play good golf.
To be honest, I don't think who's out there. It's me versus this week the Valero Texas Open golf course out here and that's -- that was my opponent this week and you know, I felt like I fared pretty well with the conditions and so for me that's my attitude and it's been working at whatever level I'm at.
Q. You guys were pretty good all day in some pretty tough conditions. When it was over, what did you have to say to each other??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: Just congratulated him. He gutted it out just like I did. You know, it was a lot of fun and I really enjoyed it as much as you can enjoy it.
Q. Since you knew those guys, was there any, you know, talk on the course or when it's that close until final group or in your own??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: Little conversation going on on the front nine and then as we eased our way into the round it got quieter and quieter. I found myself talking to a walking scorer or talking to our observers and I'm the type of guy that's pretty laid back, likes to have a conversation out there.
Q. Talking to the gallery??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: Andy Sutton.
Q. Looked like you guys were having some fun out there, too.
KEVIN CHAPPELL: It's a new relationship, third week he's worked for me and Andy came from Ben Curtis' bag. Actually came out of retirement. He retired -- he retired, he said last year at the British Open and then he wanted to come back out and my swing coach, Nick Bradley and Andy are good friends and I had -- my caddy and I just split and Andy wanted a young guy to come work for and so this is the third week he's worked.
Q. Talk about the course. Obviously it's pretty difficult. As a whole for the week what's your evaluation??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: The course is in great condition. You know, it's a fun to play. Probably a lot more fun to play when you're playing with some buddies. It's difficult.
You don't stand there on the tee and say I can just wail away at this one. I'd say square footage, the golf course probably isn't that narrow but as soon as you hit one off line you start realizing how narrow it is.
The golf course puts a premium on driving the ball in the fairway, that way you can hit it in the right quarters of the greens.
Q. Speaking of the greens, there been discussion about subtle tweaks on this course. Still relatively new on a Tour event.
In your observation looking back, do you see, are the greens penile, are they tough, tougher than some you've seen?
KEVIN CHAPPELL: They are but I think the staff and the PGA TOUR did a good job of probably slowing the greens' speeds up a little bit because it was so windy.
If they had them fast at 12s or 13s, balls would have been moving on their own and stuff. I didn't hear ever any stories like that this week. I didn't have any of that happen to me. I think they set-up the golf course well for the weather.
Q. With the wind coming out of the south I guess it was pretty stiff. How did that affect guys as opposed to a couple days ago when it was coming from the north??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I guess I would say since I've been here the south is a predominant wind. The golf course is made to play that way. As you could tell, there were some good scores shot today probably because of that and, you know, the north wind makes all the easy holes play easier and all the hard holes play harder. All the driveables are still driveable with a north wind and then with the south wind, they're not driveable.
So, I think Greg Norman and Sergio built the golf course according to the wind we played today. I think that's why you saw some lower scores.
Q. Kevin one more quick one. Take us through 18 a little bit. You went to 18 after making the mistake on 17 and what was your thought process on the tee??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I mean trying to make birdie and it's not the easiest fairway to hit. To be honest with you, I thought Brendan's ball was miles right. I don't know what kind of bounce it got or where it landed but his ball is in the middle of the fairway and to hit that fairway you have to hit over the tree.
I got up there and had a good line. I pulled it five, six yards and bounces left and it's in the left rough. I felt like I hit a good layup and went a little bit too far, probably amped up.
Third shot probably the worse shot I hit all today. Unsolid, not very good feedback. Then the pitch, trying to make it and then, you know, you don't want to leave yourself six feet coming back up the hill and you know, I knew where Brendan was at.
Probably just a lot going on. I could have taken a little bit more time. I hit the shot when I was ready and grasped, just grabbed the club and the ball came out a little softer than I expected.
Q. You finished 2nd. Is there anything like tangible you can take away from this tournament mindset-wise for the next time you're in the situation??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: I was surprised by how comfortable I was out there. I felt like I kept my rhythm really well and controlled my nerves fairly well throughout the day and, you know, I guess that's what I'll take from it, if I can keep in constant rhythm throughout the day I'll get the results I want.
Q. I know it stings a little bit maybe right now but there's going to be maybe in a day or so from where you come from, finishing second here not bad, right??
KEVIN CHAPPELL: It hasn't been a good year. Your observation is correct. It is nice to play a good golf tournament and get one under your belt. Obviously finishing 2nd, it stings but I gave myself a chance to win and that's all you can ask for.
Now, who knows when I'll get my win but it will come.
MARK STEVENS: All right. Thanks a lot Kevin. Good luck down the road.