Encompass Insurance interview: David Frost

June 20, 2013

DAVE SENKO:  David, thanks for joining us, coming in off a big win in Birmingham a couple weeks ago and currently lead the Charles Schwab Cup race.  Maybe just talk about that win and how your game is coming in here.

DAVID FROST: Obviously it was very exciting, too exciting for me the last few holes at Shoal Creek, especially with three holes to go and then having a delay and sitting on it and then hitting more balls and having a chance to hit more balls on the driving range, just enough time to mess with my mind a little more.  And then, yeah, going out and birdieing 16 and then Fred birdieing 16, so that, you know, was just a little more added drama that I didn't really need.You know, Fred's just such an unbelievable competitor that you know he's going to do something on the last few holes.  You know it just doesn't phase him.  He hits one good shot off the other.  Luckily for me, on 18 he didn't make his putt and it just gave me a bit more relaxed feeling I needed to two putt from eight feet.

DAVE SENKO:  You had a chance to play here yesterday?

DAVID FROST:  I had a chance to play yesterday, yeah.

DAVE SENKO:  Your impressions of the course?

DAVID FROST:  Very demanding off the tees, got to hit the tee ball very straight.  I feel, you know, it's a golf course that ‑‑ it's the kind of course where I grew up on where you've got to hit the fairways.  It's the kind of course where if the shot calls for left to right off the tee, you've got to do it, or right to left, you've got to hit it right to left.  On the new courses we play out there, there's not many tree lines that dictate the shots you need to hit, it's wide open and if you need to hit a draw, you can hit a draw, or a fade, you can hit a fade.  It doesn't matter how you get to the middle of the fairway.  The greens are very small.  Luckily the greens aren't very hard so you can try to place the ball in a certain spot and play aggressive golf.  And I think it will be a fun event.  It's nice that it's a pro‑am and the golf course isn't too long, you know, just four hours, easy to get around.  So generally speaking I think it's a good combination for a pro‑am type event.

DAVE SENKO:  What's been the key this year for you?  Any particular area of your game that you've made some improvements on that have shown up?

DAVID FROST:  Yeah, the key issue for me is really to have kept it simple, not getting into mechanics.  I worked hard in the last three, four, five years to get away from the mechanical side of playing golf and just working on one or two things that allows me to swing the club rather than think about mechanical moves out there.

DAVE SENKO:  Questions?

DAVID FROST:  Keep it simple, stupid.

Q.  I think you have five Champions Tour wins in your career?

 DAVID FROST:  I do now, yes.

Q.  So 40 to catch Hale Irwin.  When did you plan on making that happen?

DAVID FROST:  I don't think that's going to happen.  You know, that's unbelievable to think that the guy has won so many tournaments out here.  I think there were more events when he played, not to take anything away from him at all.  You know, we've got a lot of good competitors out here now.  It's almost like you're ‑‑ yeah, like I said, not to take anything away from him, he was so good for so long, and I think not that I haven't thought about answering your question that way, but the equipment has allowed people to play golf better for a lot longer and now our competition is a lot tighter.  But, you know, it's great that technology has evolved like that where we can play for so much longer.  It's nice that we've had guys that can stay competitive and enjoy the game and also make older people enjoy country club life rather than struggling with the hickory shafted driver and hitting it nowhere.  But no, I don't think I'll catch Hale's record.

Q.  I have one other question about him.  Is his reputation as a steely competitor?  How is he viewed by his peers?

DAVID FROST:  Yeah, I've always thought he's a very ‑‑ he's very hard on himself, more so than what I think about him or what other players think about him.  If you observe the way he competes out there, he's tough on himself and knows how to win.  You know, I feel I know how to win.  His game has been of the nature where he's always hit one shot, it's been a nice fade shot and that's been something he's just monotonously did over the years and there was no surprise in his golf game.  He doesn't take a practice swing over his putt, which is amazing, he just scoots in there and hits it.  Doesn't give himself much time to think about things and that's what I try and do, kind of try and keep it as simple as possible and not let all these maybes enter your mind.

Q.  I don't think I've seen that Trump logo on anybody else.  How did you get associated with Trump?  Good story behind it?

DAVID FROST:  I moved to West Palm Beach at the beginning of 2010, rented a place and just started practicing down there, asking if I could use his facility.  I've been friendly with him over the years.  I played the AT&T Pebble Beach with him, he was my partner one year, so we've kind of stayed in touch over the years.  I just approached him to find if I could use his facility down there and he's since gave me membership and in return I wear his logo and I make sure I tell him how much people give me a hard time that I have his name on my chest.

Q.  Are there specific comments?  What do people say?  What are the funniest comments?

DAVID FROST:  I walked out of Costco the other day and the girl wanted to know, Is that Donald Trump?  I said yeah.  She said, No sh*t, eh?  People see him on TV and don't really know what he's like in person, so that's always a question I get, what kind of a guy is he.  I say he's very giving at the club when you see him, he's always happy to meet the guests and the members and it's just very relaxed down there.  He loves golf.  He's a crazy golfer, loves to hop on the helicopter and fly to Jupiter or fly down to Doral.  Doral's just been, I think it's one of the gems that he has.  He has the WCG there, and something he really enjoys, he loves the fact that he has a phenomenal golf course in Scotland.  So he bought another property and did a golf course in the Kluge estate in Charlotte, Charlottesville in Virginia.  So yeah, he's good fun to be around.

Q.  You won two tournaments this year and at the end of each of those tournaments you've led the Charles Schwab Cup.  I know it's early in the season and I guess most people would say, well, that kind of just takes care of itself, but have you ever let yourself think about what it would be like to win the Charles Schwab Cup and how important is that to you?

DAVID FROST:  I don't think about it.  I try and just get to every tournament and play every round as it comes.  My big goal is just to play steady golf Fridays and Saturdays on the three rounders and hopefully be in contention come Sunday afternoon.  As for the majors, same thing, I just want to go there and play steady golf, nothing heroic the first two days and hopefully on Sunday I'm in good position to either contend on the last nine holes or win the tournament.  I wouldn't say I don't think of the Schwab Cup.  Yes, I would rather be in front than behind.  I would rather build on the lead all the time rather than trying to catch up.  That's my goal.  If I'm just trying to be concerned about my golf game, the results will take care of themselves.

Q.  Where's the bicycle now?

DAVID FROST:  The bicycle is on its way to ‑‑ actually, the bicycles, I asked for a pair.  I think it would make a better impression with the two of us on a bike than just one.  So look forward to having the bike down in West Palm Beach sometime, might even take it over to Trump.

Q.  Did you do any form of celebrating with the week off.

DAVID FROST:  Every night, we have at least two bottles of champagne every night.  Got home Monday and spent two hours a day on my fitness, therefore I had to be able to stay on my fitness as I was trying to drink the champagne every night.

DAVE SENKO:  Okay.  Any more questions?  Thank you, David.

DAVID FROST:  Thank you, guys.