What they said: James DriscollMarch 10, 2011
PGA TOUR staff
MORE INTERVIEWS: Puerto Rico Open transcript archive NELSON SILVERIO: We welcome James Driscoll to the media center here at the Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com. James is 9-under par today. A pretty decent start, I would say. Just kind of take us through your round and what may have clicked out there.
JAMES DRISCOLL: I got off to a good start, and I wish I had a scorecard in front of me. I don't know exactly the holes I birdied, but I birdied six holes in a row right in the middle of the round. I think it was 16, 17 and 18 one, two, three, and that kind of obviously carried me through the day and then threw an eagle in there on the second par-5 on the front nine, my back nine.
Really I made two-putts that you don't expect to make from off the green that are like 50-footers up through about five paces of fairway and up a slope, and both of those went in. So it was kind of one of those days where you felt like you got a little bit of luck but also good shots.
JAMES DRISCOLL: I mean it doesn't hurt that you're at such a nice resort. But I think I've worked on some things in the last week or two that I think are starting to click in with the ball striking and starting to feel more comfortable over the ball. And hopefully I can carry on the next few days.
JAMES DRISCOLL: Yeah, no. It was very calm. The last couple days in the practice rounds and the Pro Am the wind was blowing pretty good, especially in the morning.
I played early on Wednesday, and the wind was blowing about 20 miles an hour, you know, at 8:00 in the morning. And it did that a little bit today, too, but after about five holes it seemed to die down. And hopefully it picks up a lot for the guys in the afternoon, but we had a really nice morning.
JAMES DRISCOLL: Yeah, a little bit of everything.
JAMES DRISCOLL: To get 9, 10, 11-under you have to hit the ball great and make a lot of putts. So it's a combination of really kind of doing everything well. Your mind has to be in a good spot, and you have to make some putts and hit great shots. You can't get by really on just one thing and shoot a 9, 10 or 11.
Q. 63 strokes, you tied a low score. Did you have a chance to make 62??
JAMES DRISCOLL: Well, I was 11-under with three to play, so I mean anything could have happened. If I birdied all three holes or two of them, I could have shot in the 50s, but they were tough holes.
The seventh hole is a pretty tough hole. I hit a good shot, made bogey, unfortunately kind of got a bad kick, but then the eighth hole I hit it solid, but I pulled it in the hazard and made bogey there. So with three holes to go, definitely could have been lower, but I got a few lucky breaks out there, too, so I'm not really looking back thinking that it should have been a lot lower. But it could have been.
Q. Great round today. Can you talk a little bit about when you knew it was going to be a special day and the things that were going through your mind and thoughts, and what you did mentally to finish this round? I know you didn't finish as strong as it was in the middle, but what were the thoughts in your head?
JAMES DRISCOLL: On 16 I missed the green to the right and had -- would have been a really tricky chip, so I pulled out my putter and I had about five paces of fairway to putt through and up a big ridge and made it and then made another putt on the next hole from out of the fringe, too. And a few putts go in that you don't really expect to make, then you start to think, okay, maybe it's my day and maybe it can be a really low number.
And that's kind of what happened. Good things kept happening. You know, I kept having good numbers from the fairway. Like on the second hole, par-5, I drove it into the trees, but punched out and had a perfect wedge number and knocked it to two feet.
It just seemed like a lot of the good shots I hit ended up really close to the hole where you could have days where you're hitting really good shots, but they end up 20 feet because the wind does something or you kind of just misjudge something a little bit. But it was one of those days where a lot of good shots ended up really close to the hole.
Q. Okay. I know your brother Tim was in the gallery today. Can you talk a little bit about how you came to the game growing up and what the game of golf means to you??
JAMES DRISCOLL: Yeah. I started at a young age. I started probably seven, eight years old. I grew up in a family with six older siblings that were all athletic and played a bunch of sports, and I played a bunch of everything growing up.
And I kind of narrowed it down to golf and hockey in high school, and then after high school obviously stuck with just golf.
And you know, it means a lot to me. It's basically my life. It's what I do. You know, 75 percent of the time that's all I do. So it's been fun. It's something I love to do, and I feel very lucky to be able to make somewhat of a living doing it.
Q. You won on the Nationwide Tour, closed out the year at over three million dollars in career winnings. Just talk a little bit about your progression of your career on the PGA TOUR and what winning an event like this would mean to you.
JAMES DRISCOLL: Yeah. I think whenever you have like a 22 or 23-year-old kid who turns pro and you're sure you're going to be the next Tiger Woods, and I thought I would have had more wins at this point in my career. But you also realize how good the other guys are.
And it's been a long learning process just trying to find little ways to get better, and you know, stay positive because the game will really make you discouraged at times. But I think if you just try and keep a good attitude throughout, even though it hasn't gone exactly as planned, just try to stay patient.
JAMES DRISCOLL: Okay. Starting at 12, I hit a 5-iron to three feet. Hit it real close. 13, hit an 8-iron to 20 feet, made it. 15, had 50 yards in, hit it to six feet, made it. 16, made the putt that I was talking about from off the fringe. 17, made a 15-footer from off the fringe. 18, two-putted for birdie.
1, hit a 7-iron to two feet. 2, hit a wedge to three feet. Third hole's another one of those putts that I was talking about from down the swale, up over a ridge and in. Fifth hole, hit kind of a 3-iron hybrid to 10 feet and hit it for eagle. And then missed a six-footer for par at 7 and a 25-footer for par at 8.
NELSON SILVERIO: All right. Thank you.