Q&A with Brad Fritsch
May 10, 2016
By Kevin Prise, PGATOUR.COM
- Brad Fritsch is competing this week at the Rex Hospital Open in his adopted hometown of Raleigh, North Carolina. (Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Ottawa native Brad Fritsch saw his game take a dramatic upturn early this season, with a victory at the Servientrega Championship Presented by Efecty followed by a runner-up finish at the El Bosque Mexico Championship presented by INNOVA.
Consequently, the 38-year-old has secured his return to the PGA TOUR for next season. Fritsch has played two full season on TOUR, most recently in 2013-14, and looks forward to another opportunity.
In advance of teeing it up this week at the Rex Hospital Open in his adopted hometown of Raleigh, North Carolina, Fritsch spent a few minutes with PGATOUR.COM to dish on his favorite course, memorable moments in the game and more.
And here's the airport celebration dinner!!! pic.twitter.com/3UPV1ae72m— Brad Fritsch (@BradFritsch) April 11, 2016
How did you get your start in the game?
My parents are big golfers, and they still play a lot to this day. They introduced me to it. At the age of 5, I played my first full round. I think I shot somewhere in the 200s. They made me count everything, and they’re very strict.
What’s your favorite course that you have ever played?
I’ve played Augusta National once, with a member. That was obviously great. Other than that, probably The European Club in Dublin. I went on a vacation there over Christmas once. It was a mistake, because it was freezing rain and snowing basically, but it was a great golf course.
Anyone you looked up to growing up?
I looked up to Payne Stewart. Our games weren’t exactly close in nature, but I kind of liked his sense of style and he was pretty flamboyant. I enjoyed watching him.
What has been your most memorable moment in the game?
I would say probably either qualifying for the U.S. Open the first time I did it, which was in 2006 … I was really struggling and I happened to qualify; I was in a 5-for-1 playoff. So that was a neat experience. And then probably the putt I made on 18 at Royal Montreal to make the cut in 2014, at the (RBC) Canadian Open, and I happened to have a great weekend … but I made a 40-footer, double breaker, and made the cut on the number. I kind of went nuts. It was (a nice roar). It was really good.
What’s one part of your game that has evolved over the years?
I drive it a lot straighter now. My short game wasn’t very good back then, but it has evolved quite a bit, and I think I’m about a 10-times better putter than I was back when I started.
What do you think you need to do next time around on the PGA TOUR to take the next step?
I think probably playing better on Thursdays and Fridays. My starts were never great. I always flirted with the cut line quite a bit, whether I made it or missed it, so I need to get off to better starts.
If you weren’t a golfer, what do you think you would be doing?
Some kind of law enforcement or like homeland security-type stuff. I grew up, was going to go to law school if I didn’t turn pro. And I was like, nope, no more school for me. It was … four years was enough.
What’s your favorite thing to do to get away from the game?
Obviously go home and see the family. When I’m not doing that, probably just watch football or hockey.
What’s your favorite place that you’ve had the chance to travel to?
I don’t really get to travel much, playing golf all the time (laughs). I thought Chile was really nice. I enjoy going there, and I enjoyed going to Ireland … but what I want to do on a vacation, just me and my wife, is go to some of the old Eastern European cities, like Prague and the old Yugoslavia, stuff like that.
What advice would you give to young up-and-coming players?
You know, if you’re good enough, you’ll probably know it. And stick with the people that got you there, including your coach, caddie, etc. A lot of people will try to get in your ear, agents included, and I think that if you kind of have your team set from the very beginning and go with the people that got you there, I think you’ll have a better chance of success.