home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


August 23, 2016

Justin Rose

Farmingdale, New York

ALEX URBAN: We'd like to welcome Justin Rose to the interview room here at The Barclays.

Justin, you're 51st in the FedExCup but you are coming off of a Gold Medal winning performance in the men's golf competition at the Rio games. Just talk a little bit about that experience, what it's been like the last couple of weeks and we'll go into talking about this week.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it's been a very exciting couple of weeks. I really enjoyed my Olympic experience. I was obviously one of the golfers excited about the prospect of going down there to Rio, and just embracing representing your country and embracing being an Olympian. And obviously now to come away with a Gold Medal and be called Olympic Champion is quite clearly just a huge carrot.

The whole experience, I think from start to finish, exceeded my expectations and certainly winning has blown me away in terms of the reach that it has and the global audience that it has and the fact that, yeah, just the feel and like I said, the reach that it's really had for me. I've really noticed a difference from people's reactions and stuff like that.

It's been a busy week because of that back at home but it was really nice to go back to London afterwards and obviously from a Team GB point of view, very, very successful games for us, a record-breaking games and amazing to do that and amazing to be a part of that. Basically it's been about trying to get some recovery the past few days and get my head back on and focus now on all the challenges going forward.

ALEX URBAN: If you would comment a little bit about being here at Bethpage. You've played this golf course in competition a couple of times at a U.S. Open and the last Barclays in 2012. Just talk a out your mind-set on this golf course.

JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it's a great golf course, one that I wouldn't say I've done particularly well on per se, but it's a golf course that should suit me well. It's the type of test that I like. It's a long golf course. Ball-striking pretty much gets rewarded here, I believe.

It's a course that I'm excited about challenging this week. Looks like we've got a great week ahead weather-wise. The course is in good shape what from I hear, and the rough's up, so yeah, it's going to be a good test, which is obviously what Bethpage is all about. It's got that reputation, beware or warning, or whatever that famous sign says.

From my point of view, it's going to be hopefully third time luck hey here.

Q. What was it like when your son saw the Gold Medal?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, obviously Leo, my boy, he never really let's on that he's that proud of me or let's on that he's that excited about golf and some of the trophies I've been able to bring home and this one meant something a little bit different to him. I don't know if it's because kids often get recognized with medals themselves when they do something in sports at a young age. It kind of resonated differently for him.

Yeah, he was probably wearing it more than me for the first couple days that I was home, and yeah, it was very good. Just to see him excited about it made it even more special for me.

Q. And how difficult will it be, you talked about in many times down in Rio, how focused you were going after that gold, and now you have a different focus. How difficult is it to change your mind-set?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it's going to be difficult for sure. Quite clearly that's always more energy expended in terms of everybody wanting to congratulate you, but that brings good energy, too. So it depends how you try to see. I'm going to try and take the positives from it, feed off it.

Obviously I feel confident with my game. It's the first time in a while I've been in contention and to put it away was a great feeling. I'm beginning to putt well and beginning to be comfortable. My fitness is feeling great; therefore, I'm beginning to hit the ball much better, so I feel like I'm rounding into form.

I'm trying to sort of -- well, my narrative heading into Rio was that I had played a lot less golf during the summer or pre the summer than a lot of the other players. I was forced into a break prior to the U.S. Open, had six weeks out and I was hoping that would ultimately prove to be a benefit for me, obviously from Rio onwards, through the Playoffs and The Ryder Cup, there's a lot of golf to be played the next six weeks. I'm hoping that forced break early in the year will now begin to pay off for me.

Q. What sorts of little things feel more familiar coming back here now for a third time, and how is that different than when you come in to play a course for the first time cold?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think it enables you to really relax -- maybe get a little bit more recovery time. You don't feel like you have to be out on the golf course three times, six, seven hours a day, which you do at major championships.

I think you've seen a lot of guys get to make major championships early these days because learning a golf course is obviously imperative when it comes down to one shot. If you can find that one shot through your strategy, it makes all those hours pre-tournament worthwhile.

Obviously we have pretty good notes from the last few years. I rely a lot upon my caddie, Fooch. He already walked the course yesterday, and he'll begin to develop a strategy and a game plan. It's the type of course now that I can rely upon my Wednesday Pro-Am just to refresh the memory, get comfortable with my visuals and then tee off on Thursday.

Q. Will you play a practice round today and tomorrow?
JUSTIN ROSE: I might just rely upon tomorrow to be honest with you given everything else that's transpired the last week. Sometimes there's always that balance of what's going to be best for you. You've got to always have that long-term view of when Sunday comes around, how do I want to feel. And obviously you want to your freshest and your best on Sunday.

It's very easy to try to work towards a Thursday and try and be 100 percent ready for Thursday morning, but I think you need to have one eye on how you're going to feel on Sunday.

Q. In your opening statement, you mentioned that the Olympic medal, I think you used the word, has a different feel to it than some of your other wins and the reactions have been different. In what way, are they different?
JUSTIN ROSE: Well, I think the Olympic Gold Medal has reached a much wider audience. I feel the attention that it receives has been huge outside of the game of golf. I think that it sort of resonated with a lot more people. I believe that it was the biggest TV audience golf has ever had in the U.K. I know that the ratings were pretty good over here, as well.

I think that it's captured the imagination of people who don't play golf because it's an Olympic sport. I think I watch sports that I wouldn't ordinarily watch because they are Olympic sports, and so that's going to be the same for golf. People are going to watch golf that don't ordinarily watch golf because it's an Olympic sport, which can only be good for our game.

I think that was one of the reasons why we were all excited in the hopes that it could attract some growth and some more eyes on our sport, and I think that that's been the case; and I think the fact that it came down to an exciting show down with myself and Henrik, in a very relatable way, where it came down to a couple chips and putts on the last hole. No matter how much you know golf or don't know golf, you can kind of relate to that final hole sort of situation.

So from that point of view, I was very fortunate to be a part of it and it went in my favor. But I think it was a good first showcase for golf. Just the whole atmosphere around the golf in Rio was very positive. The crowd on the Sunday were amazing. People want to say, is it like a major championship or is it like a Ryder Cup.

You have to say it's somewhere in between the two, because it was very patriotic. You had Union Jack flags flying. You had a huge Swedish contingent out there cheering on their man. So from that point of view, yeah, it felt very different from a normal tournament. Pressure is always self-inflicted, and it meant a lot to me. And so therefore, I was kind of feeling it from that point of view, as much as you would certainly in a major.

It was just a unique tournament. That's why I can't compare it to anything else. For me it's right up there with anything I've achieved in the game of golf. But kind of it lives in a different world. If you want to kind of -- I kind of see it at the top. If this is the major, this is the Gold Medal but all of my golf achievements sit in this column, whereas this is something pretty unique and by itself.

Q. Going into the Olympics there was a big sense of mystery about how Olympic golf would be received and then the health issues that kept other guys away. Now that we've seen what happened with you and Henrik and with Inbee Park, and you're going to a place next time in four years in Japan where it's a huge game and a huge market and I'm sure the sponsors will be clamoring for it. How do you think the other players, guys who turned down the opportunity to represent their country, how do you think they will be affected by what they saw you achieve?
JUSTIN ROSE: Well, yeah, obviously everybody who didn't go is a world-class player and I think we all know who we are talking about, and they are all competitive guys and they all want a piece of the action. I'm pretty sure that they are going to probably want to have a good run at it in 2020.

I saw it as an opportunity and hopefully now it's been well received. Hopefully it can move forward from here. I don't think it could have gone better from that point of view. I think it was fantastic that there were six medalists in golf and I think they were all from different countries, which I think is also great for the game.

Yeah, going forward to 2020, I think -- well, I hope that obviously the reaction will be a lot more positive. Rio, obviously there were some other factors involved in guys' decision-making and hopefully that will be a bit of a smoother process in Tokyo.

Q. You kind of referenced the Gold Medal when you got in here, a lot of guys do stuff with the Claret Jug, bring it around, the green jacket. What have you done with the medal? Did you sleep with it the first couple of nights? Is it here with you? Where is it?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, much easier to travel with than a normal trophy. You can just kind of slip it in your pocket and then carry on. So yeah, it is traveling with me, yeah, so it's around.

Everyone wants to feel the weight of it and that's the unique thing, and that's what's curious about it. Everyone wants to see, "Oh, how heavy is it?" That's been the reaction: "Oh, it's heavy, isn't it." That's kind of been the unique thing about the medal versus a trophy.

I guess, yeah, you can drink out of the Claret Jug and I guess the Olympic Gold would be a nice coaster for the glass of wine (laughter).

Q. I assume you just got here today, right?

Q. Will you bring it and show it to any of the guys here?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, it's not on site. A few people have mentioned, where is it, where is it, so maybe it's something that I can keep in the golf bag or pop in the locker or something. It's a unique and iconic thing, Olympic Gold.

Growing up in golf, it's not something we associated with our sport but I think it's been a huge opportunity for us to kind of experience what it is like to be an Olympian and Olympic Champion and to see a Gold Medal, I'd be excited to see anybody else's Gold Medal, whether it be Usain Bolt's or whoever it could be. It's definitely an iconic piece of hardware. It does capture a lot of people's imagination and they are excited to see it and feel it and hold it.

Q. As a follow, you referenced, you know, obviously all the important golf ahead starting with this week. Is it almost human nature, though, to have a little bit of a hangover after the high, the unique high that you had over there and is that something that you have to battle this week a little bit?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, I think it is probably human nature for sure. I think it's going to be a demanding run for everybody, though. I don't think -- it's not going to be that different for me. Henrik did a great job obviously after the so-called hangover after The Open Championship to still bring his best game.

And I think that often we play well in runs out here on Tour: You saw Adam Scott at the beginning part of the year put a run together. Dustin put a run together in the summer. So hopefully I can put a run together myself. Shouldn't be one-and-done. That's sort of my mentality going into the next few weeks.

Q. One other thing about the Olympics. Nobody's getting paid to win there. You're just playing for those three medals. How does that change the dynamic when you're in that tournament, just competing for your country, and what was it like, do you think, for not only you, but even the second and third place finishers to stand on that podium?
JUSTIN ROSE: Well, it can only go on from what I've heard from Kuch and stuff, the little I talked to them obviously in the moment of the medal ceremony, it's a special moment. Certainly third place means something at the Olympics, because you come away with a medal. You've contributed a medal, to the medal tally of your country and I think everybody is proud of how your particular country represents themselves at the Olympics, so you feel like you've contributed to that, so it's important.

Obviously we all love to win, but you see people stretching over the line when they are in third or fourth players and there's a big difference between third and fourth in the Olympics, as there's a huge difference between first and second normally in any sport. But in the Olympic the it probably goes down third and fourth as equally as important.

The rest of your question was?

Q. Do you think it affected guys, the thinking about going there, that there's no money.
JUSTIN ROSE: It certainly wasn't part of my decision-making process. Probably a large part in the whole -- cost a lot to go down there and get it done but that's not what it's about. It's about competing for your country. It's about being part of something incredible.

You know, there's plenty of opportunity to play for a lot of money we play for out here on TOUR. So that certainly from my point of view was not ever part of the decision-making process, and I've just realized how much it means to people and how much it's meant to me to be a part of it, and obviously to come out with a gold is just amazing.

Q. Just the intensity of these Playoffs, having been through them, and is it a different mind-set now that it kind of starts and there's a little elimination going to happen here?
JUSTIN ROSE: Yeah, for sure. Everyone's got their mind on East Lake. Everyone knows how the FedExCup is structured. Everyone knows they are in the top five going into THE TOUR Championship. You've got that opportunity to win it.

So everyone's vying for position now. I've played THE TOUR Championship every year since 2010 and that's something I'm proud of, and this year I'm outside of the bubble right now. So I'm 50th I think you said, or 51st.

But in 2011, I was maybe 70th at this time. I know that it's one good week; one good week sets up my whole FedExCup at this point of the season. That's all you're looking for. You're looking for that opportunity going into East Lake to sort of bring out your best game when it really, really matters.

So for sure, every single one of these weeks is an important step towards the grand finale, yeah.

ALEX URBAN: Thank you for your time. Good luck this week.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297