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September 15, 2003

Chris Riley


TODD BUDNICK: All right, Chris, we thank you for stopping in today. Second place finish, your third top 3 of the season and your third top 5 finish here at the John Deere. You certainly like this place.

CHRIS RILEY: Yeah, I definitely do. I don't know why, I can't answer that specifically why I like it here, but I seem to play well here, so I always put it on the schedule. It's always nice coming to Moline. John Deere is a great sponsor for our Tour, and I will be back next year.

TODD BUDNICK: When the day started, everybody seemed to have a chance, but Vijay never really let anybody back in.

CHRIS RILEY: I actually had some opportunities on 9, I hit it in there six feet and missed it. I hit driver 4-iron.

10, I hit it in there ten feet, missed that.

11, I hit it 30 feet, three-putted.

12, I hit it in there six feet, missed that.

Made birdie on 14, and I hit a good shot into 16 about three feet, made that.

But other than that, I really didn't have my A-game today, but Sunday out here on the back nine on the PGA TOUR is really tough. It's not like going out there on Thursdays. The putter just didn't perform like I'd like it to, and if I made some more putts I could have been -- I would have had to shoot 4-under on the back nine. I thought 15 was going to do it, so 16, Vijay did well.

Q. Was there a certain point on the backside when you looked at the leaderboard, you realized you weren't going to catch Vijay?

CHRIS RILEY: Not really. I got it to 12 and he was at 13 on No. 14. He must have made a lot of birdies coming in. I tried not to look at the leaderboard because all it does is put added pressure on you. I just tried to play the best golf I could.

Q. Did that surprise you at all? Paul Stankowski mentioned he kept looking up there and nobody was moving on that leaderboard.

CHRIS RILEY: Even though it was playing lift, clean, and place, it was kind of tough to make birdies. I don't know what it is, but it was just a tough thing to make a lot of birdies out there. I don't know if it was -- there were some tough pins, but the greens were soft. There should have been a lot more low scores, but like I said -- plus the format where we played 23 yesterday and came back this morning and started on 17, that's not the norm for the PGA TOUR. It's usually twosomes on Sunday. It was a tough week, but fortunately I hung in there and kept it together.

Q. Were the greens slow or was it just your putting?

CHRIS RILEY: It was definitely me. I put a couple good strokes that didn't go in, but then I hit a couple bad strokes that just were not very good. You usually know when you hit a putt whether it's going in or not, and I really didn't hit any good -- I hit one good putt and it didn't go in. That was pretty much it.

Q. When the players first came here a few years back, they put up some incredible numbers, but we heard guys say two, three, four years down the road when this place starts to mature, you're not going to see these kind of scores. Was that the case?

CHRIS RILEY: I think I shot 16- or 17-under and finished 4th in 2000, the first year it was here. I don't know what I shot last year, I can't remember, but it is definitely getting tougher. It's kind of weird, the more we see it, it should be getting easier. The course is coming along great. This is my fourth one, and like I said, it's always going to be on my schedule because I enjoy coming back to Moline. Even though I've got to drive three hours to Chicago to catch a flight, I'll always come to Moline. It's a great place, a great sponsor.

Q. What's so tough about Vijay?

CHRIS RILEY: I wish I knew so I could be more like him. He's in the Tiger Woods, Davis Love, Mike Weir, their class. I'm trying to get there. I'm not there yet, but I think the more experience I get, the more times I get there, I think I can do what they do. I don't hit it 300-plus yards, but I feel like if my putter is working, I can play with anybody. Vijay is just a world-class player. He's played all over the world, and I'm just trying to get there.

I three-putted No. 2 yesterday from 25 feet.

Then I birdied 8, I hit a driver, 8-iron in there about six feet, made that.

Then I three-putted 11.

I birdied 14, hit a driver and a pitch shot to about three, four feet.

I hit a fat 5-iron from the middle of the fairway, chipped it up about ten feet, missed that.

Hit it three feet on 16 and made it.

End of FastScripts.

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