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


July 27, 2003

Chris Riley


TODD BUDNICK: Welcome Chris Riley, runner-up at the 2003 Greater Hartford Open after his finish at 2-under 68, 12-under total for the week.

Chris, you got off to that bad start but fought back hard and made a nice charge there today.

CHRIS RILEY: Yes, sir, really on that first tee I was a little nervous. It hadn't been the for a while, that last group on Sunday. You know how the groups here at Hartford are huge, I may have got caught up in the moment. I didn't stay to my game plan: Take a practice swing and get over the ball, hit the ball. I got real and snapped hooked it out of bounds. I got up on 13 and did the same. I hung in there real tough. You know, you just can't hit 2 balls out of bounds on Sunday and win an event. You can but it's very unlikely.

I still thought I had a shot when I chipped in on 15 and Jake chipped it over the green, I thought maybe that was going to be a 3-shot swing. I might have had a chance, but I'm real happy on how I plugged away. I just tried to do the best I can, that's all you can do on those situations. When you hit a ball out of bounds, you feel like you are this big out there. For some reason that second shot is the easiest shot in golf; you always strike it right down the middle. Overall I'm happy with the week.

You know, the last couple of months haven't been as good as I liked. But I knew if I stayed patient I had the game to come out here and do what I had to do.

TODD BUDNICK: Fourth top-10 of the season and best finish.

CHRIS RILEY: Yes. Absolutely. If you would have told me I would take second before I came in, I probably would have taken it. It's always great to have a chance to win the tournament. It's not too often on Sundays you will have a chance. But I will learn from this and hopefully do well when I tee it up at The International in two weeks.

Q. Pete talks much in his rounds, did you talk about anything in particular?

CHRIS RILEY: Peter talks about everything. He is a funny guy. You know what, I will never forget the year I came out here, my rookie year, my rookie year on TOUR and Peter Jacobsen is a star to me when I came out here. I couldn't believe he knew who I was when I came out here in '99. I can't say enough good things about Peter Jacobsen.

I will tell you a little story that he told me on 3, there was a butterfly flying over his ball, he wasn't going to try to swat it. We got on to 14, he said there is a guy at Arizona State, I will never forget this, he hit the ball in the water on a par-3, took a club, swung it across the water and killed a geese. And he said, I don't want anybody after me about environmentalists or anything like that. It was really funny when he said it. Peter talks about everything on the course. You know, I really think that relaxes him, too.

My caddy, I haven't been here a long time, my caddy told me Lee Trevino used to do that, the more they talk, the more relaxed, the more nervous energy they get out. I like to talk too. You only need to focus only 45 seconds of your shot. Other than that, it's nice to talk with someone out there.

Q. On 17, do you think when you stuck that approach shot, I might been able to make my move here?

CHRIS RILEY: Yes, I think he was 13, and I was 11, I was first up on the tee and I hit a great drive. I told my caddy I'm going to take it at the bunker and had a cut shot and I hit it perfect. He gets it up there and strikes it down the middle. I told my caddy I was going to hole this shot. I did the best I could. I hit it in there about ten feet. Jake gets up there and hits it in there 5 feet. That was pretty much it.

And then on 18, he obviously, you know, a 3-shot lead. Not much he could do especially on a par-4 with not much trouble down the right side. Fortunately I birdied the last hole. I was still plugging away. I had an idea there was a clutter of 11's. I didn't want to look for sure. My caddy read the putt, he said, left edge. You are out there, adrenaline is going, I rolled it right in the hole. Well, I didn't see it go in the hole. I was trying to keep my head down there as long as I could and it hit the right lip and went in.

It was a good week, a great week. I haven't had have many seconds out here. This is good.

Q. Chris, was the possibility of the weather ever brought up in your discussion with Peter?

CHRIS RILEY: Oh, yes, he told me -- said boy, we're getting lucky out here, no weather, no nothing. And he goes yeah, I heard that it's supposed to rain about 4:00, we were standing to the 11th tee it was 4:00. We just got lucky. I was kind of surprised. The TOUR usually plays threesomes off 2 tees if they know there is a bad storm coming in although I enjoy playing twosomes on Sunday. There is nothing like it. I think a couple of times at the Buick they played threesomes of the two tees and they just kept going around and around. It's really not the same, the atmosphere of teeing off in the last group. I really welcome that because I needed the experience, I know I need to be there to get better, and I love playing twosomes on Sunday in the last group. There is no pressure like it.

Q. Up close how solid did Peter's game look to you today?

CHRIS RILEY: He didn't make a mistake. He made an incredible shot on 4. It was off the green. He made it up and over the hill. That's what you have to do to win. You have to make some shots that you wouldn't normally make. You know, it's a funny game. But no, he hit it solid, drove it solid, putted solid and made all of his 5-footers, I don't know what he ended up shooting today, maybe a 67. It was solid -- I don't know if he made a bogey, did he? He made one bogey, he 3-putted. But other than that, it was a great round of golf.

Q. You just ran through the last few holes. There on 15, what you did you use out there?

CHRIS RILEY: Sure, I hit a 3-wood in there. I figured it out. The two shots I hit out of bounds, I knew what I was doing wrong. I was swinging left and my hands were getting on the left side instead of swinging out it with it. I kind of think of Calcavecchia, and I think that cut shot under pressure is an easier shot to hit than a nice draw. I hit a good 3-wood up there. I had a chance of it rolling up there and it didn't. That pin was a little iffy this week on Sunday, my ball was going hard and I don't know if it would have stayed on the green, but fortunately it went dead center and went in the hole.

Jake was having trouble there, chipped it over the green. I thought maybe a 3-shot swing there, and I did peek at the leaderboard, I saw there were a bunch of 11's. I went to 11 so I knew it was going to be a tight race, but Jake, he held off everybody good and won the tournament.

Q. Did you hit a lob wedge?

CHRIS RILEY: Yes, a chip shot. It was an easy shot, not under the circumstances. I was on the upslopes and it was a good lie. It was not much there.

Q. 16?

CHRIS RILEY: I hit a good 7-iron, hit it right of the hole about 25 feet. Then on 18, I hit a great drive down the middle. It was in a divot actually. My caddy gave me the right club and I had a good shot there and made the putt.

Q. 17 and 18, what did you hit?

CHRIS RILEY: 17, I hit a cut 3-wood off of there. And hit a sand wedge from 131 playing downwind. 18, I hit a big drive for me and hit 126 hole and hit the same club, the sand wedge.

TODD BUDNICK: Go head through those other 2 birdies, No. 6.

CHRIS RILEY: No. 6, I hit a good drive, a good 4 and a lay up and a wedge to about 20 feet and made that.


CHRIS RILEY: 12, I hit a good drive down the middle and hit a wedge to about a foot.

TODD BUDNICK: That putt on 18.

CHRIS RILEY: Probably about eight, ten feet.

Q. How did you manage to make a birdie with a second ball on the 13th?

CHRIS RILEY: I hit a good drive. I was kind of mad. I was a little upset with myself. Like I said, I hit a good drive for me on my second ball and then hit a 5-wood in there about 20 feet and 2-putted. It is disappointing, but you know, I just got to learn to drive it's straighter under holes that make you real tight. I really believe that's the key -- I have one out here but I believe if I can drive it, drive it a little better then I can win again.

Q. Did you change anything in the game? You had a bad stretch, did you change anything?

CHRIS RILEY: Not really. I just kept working on the things I have been working on. Like the British Open last week, what a tough test that was. It's frustrating, you know. I was telling these guys yesterday, at one point last year I made 19 straight cuts and everything was easy and everything was going in the hole and everything was just Easy Street. I will tell you what, once it starts going the other way, it's hard to get it back. You know, I had a pretty good first part of the year. I got to work on my scheduling. It's my 5th year. I have been playing 2, taking one off, I don't know why. That doesn't work very well for me. You know, it's a learning experience out here. I'm having a pretty solid career so far.

TODD BUDNICK: All right. Thank you very much. Congratulations, Chris.

End of FastScripts....

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