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May 25, 2018
Benton Harbor, Michigan
JULIUS MASON: Good afternoon, everyone. I'm the PGA of America's Julius Mason and I'd like to thank you for joining us today for a very special announcement that honors 18-time major champion and Harbor Shores course designer, Jack Nicklaus and his wife, Barbara.
But first, we will take a look back at how major championship golf became a reality here in Benton Harbor, Michigan.
Joining Jack and Barbara at the head table today is PGA of America President, Paul Levy, and Whirlpool Corporation Chairman of the Board, Jeff Fettig.
Paul, how about you begin by explaining the special relationship the PGA of America has with golf's greatest champion.
PAUL LEVY: Thank you, Julius, I'd be happy to.
Two years ago, at the Ryder Cup, the PGA of America celebrated Jack's 50-year anniversary of PGA membership.
Jack became a PGA professional in 1966. Since then, our relationship with one another has expanded a bit. Jack's obviously a record-tying 5-time PGA Champion, tied with Walter Hagen, and a 2-time Ryder Cup captain.
He also won this KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship in 1991.
And these days, he's a proud PGA REACH trustee.
JULIUS MASON: Paul, we also know Barbara pretty well too, don't we?
PAUL LEVY: Barbara received our inaugural PGA First Lady of Golf Award in 1998. This award recognized individuals not only for their contributions to the game but for using golf as a vehicle to give back.
But Barbara's history with tying in golf to charitable giving and specifically children goes back decades and has only grown in the last 20 years, most notably with the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation and the Nicklaus Children's Hospital, the flagship hospital in Miami, and 14 outpatient centers throughout Florida.
The PGA of America has also been fortunate to be involved with Barbara and Jack in their Junior Golf Empowerment Fund, as well as Nicklaus-PGA teaching grants for the first tee.
JULIUS MASON: Paul, you talked about "Jack" the major champion. But we also have a relationship with "Jack," one of the world's greatest golf course architects.
PAUL LEVY: Jack's course design is renown worldwide and the PGA has been a direct beneficiary, first at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, which has hosted the 2008 Ryder Cup, three PGA Championships, and a pair of Senior PGA Championships. And, of course, right here at Harbor Shores.
When the PGA was made aware that Jack Nicklaus was involved in the project, our interest was immediately piqued. How can it not be, right? And here we are, four championships into a wonderful relationship with not only KitchenAid and Whirlpool Corporation, but the communities of Southwest Michigan. It all started with a vision, a designer and ultimately a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course.
JULIUS MASON: Thanks, Paul. Jeff, the Harbor Shores development is arguably the most impactful transformational story in the entire golf world. I'm guessing 10 years ago, everyone likely must have had visions of what this could become, but honestly, could you have ever imagined how far it has come?
JEFF FETTIG: Julius, no, I don't think any of us could. I'll never forget when we were trying to figure out what to do to this property, which was really wasteland in this community and it's situated on Lake Michigan and the Saint Joe River, the Paw Paw River, and so we ultimately went to Jack and said, you know, we have an idea, and it's about redeveloping our community, we think we have a great location for this, but we need someone with your skills and reputation as a, not only the great golfer of all time, but as a designer, and so Jack said, okay, I'll come take a look at it.
And I don't know if I have the exact expression right but when we showed him the property he said something like, where do you want me to build this thing? But with that, Jack truly delivered an amazing vision, transformed this 520 acres, which was, you've seen the pictures, it was something very different in those days.
The restoration of the wetlands, the waterways, the park land, the dunes really has been an economic driver of development throughout our community. Harbor Shores over the last only eight years since we opened, not even eight years, it's become a must-see destination in the Midwest, it's brought with it many businesses, restaurants, beautiful beaches of Lake Michigan, I think the best in the Midwest, with that investment.
Since the beginning of this development we're now nearing 400 million dollars of investment in this whole area. First with the golf course, but then almost 200 million dollars in residential and other commercial development. So that's part of it.
The other side is the people side. You see here at this tournament 1.700 volunteers come from all over to be at this tournament. I think over 500 of those, this is their fourth year that they have done it. And I've had fans and professionals say, one of the things that makes this unique is the hospitality and helpfulness of all of our volunteers. We have also had the opportunity to have a great impact, in fact when Jack helped -- we'll talk about this later -- helped open the tournament with the exhibition, one of the all-time we think, the prize money was a million dollars. And that was -- and they all, Jack and his colleagues all donated that to help us begin to build the Boys and Girls Club and First Tee facilities that we have here today.
And lastly, I would just say, the other thing that's I think for all of us that have been around for the last eight years, we have seen kids who start out when they're in high school taking bags off cars and putting them on golf carts and those same kids now graduated from college. And that's really touching for all of us to see.
JULIUS MASON: You talked about the vision becoming a reality. Can you get into a little bit more of the community programming that's actually happening around here today?
JEFF FETTIG: Yeah, there's a tremendous amount. As I mentioned the First Tee Program, again, I think we're the only facility in the Midwest that has a First Tee Program on-site. Last year we had 850 kids throughout the community participate in that, which, given the size of our community, is truly phenomenal.
Earlier this week with the support of the PGA and PGA REACH, we announced on Monday that we're going to introduce Junior League Golf to Southwest Michigan.
Junior League Golf is -- let's call it the equivalent of Little League baseball for golf and kids to have fun and enjoy the game. We already have six teams signed up, 72 kids and through the support of the PGA and of KitchenAid we decided that this would be free to all kids and we would make sure that we support it and support it throughout our local community.
Lastly, I would just say, and I can't tell you how many different charitable organizations Harbor Shores has been part of, we did a tally the other day and we said we know in the last six years we have raised over 40 million dollars in our local community, which is all being given back to kids.
JULIUS MASON: Thanks, Jeff, very much. Jack, welcome back to Benton Harbor.
JACK NICKLAUS: Thank you, Julius.
JULIUS MASON: It's been awhile since you've been here, I know you landed just about an hour or so ago, but on a quick drive by before you got to the golf course, what did you think?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, it's changed a lot. When I got here I suppose it was probably 10 years ago, Mark brought me up here, introduced me to Jeff, told us what they wanted to do. This was probably the most diverse property that we have ever done a golf course on from the beautiful dunes of Lake Michigan to a toxic ways Superfund area on 14 and a lot of everything in between.
But we drove in today and saw tremendous development, we saw when we drove down the Main Street of Benton Harbor when we first got here, it was all empty. Now it's full. We just had a very brief thing -- there obviously were no hotels, I now see the beautiful hotel over there. You call it the Harbor Shores Hotel is that what you call it? The Inn at Harbor Shores, that's what you call it. And all things that have happened, I'm just a little small piece of it and the golf course I mean, here's the gentleman, Jeff Fettig at Whirlpool who just absolutely had a mission and have certainly gone after that mission and have successfully corralled it, you might say and it's grown with it.
The golf course itself, I had a young man and I sort of tell you a little story, I always do when I do a golf course I have one of my guys come out and do a rough, how can this golf course and where can it go, so it gives me something to look at. And the young man I had my design associate was a fellow named Chris Rule, who is not in the business anymore, but is from Grand Rapids and Chris is a really talented young man, I'm not sure why he's not in the business anymore, but he's not. But anyway, Chris came out, went through the golf course, we had a routing, I remember we started from the middle of a factory, that was the first tee, and we went around the golf course, I would say that 99.9 percent of the golf courses I've done I've blown the routing up, started over and did something myself. I couldn't figure out a better routing than what he did. That's the first time and only time it's ever happened on a golf course to me. Chris did a great job, he stayed here throughout the project, did a great job, I think that the, I give my guys a little bit of freedom and how they interpret what I ask them to do. I think that keeps people's interest in what they do. It keeps their creativity alive, it sort of gets them thinking about what to do and I gave Chris a little bit of freedom like with the bunkers that you're looking at. Chris liked that kind of a look on the bunkers so I said, fine, as long as the strategy is what I want, as long as it fits in right I have no problem with that. So a lot of this golf course is Chris Rule a lot of it is Jack Nicklaus, a lot of it is a lot of other people and a lot of it is Jeff and Whirlpool and I think that a lot of it is a lot of the other people that worked out here that had a passion for developing something here. To see this golf course go, have it opened eight years ago with Arnold, Tom, Johnny Miller and me was something pretty special. Had an interesting day.
JULIUS MASON: We're going to get to that in a second.
JACK NICKLAUS: All right, I won't get into that yet. We had an interesting day, but it's come a long way and we had, I guess this is your fourth PGA Championship, I've been here, I came up for one of them, I think. A couple years ago. Or four years ago, I'm not sure which it was. A couple years ago I was up, wasn't I. I think it was two years ago.
JEFF FETTIG: Yes.
JACK NICKLAUS: So, anyway delighted to be here.
JULIUS MASON: So in 2010 we opened, eight years later we're hosting a fourth major championship on this golf course. Does that seem a little remarkable to you? Does it seem fast?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well you could have it every year.
I think it's really great of the PGA of America to work with Whirlpool and come to a thing where every other year they brought it here and I think your contract runs for another, what us eight years or something like that, so you have another four championships coming here. I think that's fantastic. You produced some pretty good winners and I think you'll probably continue to do so. It's an awful big trophy to carry all the way home though, isn't it? That's a big trophy. But anyway, I think the golf course is a beautiful golf course, I'm very proud of it.
JULIUS MASON: Jack, thank you very much. Barbara, you, can you talk a little bit about why children have seemingly been the focus of everything you and Jack have done philanthropically?
BARBARA NICKLAUS: Well I think a personal experience probably helps and those of you who know me have probably heard this story but when our daughter was about 11 months old she started choking. And by the time I would get her to the doctor or actually he would come to the house, she would be fine. Finally after about two months of this -- and I'll make this brief -- he said, there's something wrong with this child. So they did an X-ray, had to do a bronchoscopy. Well she had inhaled blue crayon so of course when it got stuck in her windpipe it choked her but then it moved and it wasn't going anywhere. So in the process of the bronchoscopy they dropped a piece in her lung and she was in an oxygen tent at 11 months for six days. So Jack and I are young parents, sitting in the hospital and we kind of looked at each other and said, you know, if we're ever in a position to help anyone, we want it to be children. So I think that's where it kind of started and we feel so blessed that golf has been our vehicle to open a lot of doors to help a lot of children and every penny from the Memorial Tournament goes to Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus and then they just complemented us by putting our name on Nicklaus Children's Hospital in Miami. They wanted a more global look and we are now serving all of 50 states and 119 countries. So we're very proud of that. And when Jack and I just see one child -- he's been a little more active the last few years and he's seen a lot of these children -- and he just melts. So it's been wonderful and we just feel so blessed that we have been able to help children.
JULIUS MASON: I see it in your eyes and I see it in Jack's face, it's really, really special, Barbara. Thank you very much. Jack, all right, you wanted to jump ahead, we're going to go there right now with this thing. Golf course designers have different ways to christen their golf course, their masterpiece. Jack Nicklaus being Jack Nicklaus does it the only way he knows how and let's take a look at this video.
JACK NICKLAUS: Now before that happened Arnold putted it, it came halfway up and right back by him and off the green.
JACK NICKLAUS: What was so hard about that?
JULIUS MASON: All right, take us a little behind the scenes, the conversation.
JACK NICKLAUS: Okay, well first of all let's take the hole. Now you saw where Johnny was. When I originally did the hole the green was up on top of the hill. And we looked at it and said, you know, I've had, I had approach shot going down below and I said that's a pretty hard pitch from down below. And I said, I think they probably would do a lot better with a putter. And I thought that the shot up at the top may be a little hard for most of the people that are going to play the golf course. I said, why don't I just bring the green down the hill. Now I don't think very many people are going to, the pin, to be on the bottom of the hill and very many people are going to be on top wanting to play that, it's hard to get it on top to start with, so if they got it on top they would probably putt it off the green. But if you're on the bottom they have a shot at getting to the hole. So that's what I did. Johnny, we were playing the a scramble, and Johnny knocked it on the green in two. Arnold putted first, hit the ball, made about three quarters of the way up the hill and didn't hit it hard enough, came rolling right by him and watched it roll by him off the green. And Johnny said, well, you know, he said, no way to make this, he says, you got to wedge it. Well I'm sitting there and I said, oh, my gosh, here we are, opening a brand new golf course, everybody's seeing this on television is going to come here and want to wedge the ball on this green. I could just see the divots on here.
So I went down and said, no, no, no, Johnny, you can putt this, this is not that hard. And you saw what happened. I mean I didn't line it up, I didn't do anything I just whacked it and it went in the hole. Maybe I should have done that for a lot more through the years. But anyway, that was kind of fun, we all had a lot of -- I think it's gotten a couple of what do you call it, views.
JULIUS MASON: It's gone viral, Jack, yes.
JACK NICKLAUS: Just a couple.
JULIUS MASON: Jeff, we have known you for an awful long time, we like to call you Jeff Big Fettig because you just do big things. Looking at this foursome on this green right now, it doesn't get bigger than that to open up a golf course.
JEFF FETTIG: Well, you know we had a lot of discussion about this and really I mean actually when they were warming up on the driving range Johnny Miller actually took over kind of as a emcee and he introduced the three legends, Arnold, Jack and Tom and he says, he called himself a mini-legend.
But we were thinking about this later on we said, I'm not sure, ever, in a foursome for a golf exhibition that you've had more champions than we had in this group. So we went and added it up and in these four players they have three U.S. Amateur titles, they have 234 PGA and Senior PGA tournament wins and they have 54 majors in the PGA and Senior PGA. And I don't know anybody that keeps records on these things, but I would venture to say that this is the greatest foursome that he's ever played the game of golf and we had them here to open Harbor Shores.
JULIUS MASON: Thank you very much. Jack, back to what's happening this week. We're going to crown a champion on Sunday, hopefully, of the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. From a golf course designer perspective, if you get in front of a television and watch this championship, are you watching the competition or are you watching how these players play your golf course and are critical about what happens?
JACK NICKLAUS: A little bit of both. You don't show enough of the golf course to really see the nuances of what you've done, but you see how it's played, the scores they make, how certain holes are difficult in certain areas, and so on.
Yeah, I watch that. I mean they got the Memorial Tournament coming up this week I'll do the same thing there and when you guys played the PGA at Valhalla I did the same thing there. I always look at it and see how they're playing, what they're doing, where they can attack, where they can't attack, what's difficult, what's not difficult. What, if I see where they have a problem place, do we need to adjust it. Those are the kind of things you do.
You're interested -- people ask you, what's my favorite course and I say, I say do you have a favorite child? Well I got over 300 children and 300 courses. So, you know, so I can't have a favorite one. They're all my favorites. So Harbor Shores is my favorite -- usually the one I'm at that day is my favorite for that day, obviously. But they have kept the golf course in great shape, they brought in the Senior PGA, we had a great opening with the guys, this place has gotten some pretty good recognition of a very short period of time and we're very proud of what contribution that the golf course has made to the revitalization of Benton Harbor and the community and everything that goes on here.
JULIUS MASON: Very good. Ladies and gentlemen, you heard it straight from Jack's lips, Harbor Shores is his favorite golf course ... today.
Jeff, I believe you have a very special announcement to make on behalf of the PGA of America and Whirlpool Corporation.
JEFF FETTIG: We do. Barbara and Jack, in recognition of all that the Nicklaus family has done for Michigan's great Southwest and part of your unwavering commitment that golf serve as a vehicle for not only great golf but community redevelopment, the PGA of America and Whirlpool Corporation are proud to announce the creation of the Jack and Barbara Nicklaus KitchenAid Senior PGA Champions for Change Scholarship Program. This is an annual scholarship of $25,000 a year to be given to a young member of the Benton Harbor community who has graduated from our local community college and is moving on to a four-year school. The program works with kids in both the Benton Harbor Boys & Girls Club and the First Tee Program to prepare them for success. The scholarship is designed to inspire the recipients to create their own golden opportunities through education as demonstrated by, by and made possible through what Jack and Barbara have stood for, for their entire lives: Living with integrity and giving back to others. So it's our honor to establish this scholarship in your names.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well thank you, Jeff, much appreciated. I know that Barbara and I are very honored to have that, our name on a scholarship that benefits kids from the Benton Harbor area. It's a little different scholarship, you go through a junior college first before you get, go there, so you know that the kids that are going to get it are going to be serious kids, kids that really want to get an education, they want to go on and do that. So we're very honored to do that and we thank you so much for the honor and we just hope that a lot of kids find great use for it and develop into great citizens.
JULIUS MASON: Jeff, Paul, very nice move, Jack and Barbara, congratulations very, very much. Ladies and gentlemen, the floor is yours, if have you a question please raise your hand we'll get a you microphone so we can hear your question. Raise your hand and we'll get it to you right away.
Q. Good to see you again. Jack, what has Barbara meant to you through the years in your golf career and now what you guys are trying to do?
JACK NICKLAUS: Do you want just a general answer or a quantitative?
BARBARA NICKLAUS: Now that's pressure, since I'm sitting here.
JACK NICKLAUS: I know.
Q. However you want to answer it.
JACK NICKLAUS: Generally, you know, she's been the guiding light behind what we have had in our family, she's allowed me to play golf, she allowed me to do golf courses, she supported me when I did that. She knew and was very wise as a very young lady to realize that I didn't need to come home to confrontation, I needed to come home to support. And I needed support when I would go. I always loved the story that Barbara uses about with Winnie Palmer and Arnold. And Barbara asked Winnie, she says, well how do you handle when you have an argument or something like that. She says, well, if I get mad at Arnold on Tuesday, I would be afraid to say anything because I was afraid I was going to mess up his game and ruin his week. And then by the time Sunday rolled around I forgot what I was mad about. So Barbara, I think, probably used a little bit of that same philosophy and I think she probably had to use it a lot of times. But from that standpoint I think she was the support behind what we have done all our life.
Now, when I basically stopped playing golf, and Barbara when the Honda tournament came to Florida, it was about 14 years ago that we started our own foundation that's when I told her, do you want to go for this and she said yes and we did that. Since then I've been the support for her, because that's been her dream, her wishes, the ability to be able to help kids and be part of it has been something that is totally different. The PGA TOUR has always been about charity and raising money, but we never really paid a whole lot of attention to it, other than we went, we played the tournament, we said, isn't that great, they raised a half a million dollars or a million dollars or five million dollars for charity, somebody will get a great benefit. When you get right in the middle of it and find out what happens and just see the actual kids and the results that happen and it's unbelievable. And so that's what we have seen, I have more fun with that than ever playing golf. I can tell you a lot of stories about a lot of different things and a lot of different kids, but it's really great.
Quantitatively, she's got at least 15 of the 18 majors.
Q. Jeff, besides the golf course and the real estate, there also was a lot of revitalization of the Paw Paw River. Can you comment on that?
JEFF FETTIG: Sure. I tell people the story, before Harbor Shores was developed my wife and I lived here 25 years. I had never seen the Paw Paw River. Didn't even know there was one there. So with the redevelopment of Harbor Shores, that really stimulated multiple interests to not only clean up what is a beautiful river and waterway and wetlands, but to do, to extend it. And I mean there are even future plans for trails and things like that that extend way beyond Harbor Shores. So if you take that, if you take our 12-mile walking path, you see kayaks all the time there having a great time and people having a great time. And this area, it's just a beautiful recreational area that I don't think anybody even knew about before.
Q. Jack, a lot of sports since the great recession have been struggling since the great recession with as far as getting participants, attendance and that. But golf is stronger than ever. Is there a certain thing that you a test to why that is so?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I think that we have probably got a little complacent in the game of golf and we realized that a lot of other sports were doing things that we didn't do and we needed to get on the stick. PGA of America, the USGA, the PGA TOUR, all realized that the game of golf, if between make some changes and do some things, the growth of the game is not going to happen. And I think they have all done a lot of things and are continuing to work with it, the PGA REACH is one, the PGA's schools are another, the junior schools, we have, the TOUR brings in kids every week, the First Tee from the kids or from the TOUR. The USGA is constantly trying to figure out programs and so forth that they can work with. We're aware that golf is an expensive game, we're aware that golf is a hard game and we're also aware that golf takes a long time. So those are issues that we're all aware of and we all need to work on. So I think that we got ahead of the game, some of the other sports haven't, and have taken awhile to catch up, but I think we're moving along very nicely now and I think we'll continue to do nicely.
And let us remember where we came from and we came from a sport that took five hours and only, you only had elite people, theoretically, playing the game, and you had every golf course you tried to do was the toughest golf course to challenge the world. Well, we don't need that, we need other ways to bring people to the game. I think Topgolf has been an important part of bringing people into the game. I think that -- and those type, there's several of those type of things now. But there's many things that have happened that I think have helped golf grow and I think we're going to continue to see golf grow at a pretty good rate.
Q. I wanted to ask, in general when you come to your golf courses and you see these tournaments that are being put on, what does it mean when you see the amount of volunteers that we have, that Jeff covered before of how many come out just to support and volunteer their time for these tournaments.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well we couldn't have golf tournaments without volunteers, that's for sure. And they're people who love the game and people who love the cause of what you're developing in the community. There's a whole variety of reasons why people come out. Also it occupies people's time too. That's another thing that they do. They like to be part of events in their area. So there's a lot of reasons why people come out, but we're very thankful for them, always have been thankful that we have had volunteers in the game of golf. It's the back bone of what we do. So every week you see people that maybe never even see a golf shot hit and as a matter of fact most of them probably don't see a golf shot hit. But they volunteer their time and are dedicated to what's going on and I think that's unbelievable that that can happen in any sport and golf really needs it.
Q. Shifting gears a moment going back in history, you're the only golfer to win two different majors on different tours right up the street from where you live. 1971 --
JACK NICKLAUS: Do what?
Q. Winning two different majors on two different tours right up the street from where you live. 1971, the PGA Championship in Palm Beach Gardens, and then 1991 further down the street at PGA National Resort. Could you give us a couple recollections about 1991 when you won the Senior PGA Championship?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, that was 27 years ago. I guess I shot the lowest score. I don't remember much else about it, to be very honest. I have no idea who finished second or anything. But it's always great to be able to play a tournament living at home. Both of those tournaments were at PGA National, and PGA National changed, but Gary Player was our house guess in '71, and Gary always tells the story about how Barbara would fix breakfast and he would say, well, he says -- so she put down two plates and Gary said, Jack, what's out there, and then he would switch the plates, just in case.
And of course he's obviously being facetious.
But it's great to be able to come home. I love playing golf at home. I won one at Doral, one at Inverrary, one at Muirfield, won a lot of tournaments near the place that I resided or had a place and loved being there. So, but I don't know there's any big deal about that, it's just, it's actually kind of nice to be there where you've got friendly fans who you know are there rooting for you.
Q. Couple guys are two rounds in. From your perspective what's the best piece of advice to score low here and maybe get a win at the Senior PGA?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well I don't think it's any different here than it is any other golf course. I think we try to challenge -- I don't know how you set up the golf course, but they try to challenge as much as we can for the level of golfer that we have. What are you playing the golf course at?
PAUL LEVY: I think 68.
JACK NICKLAUS: 68. And the golf course has got how much in it? 72?
JEFF FETTIG: 71.
JACK NICKLAUS: 71. So they're playing it and they're playing at an appropriate level for the Senior Tour. I don't think any golf course or any tournament, they're all the same yet they're all different. And all golf tournaments you've got to be able to prepare yourself for the event, you've got to have discipline, you got to have, you got to be smart, you got to know when to be aggressive, when not to be aggressive. When to sort of bite your lip and lay up someplace. I mean you've got all those kind of things that you have to do. To win any tournament you have to do that. And rarely do you see somebody who just runs the table being aggressive and wins. Might do it for a day or two, usually it catches up with them.
So that's, I get a lot of young kids that come to me, a lot of young Tour players, and they talk to me and I talk to them a little bit about that type of thing. I tell them, I says you got to be prepared, you got to be disciplined, you got to understand who you are and what you can do and what shots you can hit. These guys even at 50 plus year of age, there's some shots they excel at and some they don't and you got to take your strong suits and try to overcome that over your weak suits. So I think that this golf course here is a golf course that you got to drive the ball pretty straight, you got to be pretty accurate on it, the greens have got a little bit of spice in them, you got to put the ball in the proper part of the green there, so you have the putt to be able to make it. I don't know what you got the greens running at but my guess is probably 11 to 12, do I have that right?
JULIUS MASON: Kerry Haigh would tell you championship speeds.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well whatever Kerry means by that, it should be about, it should be between 11 and 12 on this golf course. We design golf courses to try to have a certain speed and I think that's the speed that I had envisioned here. You could make them get over the top if you go much more than 12. It would be fairly easy if you go much less than 10 or 10 and a half. So I don't think there's any formula for it, each guy's got to figure his own way to be able to, in his own way, and he wouldn't be here if he wasn't a good player because you don't get on the PGA Senior Tour or on the PGA Senior Championship without being a fairly good player to start with.
Q. Just over a month and a half ago your grandson makes the hole-in-one at Augusta. We saw how much it meant to you then. Do you still get goose bumps thinking about it at all and have you talked about it much when you have the family together?
JACK NICKLAUS: We actually went to Augusta this last weekend, it was the last day the course was open, so I took up my oldest boy Jack and his boy Jack and took up Gary and GT, his son. And we went up and played with another member and some friends and we just had a sort of a day. And we played the golf course, the big golf course and we got around to wanting to go play the par-3. And some weather came in and we didn't get a chance to play it. And I looked over at GT. I said, GT, I'm sorry, we're sorry, and he said, I had a hole-in-one the last time I was there, so I'm just fine.
So we, from my standpoint, things that I've done, I'm obviously very proud of what I've done and what I've played and won, but, you know, that doesn't mean anything as it relates to when something happens with your kids or your grand kids. And I suppose particularly your grand kids because you're still doing a lot of stuff while you're kids are doing things. I'm not doing a whole lot now so when I watch my grand kids do things, I get excited about it.
On Sunday, which was Easter, we had Easter brunch then went out and played nine holes. And GT and I played and I always ask the grand kids when they're going to caddie for me, I said, do you really want to hit a ball. And he says, oh, yeah, yeah absolutely I want to hit a ball. None of my siblings or none of my cousins have ever gotten it on the green. Okay. So his dad saw it and was with him on Monday night at the Masters club dinner. And so he said, oh, I said to him, I said, well, I said, if you want to hit a ball, I says you'll probably make a hole-in-one. And he said that would be great. So he went to his dad on Tuesday night and he says, dad, wouldn't it be neat if I made my first hole-in-one out at Augusta tomorrow. And he says, and Gary says, well, don't get your hopes up, but he says, yeah, that would be great. Well anyway, we went out and he had the jump suit on, we went to the practice range and I said, do you want to hit a couple balls? Yeah. He hit three shots. Now he's got my golf clubs, my golf ball, which he doesn't know how it will fly, he's got this jump suit on, which is probably one size at least too small for him and he's a big kid. And we got around to 9 and he took a practice swing and he took up half the practice tee, which wasn't a very good swing. But he hit the shot and it was a beautiful golf swing he made and it hit there, and of course Gary Player had a mic on and Gary says, that's really right, right in the right place, he says, that's got a chance, that's heading for the hole, you know, he's commentating on it. And he said well you wait -- and of course Gary is named after Gary Player, so GT is actually still, still a name after Gary too. He's been a great friend and as great a friend as I've had in golf forever. So to have him there, be there and Tom Watson -- and Gary and Tom and I all played well in the tournament, it was a great day, it was great fun. So we went back and played and we played on the big course and GT was even par after 14 and he played the back tees. He played the back tees as did everybody else but another member and me. And he ended up bogeying the last four holes and shot 76, but that's still a pretty good round for playing Augusta National from the back. So he's going to be a nice player once he learns how to play golf. Right now he can play golf but once he learns what I'm talking about, playing golf as tournament golf he'll be a good player.
JULIUS MASON: Jack, Scott McCarron shot a 68 today, he's leading this major championship at 8-under and I can't believe I'm going to get ready to do this because this has never happened since I've been doing news conferences, he has a question for you.
SCOTT MCCARRON: Jack, I have a question for you.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well it's about time. I wondered where you were. Nice round.
SCOTT MCCARRON: When you have a lead at a major or near the lead in a major, what did you like to eat on that Friday night and did Barbara make you do the dishes?
JACK NICKLAUS: You know -- Jeff said cheese burger.
I go back, I go back -- I'm going to answer that in a little different way. I go back to the Presidents Cup in South Africa. And the, we had a gala that we had to go to on Friday night or Saturday night whatever it was -- Friday night. Friday night of the matches. And Jeff Sluman was my assistant captain and the he says, what do you want? We want to have hamburgers. And they went out and hamburgers on Friday night and they played like hamburgers on Saturday night. So that was the answer to that. No hamburgers.
So we, I'm pretty simple. I like, in the morning, I like to have what I had in the morning before if I played well. If I didn't play well I would change my food. And I like repetition a little bit. I was usually a little bit of fruit and a cheese omelette in the morning that usually carried me through most of the day and have a little snack midway in the round. At night if I was going to have a steak it was going to be a smallish one -- because I don't want too much heavy -- or fish or something like that. But I tried to stay pretty basic. I always tried to stay basic. I always had a lot of uric acid, which means that your joints get stiff. So I tried to stay -- New Orleans was a tough place for me, shell fish and so forth where you get the inflammation in your hands and so forth from that. So I always tried to stay away from that kind of stuff. And I always tried to be fairly simple. Tried not to change where I was the day before. Does that make sense?
SCOTT MCCARRON: That makes sense. No hamburgers. I got it.
JACK NICKLAUS: Now you, so you shot 68, 68.
SCOTT MCCARRON: 66, 68.
JACK NICKLAUS: 66? Oh, I thought you were saying 8-under. Is that 8-under? Par 71? Change that.
SCOTT MCCARRON: Well you designed it.
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't remember, I don't remember what the par was. But anyway, so you're, so, you know, that's not too bad, whatever you had last night you better have again. Good luck, Scott.
JULIUS MASON: Ladies and gentlemen, please stay in the interview room for Scott for his presser right now, please, and we're going to invite the head table to make their next stop. Thank you very much for joining us today.
JACK NICKLAUS: Thank you guys and gals.
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