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


May 8, 2024

Pat Bradley

Beth Daniel

Clifton, New Jersey, USA

Upper Montclair Country Club

Press Conference

THE MODERATOR: All right, I'm very pleased to be joined by two of our pioneers here are at the Cognizant Founders Cup, Beth Daniel and Pat Bradley. Welcome to Upper Montclair Country Club.

Pat I believe you have a very special announcement you would like to make.

PAT BRADLEY: I do, Matt. I am thrilled to announce today that the Massachusetts Golf Association has agreed to take all of my trophies and all of my memorabilia to be housed at the Mass Golf House and Museum in Norton, Mass, for eternity.

So I am thrilled to know that my hard work and my accomplishments will stay together. I will have my own room At the Golf House. The other thrilling is I'll be right across the hall from Mr. Francis Ouimet and his room.

I am so excited to know where I grew up, where I played my golf, that they're going to take care of my trophies and my memorabilia.

I'm thrilled with it, and to know they'll be safe and sound and be viewed over the years, I'm just honored and thrilled to know they'll be there for eternity.

BETH DANIEL: That's fantastic.

PAT BRADLEY: Than you, Beth, yeah.

Q. I know you said it a little bit, but just how much of an honor is it, especially with the neighbor you're going to have?

PAT BRADLEY: I know it. My mom, bless her heart, she said honey, what about your -- I have five brothers and she said, what about your brothers wanting it? I go, mama, I don't think my brothers want to really take care of my trophies and clean them.

And in fact, my brother, Mark, is going to have his own trophies by his son Mark to take care of and clean.

So little did I know, now, I met Mr. Ouimet when I was 15 years old. I was just beginning the game of golf. I knew of him, knew of his importance through my dad. My dad knew the greats of the men's game and the women's game.

And to think after all these years, here I am, I'm going to be his neighbor right across the hall. I think -- I joined the tour in 1974, and here we are, 2024, I'm celebrating my 50th year being an LPGA professional.

I remember 50 years ago when Carol Mann gave me my little card that said, welcome to the LPGA. I was off and running.

Yeah, it's a very special moment for me and for my family to know I'm going to be there.

Q. Amazing. For Beth, just kind of to pivot to the week ahead, what's it been like coming back to Upper Montclair and just kind of taking in everything, current players, former players? What's it all been like?

BETH DANIEL: I have a lot of fond memories from Upper Montclair when we played the tournament here. As Pat said, you got to be a great player to win here. I played quite a few tournaments here and always enjoyed it.

I think one of the nice things about playing here was that the city is not very far away. You could always just zip into the city. Couple times early on I might have got into a little bit of trouble in the city, but those are good memories.

And then it's always good to come back out on tour and see the players. Last night at the pro-am party, the Solheim Cup potential team was having a big dinner, and Stacy Lewis came in to the pro-am party and invited all of us to come say hello to the players.

I think for Nancy, Pat, Meg, and myself, that was really special to be able to go in there and talk to them and say hello and catch up a little bit.

Because they're always so busy. When you're at tournaments you're so busy.


BETH DANIEL: So it was a nice time for all of us to catch up with all of them.

Q. And then Pat, back to you, the same question: What's it been like this week? Winner in 1983 here. What's the memories flooding back in and taking it all back in?

PAT BRADLEY: I said to Mollie, I've been waiting a long time for this week. (Smiling) Almost 50 years to be a pioneer.

No, this is just a wonderful moment for both Beth and I. I'm honored to share today, the whole week with Beth. We battled many, many times. Playing against Beth I had to work hard. I had to make my game better to walk the same fairways with these great players that we went up against week in and week out.

But coming back to a venue where we -- I was here in 1983, and to think the LPGA is back here again in 2024, it just tells the test of time. This golf course has stood for many years. It was great when we played it back in the '80s. It's great today for these youngsters in 2024.

Q. Two-part question for both of you: We're here celebrating the Founders, Pioneers. What have you seen in the current crop of athletes that you're proud they're carrying on the torch? Similarly, what have the Founders meant to both of you and those that came before both of you guys?

BETH DANIEL: Well, the current players, I mean, the tour is so exciting right now with Nelly going for her sixth, potentially sixth win in a row.

PAT BRADLEY: Only one that's not happy would be Nancy.

BETH DANIEL: And maybe Annika. I don't know.

PAT BRADLEY: Maybe Nancy, maybe Annika.

BETH DANIEL: Since they both won five in a row and she's tied with them. I just think it's a great time for the LPGA. It's a great time for women's sports in general. We see how women's basketball has really jumped with recognition.


BETH DANIEL: So it's kind of an opportunity for the TOUR to take off here a little bit. So that's exciting.

You know, when I'm around the players, they're so personable and they're always so gracious. Thank goodness I didn't have to deal with social media when I was playing.

PAT BRADLEY: Yes, yeah.

BETH DANIEL: Because they're really good on social media and they have people attacking them that -- these anonymous faceless people that attack them and they handle it so well.

So I'm just really impressed by what I see.

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah. I mean, Beth, in our time, we did our job. We practiced after we played. Then we headed home. These young women, there is no down time. They're on call 24/7.

It's not easy. They really have to travel the world to do what they do to do their job. We did travel. I'm not saying we just stayed here.

But these young players today really do a lot of outside traveling. We stayed close to home which was nice. So, yeah, you know, if it wasn't for our 13 Founders there wouldn't be us. There wouldn't be a platform to do our dreams.

So I am extremely grateful to our 13 Founders. They persevered. They showed tremendous courage when in their day women's sports was considered insignificant. They were bound and determined to make it significant.

I'm proud of that. I'm proud of our association. I'm proud that our generation left it good for this group that is performing today. That's what generations do. They did it for us, for Beth and I, the generation before, and we've done it for them. They'll do it for the next.

So it's just a circle of competitive life and sports. And that old saying, timing is everything. Well, timing for me was absolutely perfect. I accomplished more than I ever dreamed I would coming from a small town in Westford, Massachusetts. I did not have the national career that Beth had as an amateur. I was a country bumpkin. I won the Mass Am and that was big stuff.

So I am thrilled. I got more out of this journey than I ever dreamed I would.

Q. Seeing you guys at the pro-am last night with Nancy and Meg, looked like no time had passed at all. Pat, I don't know if you could speak to it, sharing the moment with the women you did travel with, drove all the miles with. How much fun is it to revel in the moment of this event where the LPGA is now alongside some of the women you know helped get it there?

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah, it was pretty special. I mean, last night I said to Beth and Meg, how did I find this place? We didn't have GPS, we didn't have a phone. I must have stopped at 12 gas stations and said, Joe, where is Upper Montclair Country Club? Because it was tucked back here so nicely.

But it was -- I mean, I lit up when I saw Beth and Meg and Nancy. I mean, we don't get together enough. Yeah, we battled and we did our thing, but yet to come back and share our stories, we were talking about our trips to Japan last night. Yeah.

BETH DANIEL: Toga parties.

PAT BRADLEY: Toga parties where we took the sheets off the bed and made our togas. We were over in Japan one time during Halloween and we took our sheets and we made costumes and knocked on doors, trick or treat, trick or treat. They were like, who are you people?

Anyway, we had a lot of great times.

BETH DANIEL: I think in the days when -- especially when I was first on tour we did a lot of stuff as a group. We would go out and ten of us would go did dinner. One person would book the reservation and ten of us would go to dinner and just talk about our lives, what was going on in your lives.

It was kind of a way to vent at night, to go to dinner with this group. You know, I don't see a lot of players doing that today.


BETH DANIEL: So I think that when Pat says she played in the right generation, I feel the exact same way. I'm very happy with the generation that I played in and with, the people that I played well.


BETH DANIEL: I'm still to this day friends with a lot of them. I mean, Patty Sheehan, I stay in touch with.


BETH DANIEL: There are so many players. Hollis Stacy. Texting with Hollis all the time. You know, it's just fun to keep up with their lives. It's different now. We talk about different things. How is your mother and how is your mother, that kind of thing.

PAT BRADLEY: Beth had an agent, Nancy had an agent, most of us didn't have an agent. In today's world it's big business. Those young women have to have agents. They're a brand that needs to be developed and out there and that's a lot of work.

I just did my job and did okay, but it was more family back in the early days. Today everybody has an agent; a lot of us did not. We just did our thing.

Q. I think for both of you, obviously you all were connected to the Founders. I think it's so cool they're is still that living, breathing link to the Founders through the Pioneers now. How cool is it for both of you to carry their legacy forward as Pioneers and be a representation of what it means to work to get this tour where it is today?

BETH DANIEL: It's great.

PAT BRADLEY: You were close to Louise.

BETH DANIEL: Louise lived in Delray Beach and that's where I went after school, went down to Delray. It's because of Louise and JoAnne Carner that I joined Pine Tree Golf Club. They were like, you need to join this. I called my agent and said, it cost this much money. Let's break it down. If you think you're going to be there for five years, it's worth it.

And I've been at Pine Tree ever since. I love it. But I got a lot of good advice from Louise, JoAnne Carner. You know, I felt lucky to have them as friends. But Louise was a tough woman. She told it like it was. Sometimes you didn't want to hear it, especially about your golf game if you were in a slump or something.

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah, no crying.

BETH DANIEL: Louise was, you need to do that and you need to do that. I never got mad at here because I know she did it out of the love. Yeah, and I heard a lot of stories about the Founders and the struggles that they went through.

I just give these 13 women so much credit for -- you figure they start talk about this in the 1940s. They didn't get the charter done until '50.

Think about the social culture of those times, and these are 13 women that are like, screw you. We're going to start a women's golf tour and we don't care what any of you men think. We're going to make it work. And they did.

PAT BRADLEY: They did.

BETH DANIEL: Thank goodness for them. They set the tone for all of us and gave women another option instead of staying amateur their whole career, which is what everyone did.

PAT BRADLEY: Back in that day.

BETH DANIEL: Back in the day. So gave women another option. I am so happy that the 13 Founders are going into the World Golf Hall of Fame as a group. They need to be acknowledged as a group, because they had to work as a group to make this happen.


BETH DANIEL: They literally did everything.


BETH DANIEL: But then when we came up, they were on us as young players. They're like -- I mean I'll never forget, I went to Q-School and I qualified, and the next week was the first tournament in Miami. I walk out of the locker room for the first round and Donna Caponi stops me. She says, where are you going? I'm going out to practice and play. She said, your shoes are dirty. We don't do that. Go in the locker room and clean your shoes.

I turned right around and went in the locker room and cleaned my shoes.

PAT BRADLEY: Yep, you're a professional.

BETH DANIEL: That's what they were like. Image was really important.


BETH DANIEL: How you dressed, looked, all that kind of stuff. They had no problem coming up and telling you. They were protecting their investment.


Q. Getting back to the memorabilia and the trophies.

PAT BRADLEY: Yes, sir.

Q. Now that you're getting it out of the house, are you going on a buying spree?

PAT BRADLEY: No, but I am going to be much more relaxed. It is -- it's just in the house.

BETH DANIEL: Shh, don't say that yet.

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah, it's all packed up and it's gone. No, yeah, it's going to be a relief, yes, Tom, to know that they're all going to be together. I won't piecemeal it off.

I've already got some ideas with the buildout, and Mass Golf has been so receptive. I wasn't sure, you know.

I mean, you got Francis Ouimet, the Curtis Sisters, Donald Ross, he's right there. I'm like, really?

They just were so welcoming and I just am so relieved. I really am, Tom, to know they're going to keep it.

Q. One of the follow-up questions that leads into this week is you two have both been hot on your career. Can you imagine winning five in a row and how do you handle that?

PAT BRADLEY: Well, that old saying, it's when you least expect it. Nelly is not coming in here when you least expect it. All eyes are on her. It's going to be tough. It is going to be a challenge for Nelly.

I'm sure she can't wait for the bell to ring and get inside those ropes and be able to focus like she does. But right now, it's going to be interesting.

To see her at the Met Gala, I mean, that was exquisite. She was absolutely beautiful, and it was just -- I was just so proud to see this young lady amongst all these celebs, and she pulled it off just fabulous, like she is. She's just a very talented, wonderful young lady.

What a role model that we have to take our game forward.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah, I watched when she won the fifth in a row and she said that was the most nervous she's been down the stretch. I can only imagine how nerve-wracking this week is going to be.

Nelly a is a phenomenal player. Really is. To win six in a row, five in a row, four in a row, whatever.


BETH DANIEL: Your game has to be up here the whole time. That's hard to do. It's hard to keep it up there. You know, I just hope in her weeks off she was able to recharge her battery and get back out here and be able to focus.

But I'm pulling for her.

PAT BRADLEY: I am, too.

Q. Question for both of you: Both of you had the chance it interact with the Founders and play with them. What are your most vivid memories of what they were like on the golf course? And the second part of the question: How important is it for today's players to remember what the Founders did so their contributions don't get lost to history somewhere, which can happen?

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah. Well, I mean, this event here is really important. Putting the Founders up front for these young players is showing them who they are and what they did. Our Founders, they were very businesslike, you know, in a world where women weren't in big business.

But we knew -- I think Beth and I knew that we had to carry the torch from these wonderful women and we had a big job to do and we respected them greatly. We were fortunate enough to play golf with Marlene Hagy, Alice Bauer. Played golf with Marilynn Smith. I knew Patty. I knew Louise of course. Louise came to my Hall of Fame celebration.

So we knew that these women were important and that we were going to do the right thing for them.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah, and I would just say that when we had the Hall of Fame celebrations in the past, a lot of the Hall of Famers and the Founders who were still alive were there.

But I had -- Louise was right in Delray Beach. Betty Jameson in this Boynton Beach, so I saw Betty a lot. I never played golf with Betty. I did play with Louise later in life.

Well, I'll just tell a funny story. She remained very competitive late in life. It was JoAnne Carner err, myself, Louise Suggs, and Meg Mallon. We gave Louise 18 strokes because she was up there.

So she gets to the second par-3 and she hits it about a foot from the hole for a -- two for a one. So Joanne and I look at each other walking off the green and we're like, next time you're getting 14 strokes. You're not getting any on the par-3s.

She had a great short game even late in life. I used to invite her over. We would go over and have lunch and she would always be like, come on, I want to watch you hit some balls. It was amazing the eye that she still had for teaching. She would pick up on some little thing in my swing that would help me.

Yeah, the Founders were something. They were much more up front than what you would see people or players today. So they had no problem just kind of telling you things to your face and they engrained in us that it is your responsibility to carry the torch.


BETH DANIEL: When we're gone, you need to get to the next generation.


BETH DANIEL: I think some of us have tried to do that but I feel like we're losing that a little bit on tour.


BETH DANIEL: I would like to see that a little more, letting these players know what's expected of them from a tour standpoint.

PAT BRADLEY: Uh-huh, right.

Q. I had the chance to interview Louise about ten years ago, and yes, she was very up front. Both of you have excelled at carrying their legacy forward. Thank you both.

So can you guys talk just a little bit about the evolution of the game, especially with some of the amazing players as of late? Nelly Korda, Jin Young Ko, and Lydia Ko, and how are they shaping the game for the better?

PAT BRADLEY: The game is definitely global. We have become a global tour, which I think it's important that we travel the world, this generation travels the world and shows their gifts of their golf to other countries.

And then of course you got to come to the United States to challenge your game. This is where greatness is made is in the United States.

We have a tremendous sponsors, our -- the money has gone way up. The golf courses have gone really high, major golf courses.

So I see this generation, I mean, they're doing their thing and they know how important the game is to the world. It brings us all together. There are no boundaries in the game of golf. Football you can't play forever and all that, but golf is a game of a lifetime, whether we use it in business or on the LPGA Tour.

So, I mean, I just think that's youngsters, young ladies, are just doing their thing and enjoying it, and they're playing it at the highest level. They're all so good. It's fun to watch.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah, well, you ask about the evolution of the game, that's kind of a loaded question. The game has definitely evolved from -- I mean, to metal woods and the hybrid clubs. They're so much easier to hit.

So the game has become more of an equipment game I think.

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah. Very good, Beth.

BETH DANIEL: But these players are -- I mean they just are good. They're really good. They're fun to watch. They have all the shots.

PAT BRADLEY: Every shot.

BETH DANIEL: It's exciting to watch the tour right now.


Q. One more question: So back when you were playing earlier in your careers and your dreams of what the LPGA could become, did your expectations match what it is now? Exceed it?

PAT BRADLEY: Well, I joined the tour in '74. We had about 30 to 32 events, and the total prize money of all 32 events was a massive 1.2 million. So that had to be divided up among 80 to 100 players. Today these young ladies are playing for 120 million.

The other thing, Beth, I kind of summized for myself, is in my day, I had the fortune to have trial and error. Meaning if I made an error, I could still hold my own during the tournament.

These kids today, they make an error and 15 players jump above them. There is no room for mistakes, where in in my day, 1974 until Beth came, I could make mistakes. Once Beth came I couldn't make any mistakes because I knew she was going to jump over me.

So my first three years I had the luxury of trial and error, where I could three-putt and still hold my own. Today you three-putt, 15 people pass you on the leaderboard.

There is no room for error with these young women. They got game and they step on that pedal and they don't take it off.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah, I think ultimately, you go out there every day, try to shoot the lowest score you can shoot, and that's just the nature of the game.

If you look at it that way, then I think you're okay. You have to kind of compartmentalize it.


BETH DANIEL: But, yeah, I mean, you're kind of right about that, about being able to do that. Although I won at World Championship one year and made quad on the first hole.

PAT BRADLEY: Oh, you really fought hard.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah. I had to play really hard coming back. And there weren't -- I think there were 20 players in the field. You're not dealing with everyone.

PAT BRADLEY: Yeah, but still, Beth, fighting back from a quad is a lot of work.

BETH DANIEL: Yeah, it was a wicked start. You know, yeah, I think you just go out there -- but they have to play well all the time. It's hard to even make cuts.


BETH DANIEL: Much less win tournaments or win five in a row.


BETH DANIEL: It's very difficult and you have the best of the best playing in one tour.

PAT BRADLEY: Yep, the best of the best, one tour. You're right. And we share it with the world.

THE MODERATOR: One last question. I know we could probably sit here and talk forever. Just one last one from me. Lydia Ko still chasing one more point to join the Hall of Fame. Talk on that achievement, on her, how she's playing, and both of you being in the LPGA Hall of Fame as well. What do you remember about when you got in?

BETH DANIEL: It's always exciting when you get in.


BETH DANIEL: I just was talking to Golf Channel earlier about Lydia, and I said, I think when you're one point or two points away, it's harder.

PAT BRADLEY: It's tough.

BETH DANIEL: It's kind of like what Nelly is going through trying to win six. She has one tournament to win, so any tournament she goes to she's -- Lydia is a focus.

PAT BRADLEY: Uh-huh, yeah.

BETH DANIEL: That makes it really, really hard. It's hard to get it out of your head.


BETH DANIEL: So you're always thinking about it, you're always reminded of it. It's like the Hall of Fame should be a bonus at the end of a great career.


BETH DANIEL: Shouldn't be a hardship. Right now for Lydia it's a hardship.

PAT BRADLEY: A little bit.

BETH DANIEL: You have to kind of feel for her, but then Lydia needs to know that there are so many people cheering for her to do it.


BETH DANIEL: She would be a great addition to the LPGA Hall of Fame. Frankly, she should be in the LPGA Hall of Fame.


BETH DANIEL: That's how I feel.

PAT BRADLEY: Yep, I agree. You know, it's so easy to say not to worry, it's just a matter of time. But bless her heart. She's grinding and she will not be denied. A player like Lydia will not be denied.

It's just going to -- patience is a virtue. I know she has that because you don't win the tournaments she has won without patience. I know it's hard because she is the focus of each week.

But we are waiting in the wings to welcome her to the Hall and embrace her. It is the crown jewel of your LPGA career. It's the crown jewel.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you so much to both of you, enjoy the rest of the week.


BETH DANIEL: Please don't rain on us.

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