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


September 23, 2003

Loren Roberts


Q. Talk about this course and where perhaps on the PGA Tour it ranks in terms of difficulty or uniqueness in any way.

LOREN ROBERTS: Obviously everybody realizes it's a tough course to walk. Outside of that, I think it has a pretty good mix of holes. It's got some good short holes and it has got some tough long holes. The first hole is a 600-something-40 yard par 5, not really reachable in two most of the time. You start out with four really good holes right off the bat, 1, 2, 3 and 4. And you've got some birdie holes after that, with 5 through 9, and then you're back to a couple of three really good holes, 10, 11, and 12. 10 is a four par. It's got a good mix. Everybody has their favorite courses and unfavorite ones. It's kind of like different players do better on different courses. I've always liked this golf course, for me personally. I've always played well here. Obviously I'm going to like this golf course. But I think it's got a good mix of short holes. You've got hole 16 on the back nine that's drivable Sunday afternoon. If you have a chance to win, it can really throw something into the field. You can jump up there if you happen to make a two on the hole.

Q. Talking to some of the guys out here today and yesterday, it doesn't feel there is a real sense -- it's a challenging course, but it's not going to blow you away.

LOREN ROBERTS: Right. Obviously it plays harder as a par 70 than par 72 when we first started playing here. Pretty generous off most tees, but you have some tight holes. I think the difficulty of the golf course is probably the condition of the greens, how much grain there is and how fast they are. If there is a lot of grain in the greens, they have some speed. This golf course is pretty tough because the greens are going to be firmer and it's tough to get the ball close to the hole. Outside of 20 or 30 feet it's tough to lag it close when you've got bermuda with a couple of different grain changes between you and the hole. The greens are what can make this golf course tough.

Q. You were talking about how hilly this golf course is and the difficulty of walking it. Is it one of the few courses where fatigue plays a factor coming in on Sunday?

LOREN ROBERTS: I think it does. Especially late in the year. We're almost to the end of September, and you usually always have some pretty good heat here this late in the year. It's a pretty hilly golf course. On Sunday afternoon, if you're right there and you've got to make that trek from the 8th tee to the 10th green, that is a pretty good hike, so you better be in shape really.

Q. Do you remember being tired coming down the stretch last year?

LOREN ROBERTS: I was pretty excited. I played good all week, and once I got up there on the 11th tee and went around there, I felt pretty good, but you are going to get tired here if you're not in shape.

Q. This whole issue of illegal drivers and things, when it came up this year, what was your feeling about that and has it changed any? They're going to have this testing next year.

LOREN ROBERTS: You'll probably have to refresh my memory. I think it's going to be voluntary, right?

Q. Yes.

LOREN ROBERTS: If it's voluntary, first there is no player out here that is knowingly playing with an illegal driver. I can't fathom that. We get it from the manufacturer, and you go out and you hit 20 drivers and you're going to pick the one you hit best out of 20 drivers. So nobody is really going to be knowingly playing with an illegal driver. You're not going to measure the face. The only way you can find out is do voluntary testing. If it's voluntary, why would you do it? That would be my point. I think it ought to be mandatory.

Q. Have you ever suspected anyone of maybe having an illegal driver?

LOREN ROBERTS: No. I'm 180th in driving distance out here, 182nd or 185th in driving distance. If I had one, who would know.

Q. Have you suspected anyone else or does that ever really concern you?

LOREN ROBERTS: No. It's still a game of getting the ball in the hole. I always felt, the farther you hit it, when it's off line, the farther into trouble it goes. I just don't think length is really the way to make a golf course play hard. I really don't. I think when you play a golf course firm and fast, and you have got bunkers and you've got some rough and whatnot, that's the challenge. If you can hit it a long way and hit it straight, you have it made. Just to hit it long and off line or play out of the rough, I don't think is an advantage.

Q. You look at Tiger's example. He has been hitting it long, but he's had some struggles with keeping it straight. A perfect example.

LOREN ROBERTS: I know he definitely was not happy with the way he's driven the ball in the last two Majors.

Q. Talk a little bit about the idea of -- I know the Presidents Cup is coming up and the Ryder Cup and you've been familiar with those events, when the world climate is rocking and rolling like this is now, as far as the situation in Iraq and the countries against the U.S., I'm talking about government, how do the golfers stay above that kind of thing with the growing international field?

LOREN ROBERTS: Most of the guys that play over here, with the exception of the rookie players from overseas, we've known for years -- I've watched them as young players on the Australasian Tour on The Golf Channel. We know all these guys. I would hope to think the game is bigger than any geo-political type thing that's going on right now. I think all sports can go a long way in reconciling some of those things. I know that there's been a couple of players that said they have felt some heckling problems early in the year. I haven't seen it. I think all of us as Americans probably feel a little bit under the gun right now, don't we, from everybody else in the world. I don't think that should affect the sport in any way. I really don't.

Q. The guys are going over to South Africa. It's not parachuting into Germany.

LOREN ROBERTS: It's not like it used to be, South Africa, I don't think, and I know Ernie is very anxious to showcase the golf course that he grew up on. He's very excited about it. He grew up in Fancourt. Isn't that where we're going to play it? I know he's excited. I know a year and a half ago when it came out a couple guys weren't really interested in going and playing and I know he got upset about it. I know he wants everything to go well and I'm sure it will.

Q. What will put you back in the winner's circle?


Q. I don't remember when you won last.

LOREN ROBERTS: What would put me back in?

Q. Yes.

LOREN ROBERTS: I've had a little off year this year. For me, it's putting. If I putt well, I feel I have a chance. I know there's a lot of guys out here that are better ball strikers than I am, but if I putt well, I think I've got a chance. On a par 70 golf course, like it was here last year, you take two par 5s away from the longer hitters, I think that's to my advantage, or to anybody's advantage who is not real long but is fairly accurate and has a good short game. I haven't had that good of a year. It's been an off year for me ball-striking this year, and my putting really hasn't been top notch, but that's simply me. I don't know what to chalk it up to. I don't know if I'm close to the C Tour, if I let down this year. It's been a bit of an off year for me. I'm already planning for next year and wanting to make one last run of doing something out here. I'm still going to play four more times this year. You never know, I might get another one.

Q. Have you made any swing changes in your game this year?

LOREN ROBERTS: No, I haven't. I've been working on the same things. I made swing changes at the end of '01, and last year I really saw some improvement and really played very well and very consistent all year. With a couple of timely putts at the right time, I would have won three times last year instead of just once. I was very pleased with the way I played. This year I just wasn't in the groove. I don't know if it's me physically changing or what.

Q. You mentioned the Senior Tour, the Champions Tour, it seems there is kind of -- it's been kind of flat on the ratings. There is this infusion of talent coming up with Couples and yourself. Do you sense there is a real --

LOREN ROBERTS: I think they've changed the direction they're going with their marketing. I think by moving it to the Champions Tour name, I think being a little more fan friendly, I think they let the fans walk down the fairways now, is my understanding.

Q. Interviews right down the fairway.

LOREN ROBERTS: I think they're going in the right direction.

Q. There are several of you in that mid to late 40s.

LOREN ROBERTS: Jay Haas comes to mind, Peter ^ Jacobsen. I don't know where Jay is going to play. He's playing good. He might stay on the regular Tour.

Q. He's looking forward to it. Do you look forward to the different competition?

LOREN ROBERTS: It's different. I've been geared for 23 years of trying to win tournaments, but you always have that making the cut thing in the back of your mind. I don't know if that will free up. It seems the new guys that come out tear it up the first couple years. I don't know if it's a confidence thing because of the no cut. You go flat out from the very first hole. I think it's a pretty good confidence boost out there. Those guys can still play. Tom Watson, I remember when he won Colonial when he was 49 years of age and just played great. I always considered him one of the best ball strikers out here on Tour and he won Colonial. And it wasn't four or five months later, six months later, he was saying things like he just couldn't compete on the regular Tour. Which surprised me. I know he can play. He's won two Majors. I know he can play. The first round of the U.S. Open, I was in the lead.

Q. Stadler, 50 years old.

LOREN ROBERTS: Yes, up at B.C. Jacobsen wins at Hartford. It can still be done.

Q. Speaking of Watson, he's so precise, if everything is not perfect for him, his ball-striking, he's not a happy player. Does that affect you the same way?

LOREN ROBERTS: He has a pretty high level of what he expects out of his game because of how many majors has he won, seven majors. You're going to have pretty high expectations of your game.

Q. Technology as a whole, do you sometimes wonder where it's all going to end up? Are you pretty comfortable with the way it appears to be heading or not?

LOREN ROBERTS: I'm so old school. I wished we still played with wood heads and steel shafts and forged irons. In fact, I thought they should have one tournament a year where you played with wood heads and steel shafts and forged irons and wound golf balls, and let's see who would do the best. Just for fun, have one tournament a year like that. Call it the throw-back event or something.

Q. Everybody would be hitting into the green from 80 yards.


Q. Just like the other sports, we have the retro uniforms, why not have the retro equipment. It would be a good marketing tool.

LOREN ROBERTS: It would be. There's got to be a line drawn in the sand. It seems to me that line has shifted for the last 10 or 12 years. It's never been a definite line in the sand, and I think technology -- testing technology has got to catch up with the golf club technology, and I think that's where the ball was dropping. I always felt the USGA lost their power to enforce the rules when it came out with a square groove issue back in the early to mid '80s. I think that's where they lost their authority to really administer the rules in the technology area, when they backed down on the square groove issue.

Q. It's almost like space age technology anymore. Everything is alloys and --

LOREN ROBERTS: If you make golf clubs that cost $500 or $600 because of the materials in them, for the average player, it's going to be above the average daily fee player's budget to be able to buy clubs like that.

Q. On a personal note, do you have any particular ritual or lucky charm you carry?


Q. You're not a superstitious player?


Q. So many are.

LOREN ROBERTS: I'm not superstitious about anything.

Q. Having kind of an off year, yet come into a course where you know you've traditionally played well and won, that's got to give you a lot of confidence.

LOREN ROBERTS: I like what I'm doing right now with my game.

Q. Particular courses fit your eye better than others, I'm sure.


Q. And this is obviously one of them.

LOREN ROBERTS: If you asked everyone on Tour, they would have a list of courses they can go and play as bad as they can play and they can't finish out of the Top-10, and they also have a list of courses where they can go and play as good as they can play and not make the cut. That's just the way it is. It's golf.

Q. I hate to kind of beat a dead horse here on this driver issue. What do you think will happen when they have this voluntary testing in January? Will they be -- if somebody first of all, a lot of people just don't think anybody is going to get caught, that there will be anybody doing it, but I don't think there will be.

LOREN ROBERTS: That will voluntarily go do it?

Q. Yes.

LOREN ROBERTS: I don't know. You have everything to lose and nothing to gain doing it voluntarily. That's why I think it should be mandatory. As long as it's mandatory and you don't go convict the guy because he comes in with a driver he's had for a couple of years or something and he finds out he's 0.222 centimeters off from what they deem legal. There isn't one player out here that can take his driver head apart and find out if it's legal or not, until they do the testing on it.

Q. If you could play with an old-time player who's long gone, would there be one particular player that you might like to have played with?

LOREN ROBERTS: Walter Hagen.

Q. For any reason particularly?

LOREN ROBERTS: He was such a showman. Along with being a great match-play player, just being a great player in general. It would have been nice to be around him and see how he interacted with the crowd, see how he played, watch his gamemanship, stuff like that. He's a throw back. Arnold really made the game what it is for us now, but I think Arnold and Jack and those guys, the game was made for them by -- like Gene Sarazen and Walter Hagen. When Walter Hagen played, he wasn't allowed in the clubhouse or anything. He made it acceptable to be someone who played the game for a living.

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